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Leadership Responsibility

An 8-year-old on the throne

Josiah became king of Judah when he was only 8 years old, yet even at age 8 we see godly leadership skills in the young king. The Bible tells us he “did what was right in the sight of the Lord and walked in the ways of his father David; he did not turn aside to the right hand or the left.” (2 Chronicles 34:2). In verse three, we find that in his 8th as king (he would have been 16 years old) he began to seek God. Then in his 12th year, he began purging the nation of idolatry worship. In the 18th year of his reign, he began repairing the temple and in doing so, the book of the law was discovered. This could have been one or more scrolls containing the entire Pentateuch, which we know as the first five books of the Bible: Genesis to Deuteronomy.

Josiah understood that as king of God’s people, he had a leadership responsibility to lead his nation to follow God’s law. As a result, the nation saw a revival while Josiah was king and God’s judgement was delayed.

The Law of Moses Found

After being found, the scrolls were brought to the king. His secretary read what was written in them. As the king listened, he became convicted of the sins of the nation and overcome with dread as he realized Judah had not kept the word of the lord for a long time. He feared that God’s judgment was very likely. Josiah sent his royal officers to Huldah, a prophetess, to inquire of God to see what wrath the nation could expect. Huldah’s response was very grave, but God promised Josiah that because his heart was tender and he humbled himself before God, God would hold off His wrath until after Josiah had died. Josiah’s attitude of repentance and his willingness to obey God would bring a reprieve, but judgement was also inevitable. Josiah then gathered all the people together and restored true worship of Yahweh and the people kept the Passover.

A tender and humble heart before God

America desperately needs a leader like Josiah. We need a leader with a tender and humble heart before God. When leadership is based on a tender and humble heart before God, that leader will lead God’s people to repentance and true worship. We need for God to raise up a “Josiah” today – not as a king, but as a Godly leader in every community who has a tender and humble heart before God and an attitude of repentance and a willingness to obey God. Is God calling you?

The responsibility in leadership

Throughout all the kings who sat on the throne of both Israel and Judah, we find that each king is summed up as either doing evil in the sight of God or doing good in the sight of God. Either they led the people in idolatry or he led them to worship God. The people followed whatever the king did. People who are in leadership positions need to recognize the influence and responsibility they have on those whom they lead. Leaders do not just pioneer their teams to reach new heights. They do not only mentor and coach. There is more to leadership than training and setting teams up to succeed. The most important responsibility of a leader is whether you lead people to God or away from Him.

Leadership authority was instituted by God and leaders are appointed by God.

Romans 13:1 tells us that all authorities have been instituted by God. So whether you’re a king or president, congress person, judge, mayor, governor, sheriff, CEO, Executive Director, middle management, team lead, husband and/or father, pastor or deacon – you were placed in the role of leadership by God. Therefore, you have a God-given responsibility to lead others to Christ. Even if your leadership role is a secular position, your team and staff should be drawn to Christ because of how you lead. As a pastor, your congregation should see the Good Shepherd in how you shepherd the flock of your church. As a husband and/or father, you have the responsibility of leading your wife and children to knowing their Heavenly Father and to ensure they are growing spiritually. You can be assured that you will have to give an account to God one day for how you lead.

People who are in leadership positions need to recognize the influence they have on those whom they lead. Leaders are God-appointed, and God-commissioned to lead people to God and they will be held accountable to God for how they lead.

What is a Chronicle and why is it important?

A Chronicle is a factual written account of important or historical events in the order of their occurrence. In Bible days, such writings were used to record history and because of them, we have the History of Israel and Judah. Second Chronicles covers the time from Solomon’s ascension to the throne (971 BC) until the southern kingdom of Judah was finally carried into exile in Babylon in 586 BC. The focus of 2 Chronicles is on Judah. There are parts of it that is just name after hard-to-read-name and the long lists of genealogies can get monotonous and boring.

However, God has a purpose for these Chronicles to be included in His divinely inspired Word to us today. If we care to study both the sin of Judah and God’s judgement that is the result of their sin, we can learn from them. We can see how dangerously close America is to repeating Judah’s sin of deserting God. We can learn that the fate of an entire nation rest in the leadership hands of their king. Unfortunately, we mostly choose to think of this as something that happened in history and we do not apply it to our world today. Just as God had enough of Judah’s sin, there is coming a day when God will have enough of our sin in America.

How would you be summed up in a chronicle written about your life?

If someone wrote a chronicle about your life, would it be summed up as doing “evil in the sight of God” or doing “right in the sight of God”?

If someone wrote a chronicle about your life, would it be summed up as doing “evil in the sight of God” or doing “right in the sight of God”?

Following the Leader

With the exception of a few Godly kings mixed in, most of the kings turned away from God to worship false gods and idols. They led their entire nation into sin that would eventually bring the destruction of the nation as God’s judgement on them. Some even sacrificed their own children in the pagan worship practices. The price of ungodly leadership was they lost the Promised Land. Assyria conquered them and sent the people into exile.

America has fallen way from Godly principles and its leaders are responsible

For centuries, America was known as a Godly nation, but sadly, we too have seen a falling away from Godly principles and teachings. Those in leadership power have changed laws so they can live the way they want without having to feel guilty. As a result, crime is higher than ever, the value of human life is rapidly declining. Divorce is rampant. There are so many children in foster care that there are not enough good homes to place them in. Domestic violence, sexual exploitation, human trafficking, drug and alcohol abuse, and abortion are everyday occurrences. There is no shame in an unwed pregnancy or in being a homosexual. We even have people who seem to be “confused” about their gender. Prayer is banned from schools. God’s name is used as a cuss word rather than a blessing.

Some have tried to exonerate their guilt by removing the Ten Commandments from our court rooms, but doing so does not erase God’s laws. Sin is still sin. God is still God. And as God judged Judah and Israel, he will also judge America, unless the people of God humble themselves, pray, seek God’s face, and repent of their sin – including the sin of complacency.

Removing the 10 Commandments from our court rooms will not erase God’s laws. Sin is still sin. God is still God. And as God judged Judah and Israel, He will judge America today.

Why voting matters

As Christian Americans, we have a great responsibility every time we go to the polls to vote. How we vote makes a difference in the course of this nation. Voting is not about getting your party’s nominee into office. It is about ensuring that as we prayerfully seek God’s will, we entrust our nation to men and women who will boldly stand up for God and lead our nation to be “One nation under God.” We have the responsibility to do the research on each and every candidate. And the first thing you ought to seek to know about them is their relationship with Christ and does their leadership to this point demonstrate they are a Christ-follower? Christians must play a bigger role in politics and in the polls before Christianity becomes something just found in our history.

Will God Judge America?

I don’t think the question should be will God judge America, but how much will God judge us? Is COVID-19 a judgement from God? It could be – or it could be a natural part of living in a broken and sinful world. The question we should be asking is, “how much more will God judge Christians today who have sat back and looked the other way?”

We’ve stayed home when the polls were open. We’ve stayed inside our comfortable church walls instead of winning our communities for Christ. Instead of being a light of Christ to the world, we’ve become like the world. Our complacency calls for our guilt. Little by little Satan has chipped away at the Godly principles of America until we really don’t look much different than Judah – and we as Christians have allowed it. If God judged Judah as harshly as He did, how much more so will he judge America when He gave us the history of Judah as an example and we have ignored it?

Praying for a revival in America

Under Josiah’s leadership, Judah experienced a revival and the people returned to worshiping God. Our world needs a revival today. It is time for us to inquire of God for our nation and the nations of the earth. It’s time for us to return to valuing God’s laws and to keeping His commandments. If we do not, the time is coming where God’s wrath will be poured out on us.

Our world needs a revival today. It is time for us to inquire of God for our nation. It is time for us to return to valuing God’s laws and to keep His commandments. Will you be a humble and tender heart that prays for our nation?

A Call to Prayer for God’s People

Are burdened for the state of America today? Will you be a leader in your church that will organize and lead your church in fasting and praying for our nation? God is looking for leaders with a humble and tender heart – is that you? It’s time God’s people – the ones called by His name – Christians humble themselves and pray and seek God face if we want Him to hear us from heaven, forgive our sin, and heal our land.


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A Parent’s Responsibility

As Christian parents, is it enough to take your kids to church every Sunday? Absolutely not. We need to find every possible opportunity to teach them about God. We need to start them at a young age of reading their Bible every day and learning how to pray. They need to lean about God through the examples that we set – how we spend our money, the words we use and the tones in which they are said, what we watch on TV, and how we react in rush hour traffic. The need to see mom and dad modeling a Christian marriage. Every moment of every day. That is the parenting responsibility God expects from us.

The Responsibility to diligently teach them the ways of God

In Deuteronomy God said we have the responsibility to diligently teach our children the ways of God. We should be teaching them at home, on the road, walking through the park, as they lay down to sleep each night, and the first thing when they wake up in the morning. God expects us to teach them to recognize God’s blessing and to hear His “still, small voice.” We should teach them about tithing and how to be servant leaders. We should teach them to bear the image of Christ and how to be salt and light in the world. God expect us to teach them to love their neighbors – no matter who they are and without prejudice. We should help them memorize Bible verses to hide in their hearts. We should teach them songs that honor and glorify God and teach them how to thank Him for everything.

The responsibility to leave a lasting impression of God

Did you notice the word that is used here for the responsibility we have to teach our children about God?  We are to diligently teach our children. Another translations says, “Impress them on your children…” When does something leave an impression? Let’s say you have some cast iron chairs on your deck or porch that have a pattern on them. If you sit on that chair for even a few moments, it will leave an impression on your backside, but quickly fade once you get up. But if you sit on it for 60 minutes, you’re going to be walking around with an impression on your backside for quite some time. The longer you sit, the greater impression it leaves.

God wants us to spend time with him and his Word so that he may leave a lasting impression on us. The more time we spend with God’s Word the greater impression it leaves on us. It is an impression of God’s love, faithfulness, power and promises. An impression that reminds us of just how valuable our relationship with Christ actually is. When we model that to our children, it will leave a lasting impression on them.

A Father’s responsibility

For fathers, you have the opportunity and responsibility of leading your family and growing them spiritually. But good spiritual leadership doesn’t happen by accident. You have the responsibility to make a deliberate investment of yourself into the people in your home. It begins with your own spiritual leadership. You cannot invest into the spiritual development of your family if you are not first investing in your own. Husbands and fathers only lead well when they have paid careful attention to their character and ensure they are both teaching and modeling Godly character.

You need to remember that they know you better than any other person, so you won’t be able to hide even small character flaws from them. Your life is their model, and they will be following your lead. To lead your family intentionally, you need to have a plan for yourself. Ask yourself the question: “Do I have a plan for my development and growth as a man, husband, and father?” If not, you better get one, because your leadership is only as good as your plan—and subsequently how you work that plan.

A Husband’s Responsibility

As a husband, you also have a God-given responsibility in your relationship with your wife. Everything you do to nurture your relationship with your wife will have a direct impact on the overall health of your entire family. How you love your wife, honor her, respect her, listen to her, and forgive her not only teaches your children how to treat others, but it also prepares them for their own future marriage relationship. Your sons are learning everything about how to treat a woman by watching you and how you treat your wife. Your daughters are learning about how a man should treat them. Ask yourself: “Do I want my children to have the same kind of relationship with their spouse as I do with my wife?”

A Wife’s responsibility

As a wife, you also have a responsibility in your relationship with your husband. Everything you do to nurture your relationship with your husband will have a direct impact on your entire family. How you love your husband, honor him, respect him, submit to him, listen to him, and forgive him, teaches your children about God’s design for a Christian marriage. Your daughters are watching you and learning these vital relationship skills that she will carry into her own marriage relationship one day. Momma’s, ask yourself: “Do I want my daughter to have the same kind of marriage relationship with her spouse as I do with my husband?”

Proverbs 31:10-31 describes what a godly wife and mother looks like. Verses 26-28 of that passage says, “She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.”

The Investment of Parenting Well

Parenting is tough. It’s hard work. It takes investing time, effort, and energy. That can be hard after a long day at work – but it’s an investment that has lifelong dividends. Even simple investments in the life of your children will demonstrate your love for them and show them they are important to you. In the dairy of Winston Churchill’s father, he penned, “Spent the day fishing with Winston. A day wasted.” Whenever we invest time into our children, it is never wasted time. Investing our time into their lives is a responsibility and our children long for us to just spend time with them – on their level – investing into them each and every day.

We have the responsibility of having an invested relationship with our children

Leading our children requires us to have an invested relationship with them. That means we can’t sit on the couch with the remote or game controller in our hand and issue commands or ignore the kids. Their life is directly impacted by the investment of your time. Be present with them in pursuits that matter to them.

Engage casually with them. Take them for one-on-one dinners. Ask them for prayer requests and pray for them and with them. Extend grace to them when needed. Show them how to do something new, such as building something together, working on a car or a home repair project together. Maybe your something new looks more like teaching a craft or hobby such as crochet, sewing, baking, etc. Or refurbishing a piece of antique furniture together. Have a significant, age appropriate talk with them on a controversial topic and be sure you are showing them in God’s Word what God has to say on the topic. From time to time, ask them about their “high and low of the day” and discover their challenges and disappointments.

When we fail in our responsibility

If you find that spending time with them feels like wasted time or when you fail in your responsibility to teach your children the ways of God, they are likely to spend their entire lives trying to prove their worth to you or trying to earn your love and respect. They will feel unloved, unwanted. They will turn to their peers to attempt to find their self-worth, rather than learning from you that their self worth is found in God.

So, is the non-verbal message you are sending to them saying they are waste of your time or that they are valued and loved and worth your time? Just as Jesus invested in his disciples by spending time with them gave them the skills they needed for the work He was calling them to do, so your spending time with your children will prepare and equip them for the life they will have.

The responsibility to use our mistakes as teaching opportunities

Every parent messes up at times. But even the “mess ups” become opportunities for teaching children about God’s grace and forgiveness. It also empowers them with the skills for extending grace and forgiveness to others. Don’t allow your pride to keep you from saying, “Son, I was wrong. I need you to forgive me.” Then use your “mess up” as grounds for teaching them what God says and about how God forgives us. When you become vulnerable and real with your children by sharing your failures with them, they will soak up your values, beliefs, and faith.

No matter the age of your children, the years you have them at home to influence them are short. Before you know they will be grown adults and stepping out into the world on their own. You will never get those years back. You will never get a “do over.” So invest in them by modeling Godly behavior, developing them spiritually, and investing your time with them.

God, thank you for the blessing of our children. Bringing them up in the admonition of the Lord is hard work, but with Your help, we commit to raising them in the full knowledge of who you are. Help us to parent them well, teaching them diligently about your commandments and love for them. Help us to model obedience to Your Word  as we diligently train them every moment of every day in every circumstance. 


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Now you can enhance your Bible Reading with the Verse Mapping Template

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We’ve put together 52 memory verses for you to hide God’s Word in your heart! You can download the full document for free and then print a new verse each week and as many copies as you’d like. Each verse prints four times on a page so that you can then cut them into index size cards and place them in prominent places where you will see them frequently throughout the day to help you remember to memorize them. Just because you visited our site, they’re yours for free! Download today.

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Fight on my Knees

We all fight battles–relationship, financial, cancer, COVID, professional, educational and more. But no matter what the battle, it belongs to God. So, fight on your knees with your hands lifted high. (Based on the song, Battle Belongs, by Phil Wickham.)

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God, Love and Marshmallow Wars by Julia M. Bruce

What’s Inside God, Love and Marshmallow Wars?

God, Love and Marshmallow Wars is a book that includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on.
  • Conversation Starters.
  • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages.
  • Romance Builders.
  • Relationship Builders.
  • Personal reflections.
  • Date ideas.
  • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples.

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Mark 6:31 – Time for rest

Today’s Verse: Ephesians 5:23

by Julie Bruce

Jesus and the Disciples needed rest

Jesus had been performing miracle after miracle. He had been teaching crowds, defending himself against the Pharisees, and now recently, his cousin, John the Baptist had been beheaded. And everywhere He went, he had the disciples in tow, teaching them everything He possible could for the time after He would return to heaven and the gospel message would be placed into their hands to spread throughout the world. They stood by observing, soaking everything in and miracle after miracle, they were left in speechless awe. We also find in Mark 6 that they were weary and needed rest.

Then, the story changes scenes as Mark inserts the interlude story of John the Baptist being beheaded. In the gospel of Matthew, we find that this incident is connected to Jesus deciding to get away for a while for some rest.

We all need rest from time to time, even when we are busy doing the Lord’s work and serving Him through ministry. Since God created us, he knows more than anyone else that our bodies need adequate rest. And because Jesus, the Son of God, came to dwell among us in a flesh and blood body, he experienced being tired. In John 4:6, we find Jesus worn out from His journey and sat beside the well where he would encounter the Woman at the Well.

Without rest, we are not fully able to accomplish the tasks he has called us to do. When we become so tired that we don’t know how we can keep going, Matthew 11:28 says, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Jesus calls us to himself

The Greek word for “come” is deute and means to “come hither” or “follow.” Jesus calls us to himself and to follow His example. Jesus calls us to experience Him in an up-close-and-personal kind of way. He longs to bring us into close proximity and into an intimate fellowship with himself. He wants us to take whatever circumstance we are in and He says, “Give them to Me.” He longs for us to give Him every burden and problem in total surrender and dependence on Him. As we learn to trust him, we are then able to find peace and rest. In 2 Chronicles 20:17, God tells his people to “position yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord. He is with you.”

Heavy-ladened and weary

Sometimes we get so caught up in hurrying from one to-do item to another that we barely have time to breathe. We end up heavy-laden with burdens and become weary. The Greek word for “weary” is kopiao and means “to labor, toil, expand great effort in hard and disagreeable work,” “to grow weary, tired; labor to the point of exhaustion.” Doesn’t this sound like us? But instead of taking time to rest, we just grab some caffeine or one of those very unhealthy energy drinks and just keep going. The result shows in both our physical health and emotional health. What we really need, is rest.

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God created our need for rest

“Rest” is the Greek word anapauo which means “to refresh, rest up,” or “to cease from labor.” God created our need for rest…a pause from life…for our own good.  A pause to cease from the hustle and noise of life so we are able to:

  • Seek His will and determine our steps
  • spend time with God so we are able to listen to Him
  • re-energize
  • avoid burnout
  • to keep serving Him in whatever capacity we have been called

Saying “yes” to too much

At times, we allow ourselves to get so caught up in life and say “yes” to too many things (sometimes, even ministry areas in the church) until we become burned out. But when we take a pause and seek His will, He will give us insights and let us know His will so that we don’t overextend ourselves to the point of becoming exhausted. We can protect ourselves from being involved in too much if we take the pause to determine His will. However, even when we are following His will, we become weary and need to take a pause. It then becomes a time of re-evaluation and we need to eliminate unnecessary things from our lives so that we have the energy and time to do what He has called us to do.

Daniel was weary

Sometimes, as we do the will of God, Satan fights against it and we feel as if we are rowing a boat upstream without a paddle. Taking a pause to spend time with God and pray over the task we’ve been given will send the angel armies our way. Daniel is an example of this.

In Daniel, chapter 9, he is praying for the Lord to hear him. Verses 20-23, Daniel pleads to God and in his weariness, Gabriel comes to him. Daniel wrote in these verses, “While I was speaking, praying, confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my petition before Yahweh my God concerning the holy mountain of my God- while I was praying, Gabriel, the man I had seen in the first vision, came to me in my extreme weariness.”

Then in Chapter 10, verses 12-13, Daniel receives another visit. In these verses we read, “Don’t be afraid, Daniel,” he said to me, “for from the first day that you purposed to understand and to humble yourself before your God, your prayers were heard. I have come because of your prayers. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia opposed me for twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me after I had been left there with the kings of Persia.”

God had heard Daniel’s prayers and sent his messenger to Daniel, but the prince of the kingdom of Persia stood in the way opposing the messenger. Daniel was completely unaware of the spiritual warfare his prayers were stirring up. Yet Daniel continued to pause and seek God until the messenger arrived.

A time of pause and rest allows us to listen to God

Another reason to pause and rest is so we are able to listen to the voice of God. 1 Kings 19:12 is the only verse in the Bible that talks about God speaking in a whisper. Because we have the Spirit of God dwelling within us, the way God speaks to us today is the soft whispers across our heart as we are reading His Word or as the Holy Spirit recalls a verse of scripture to our minds. Sometimes it comes to us as our pastor is preaching or in a conversation with a friend.

These soft, quiet impressions are easy to get loss in the loud bustle of everyday life. If we want to hear the voice of God, we need to quiet ourselves and listen with expectation. He longs to speak to us. But we have to ask ourselves, do we really want to hear His answer? Too often our prayer lives become a one-sided conversation where we tell God what we want Him to do in our lives then jump up and go on about our day. There are things God would love to say to us, but we have to quit talking long enough for Him to get a word in. If you feel as if God never speaks to you, then perhaps it’s time to take a pause and rest in His presence….quietly before him and give Him a chance to speak as we sit silently and listen expectantly.

A time of pause and rest allows us to re-charge

Taking a pause also gives us the change to re-charge. Just as your car runs out of gas, so do our bodies run out of energy. We reach a point where we feel that we have nothing left to give and yet people are still demanding more from us. In Matthew 14:23, Jesus found the need to have some alone time. “After dismissing the crowds, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone.”

Did you notice what he did on the mountain, he prayed. Our help and our strength to keep keeping on comes from God. In Psalm 121:2, the psalmist wrote, “My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.” In Psalm 28:7, he wrote, “The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. Therefore my heart rejoices, and I praise Him with my song.” If you feel as if you energy tank is running on low, when was the last time you had some meaningful time along with God?

While we also need to take time to get plenty of physical rest each night, we cannot neglect the rest our souls need if we are going to be spiritually healthy. So as we take today to honor the labor of our hands, let’s also take time to rest, recharge so that our labors tomorrow hold new energy, ready to continue in the tasks that God has called us to…whether it’s a ministry related job, real estate, medical, education or any other field where work.

Four things Jesus invited the disciples to do

In Mark 6, Jesus recognized the disciples’ need for rest, and He recognizes ours as well. It is under these circumstances that He invited His disciples to…

  • come with him
  • by themselves
  • to a quiet place
  • and get some rest.

Get away

Sometimes getting the rest you need requires you to get away. Maybe you need to get physically away from all the distractions and just rest. Sometimes the rest we need is spiritual and we need to get away with Jesus. Either way, remember that our Savior knows when we need rest and in those moments He invites us to get away with Him. He wants to lead you away from the crowds and the busyness of life to just bask in His presence. To lean on Him, draw from His strength, and be renewed and refreshed. What will it take for you to actually get away with Him for the rest you need?

Relax and recover

Feb 25 ctt 2

Have you ever taken a vacation and when you get back you feel as if you need a vacation from your vacation? Sometimes our vacation are so jammed backed with activities that we come back more exhausted than before we left.

When Jesus invited the disciples to come by themselves, it was a time for the ministry team to relax and recover. Mark 6 tells us that the disciples had been in such high demand in the villages where they went that they hadn’t even had time to eat. Whether you serve in a ministry of some sort, are a stay-at-home-mom, a corporate executive, or a day laborer, we can become so busy that we don’t take time to stop an eat or see to the basic needs of life. Jesus invited his ministry team to take some time just for themselves – where they were not in demand, where they were not healing or preaching or casting out demons. Jesus wanted to invest in them relationally. He was also teaching them the importance of rest so they could keep on serving.

A quiet place

Not only did Jesus invite them to come with him to get away be themselves, but he also wanted them to find a quiet place. Have you ever noticed how uncomfortable it can be when everything is quiet? If we are with others, the silence often feels awkward. Some of us even need the hum of a fan just to go to sleep. Whenever I travel and stay in hotels, the hardest part of getting to sleep is how quiet the room is. The truth is, we simply are not used to quiet. However, Jesus challenges you to find it.

It is in the quiet where we can here Jesus say, “Be still and know that I am God.” He wants us to just be still and rest. God knows the demands that have been placed on us. He knows the ministry He has called us to. And He knows the problems you are struggling with. He knows. And He’s inviting you to come away with Him and rest.

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What’s Inside God, Love and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

Couple activities include:
  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on.
  • Conversation Starters.
  • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages.
  • Romance Builders.
  • Relationship Builders.
  • Personal reflections.
  • Date ideas.
  • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples.

Available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

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Look for the GLMW Group on Facebook.

Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.

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Ephesians 5:23. Head of the House

Today’s Verse: Ephesians 5:23

Head of the House

by Julie Bruce

Are there clearly defined roles within your home? Who has the responsibility of being head of the house? What does this role look like?

A man died and went to heaven to find two signs above two different lines. One sign said: “ALL THOSE MEN WHO HAVE BEEN DOMINATED BY THEIR WIVES, STAND HERE.” That line of men who had not been the head of the house seemed to stretch off through the clouds into infinity.

The second sign read: “ALL THOSE WHO HAVE NEVER BEEN DOMINATED BY THEIR WIVES, STAND HERE.” Underneath the sign stood one man.

He went over to the man, grabbed his arm and said, “What’s the secret, how did you do it? How did you become the head of the house? That other line has millions of men and you are the only one standing in this line.”

The man looked around with a puzzled expression and said, “Why, I am not sure I know. My wife just told me to stand here.”

We have all heard jokes about “who wears the pants in the family.” But who is head of the house is no laughing matter. During the last few decades our culture has redefined marriage and the meaning and responsibilities of men and women in society and in the home have become as jumbled and tangled up as a bowl of spaghetti noodles. Many men are confused do not know how to to be the leaders God has called them to be in their home. So just what does it mean that the husband is the head of the wife?

Head of the home is a responsibility

“Head” does not mean male dominance. A man should not “lord it over” a woman and demand her total obedience to his every wish and command. God never viewed women as second-class citizens. His Word clearly states that we are all equally His children and are of equal value and worth before Him.

Being head of the home doesn’t mean the wife is incapable of thinking, choosing, and deciding. She isn’t a mindless, helpless creature. In fact, God created her to be a helper to her husband. Think for a moment about the head of a corporation. The person in this position is in charge of the corporation, making all decisions and the success or failure of the corporation often lies in the abilities of his/her leadership skills. They have the responsibility of growing the company, developing its employees and providing the corporation’s service to its customers with integrity and professionalism.

In a marriage, God has placed the responsibility of being the head of the home on the shoulders of the husband. As the head, the success of his marriage and his family lies in his abilities to lead his family. He has the responsibility of growing and developing his family spiritually and morally. He has the responsibility to care for them, provide for them, listen to them, and lead them to Christ.

Christ is the head of the church

As a Christian husband, Christ is your head and you should be following His leadership. You should constantly seek His will and direction and then lead your family as Christ leads you. You can’t expect your wife and children to follow you’re leading if you are not following Christ’s leading. When you are not seeking Christ’s leadership in your life, you are more tempted to lead based out of your own selfish desires rather than out of Christ’s will. Selfish leadership is pretty much doomed to failure because it will create contentions. There will be more mistakes that will cause your wife to not trust in your leadership ability. But if your wife knows you have diligently sought direction from God and you are leading your family from that motives rather than selfish motives, she is more likely to willingly follow you, even if it doesn’t match her own desires.

Leading from Christ’s leadership of you

spiritual leader

The spiritual leader who leads as Christ leads him will have both an unconditional love for his wife and a willingness to serve his wife. Remember that Christ loves you unconditional, faults and all and you should love your wife with the same unconditional love. That includes grace, forgiveness, and mercy just as Christ shows to you.

Christ was always willing to serve. Even the most lowest of jobs, Christ stooped and did it and He did it gladly because He loves us. God did not give you the gift of your wife so that she can wait on you and serve you while you prop your feet up with the newspaper or TV. You should be as willing to serve her as she should serve you and you both should serve out of a heart of love just as Christ loved and served you – even to the point of death on the cross.

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What’s Inside God, Love and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

Couple activities include:
  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on.
  • Conversation Starters.
  • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages.
  • Romance Builders.
  • Relationship Builders.
  • Personal reflections.
  • Date ideas.
  • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples.

Available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

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Look for the GLMW Group on Facebook.

Join the community of couples on Facebook who are committed to intentionally growing their marriage and learning how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.

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Ezra 7:10. Four Lessons From Ezra

A Brief Background and History

Ezra was a priest and scribe at the time the captivity of Israel and Judah was coming to an end. He was also a descendant of Aaron. Because of Israel and Judah’s unfaithfulness to God, they were conquered and taken into captivity for 70 years as prophesied by Jeremiah. After the 70 years, King Artaxerxes of Persia released a large company of Israelites, allowing them to return to Jerusalem. However, after they returned, they would have many lessons from Ezra that would shape their future to look very different from their past.

Who is Ezra?

Ezra was skilled in the Law of Moses. This is typically the first five books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. Because of Ezra, Israel experienced reform after returning from exile. Throughout the exile, he preserved and taught the law in Jewish history, and most likely he was the author of the book of Ezra, as well as the books of the Chronicles. He is thought to be the final editor of the Old Testament. From him, we gain the most information about the first return from exile of the Jewish nation. And we can learn four important lessons to apply to our own lives as we learn about his character.

Lessons from Ezra: #1. Preparing Our Hearts

Before he did anything else, Ezra prepared his heart to seek the Law of the Lord. Seeking God often begins with preparing our heart. However, it is also an ongoing process. Every year, here in Florida, we prepare for the Hurricane season, meaning we set everything in order. We pack our hurricane supply kits, make sure generators have gas, ensure we have plenty of water to drink, that medications are packed for an evacuation, windows are boarded up, sandbags are laid down to help prevent water from entering our home, etc. Once we are prepared, we do just sit back and wait out the hurricane season. We keep ourselves prepared.

When we prepare our heart for God, we set things in order and make ourselves ready for God to work in our lives. It is preparing our heart to agree with whatever God says – not trying to get God to agree with what we have already decided to do. If we are willing to abandon our plans and prepare our heart to accept God’s plan, amazing things can happen.

Another part of preparing our heart, is to make sure we have emptied our hearts of things such as envy, bitterness, anger, resentment, and stubbornness. When we clean these things out there is more room for Jesus.

Lastly, a heart that is prepared for God, is a heart that is ready to repent of any sin that might be revealed as we go through the process of preparing our hearts.

Ezra would lead Israel to prepare their hearts for seeking God.

Lessons from Ezra: #2. Seek God’s Word

Second, Ezra sought the Law of the Lord. Many of us, when we find ourselves in a mess, begin to seek the Lord. The Israelites were in captivity – that’s a pretty big mess! As soon as God grants some relief, we quickly go back to our old stinkin’ habits, forgetting God or maybe just returning to a “Sunday Only Christian” lifestyle. The Israelites had a pattern of doing just this. They’d get into trouble and cry out to God and God would grant them a victory. Then the next king would come along and they’d all go back to idol worship again, forgetting everything God had done for them in the past. We do the same thing.

Why Seeking God’s Word is Important

Seeking God’s Word is one of the most important things we can do to grow our faith and to mature as a Christian. We learn the truth about God and seek Him through reading His Word. We come to understand how God expects us to live. Through His Word, we come face to face with our sin and need to be forgiven. God’s Word shows us God’s love for us through Jesus redeeming us by giving His life for ours. As we seek God’s Word, we learn about hell and heaven. We’re given glimpses into what both places are like. And we learn about what the future holds when Christ returns to the earth. God also gives us comfort, encouragement, strength, and instruction. Psalm 119:105 tells us: “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

If we are going to model God’s Word in how we live and teach God’s Word to others, than we need to be sure we are seeking His Word and know what it says. God will hold each one of us accountable for what we did or did not teach and if we taught it accurately. The only way to know what His Word says, is to be a student of His Word.

Ezra would lead Israel to seek God’s Word.

Lessons from Ezra: #3. Do God’s Word

Ezra, however, didn’t just seek the Law of the Lord, he also set out to do it. We learn so much more by example than by word. Ezra studied the Law of Moses and then he lived it as an example to the people. Perhaps, as he studied the law and looked back over the history of the nation forsaking God, he understood that it wasn’t just enough to know the law. God expected the people to obey it. And He expects us to obey it also.

Knowing About Jesus isn’t enough. Even Satan knows Him.

Similarly, it isn’t enough just to know about Christ. We also have to accept His gift of salvation. After all, even Satan knows Jesus. In fact, Satan probably knows Him better than we do since he was once an angel in heaven. But Satan chose rebellion and now his eternity is hell instead of heaven.

It isn’t baptism that saves us either. We can be baptized so many times that every tadpole knows your name, phone number, and social security number, but you can still die lost and without Jesus as your Savior.

We can’t take what God offers and modify it to fit what we want. God’s way is the only way. Ezra sought to do things God’s way. He sought to follow the commandments God had given. James 1:22 says, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only.” God fully expects us to not just read the Bible, but to do what it says. He doesn’t just expect us to hear the preacher on Sunday, but to do what the Holy Spirit convicts us of as He speaks to us through the pastor’s sermon.

Ezra did what the Word said and modeled it for the people to follow.

Lessons from Ezra: #4. Teach God’s Word

Seeking and doing wasn’t enough of Ezra. He also taught the people what God expected of them and how to follow God’s commandments. Through prayer, intercession, and preaching, he achieved some measure of success. In Nehemiah 8, we find that Ezra read the law before all of the people when he re-instituted the Feat of Tabernacles. He had a desire to teach the people what God’s laws were and to help them connect the judgment of their captivity to the past sins they had committed so that they could know how to live as God expected when He brought them back home. After 70 years in captivity, they had to have assimilated some of the culture that surrounded them. If they were going to live God’s way, they had to be taught God’s way. And Ezra was the man for the job.

Ezra: A Model for Us Today

Ezra stands as a model for us today. These four lessons from Ezra show us how to prepare, seek, do, and teach God’s Word to the people God places in our lives. If we want to see a revival in our world today, then we must prepare our hearts, seek the presence of God, do what He tells us in His Word, and then teach it to others. Our world desperately needs some “Ezras” today. Are you an Ezra that God is calling to prepare, seek, do, and teach God’s Word?

#SeektheWord #DotheWord #TeachtheWord

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If not, come join us as we read the Bible through in one year. Each day we post the scripture reading along with links to read it online.

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2 Chronicles 20;12

“For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”

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In this series of blogs, we breakdown why people in ministry need to practice self care. We explain the differences between stress, burnout, and compassion fatigue. Drawing from both psychology and Biblical principles, we teach self-care to keep ministry servants living out God’s call as a missionary, small group leader, worship pastor, nursery worker, facility/maintenance staff, religious non-profit staff, or any other ministry staff, volunteer, or lay-leader. Regardless of the ministry service God called you to, self-care is crucial to continuing God’s work.

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What’s Inside God, Love and Marshmallow Wars?

This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a guided journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage. As you work through the various activities, you will strengthen your relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:

  • Scripture to memorize and meditate on
  • Conversation Starters
  • Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
  • Romance Builders
  • Relationship Builders
  • Personal reflections
  • Date ideas
  • Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples

Available in hardback, paperback and ebook from Westbow Press Bookstore, Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel. Click the icons below to purchase from your preferred bookstore. Now also available at WalMart online.

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 Join the community of couples on Facebook who are intentionally growing their marriage. Discover together how to have a marriage that honors God. Here you can post photos of the different activities as you do them, ask questions of other couples, share how God is using this book to strengthen your marriage, and grow with other Christian couples. We’ll see you in the community.

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(Due to COVID-19, we are only tentatively booking speaking engagements for events after September 2020 based on the recommendations as issued by the CDC and our government officials.)

We are eager to be a part of your next church or ministry event – regardless of size. We can bring one of our ministry programs to your church, or we can tailor a message to your event theme. To request more information or schedule a booking, fill out the online form at the link below. Or call us at 904.239.8937.

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