2 Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,
whom he has
redeemed from trouble
3 and gathered in from the lands,
from the east
and from the west,
from the north
and from the south.
4 Some wandered in desert wastes,
finding no way
to a city to dwell in;
fainted within them.
6 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,
delivered them from their distress.
In his book, Pilgrim's Progress, John Bunyan has written
one of the most beautiful allegories about the journey we all travel as
believers. The book describes the hero, Christian, and his journey from the
City of Destruction to his heavenly destination, the Celestial City. Now
there's one part of Pilgrim's Progress that I want to focus on today -- walking
through the Swamp of Despondency!
At one point during their travels, Christian and his
companion suddenly find themselves there....in the Swamp of Despondency. Still
bearing his burden, Christian, begins to sink in the mire. His traveling
companion manages to get out, but he returns to the City of Destruction without
giving aid to Christian. Christian is left all alone and sinking even deeper in
the mire, until Help, the allegorical figure for the Holy Spirit pulls him free
from the swamp.
Christian then asks Help why this dangerous plot of land
has not been mended so that poor travelers might go safely to the Celestial
City. Help replies, "This miry slough is such a place that cannot be
How true it is in real life! As hard as we try to avoid
them, whether young in the Lord, or spiritually mature...swamps of despondency
seem inevitable, and we must struggle through them!
Charles Spurgeon once wrote to his students in the book,
"Lectures to my Students", "Fits of depression come over most of
us. Usually cheerful as we may be, we must at intervals be cast down. The
strong are not always vigorous, the wise not always ready, the brave not always
courageous, and the joyous not always happy. There may be here and there men of
iron...but surely the rust frets even these."
There are times in our lives when we will struggle
through the swamps of despondency -- but praise God that He has provided us a
helper for those times of need! We need to press through, seeking and trusting
the power of the Holy Spirit to pull us out of those nasty swamps, and set our
feet back upon the Rock of our salvation.
Dear Lord, as we come across the struggles of life thanks
for the helper that You have sent to help us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
19 Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about
anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For
where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.
His nightmares began each day when he awoke. James
Stegalls was nineteen. He was in Vietnam. Though he carried a small Gideon New
Testament in his shirt pocket, he couldn't bring himself to read it. His
buddies were cut down around him, terror was building within him, and God
seemed far away. His twentieth birthday passed, then his twenty-first. At last,
he felt he couldn't go on.
On February 26, 1968, he prayed for it all to end, and
his heart told him he would die before dusk. Sure enough, his base came under
attack that day and Jim heard a rocket coming straight toward him. Three
seconds to live, he told himself, then two, then...
A friend shoved him into a grease pit, and he waited for
the rocket to explode, but there was only surreal silence. The fuse
For five hours James knelt in that pit, and finally his
quivering hand reached into his shirt pocket and took out his Testament.
Beginning with Matthew, he continued through the first 18 chapters.
"When he read Matthew 18:19-20," he said,
"I somehow knew things would be alright."
Long after Jim returned home, as he visited his wife's
grandmother, Mrs. Harris, she told him a night years before when she had
awakened in terror. Knowing Jim was in Vietnam, she had sensed he was in
trouble. She began praying for God to spare his life. Unable to kneel because
of arthritis, she lay prone on the floor, praying and reading her Bible all
Just before dawn she read Matthew 18:19-20. Then she
immediately called her Sunday school teacher, who got out of bed and went to
Mrs. Harris' house where together they claimed the Lord's promise as they
prayed for Jim until reassured by God's peace.
Having told Jim the story, Mrs. Harris opened her Bible
to show him where she had marked the passage. In the margin were the words --
"Jim, February 26, 1968."
I don't think we are nearly aware enough of how crucial
our prayers are for the lost and hurting. Sometimes we don't get to see the
fruit, but God hears and answers our prayers! Don't be discouraged today --
keep lifting your voice in intercession and expect great things!
Dear Lord, help us always be aware of how important it is
for us to talk to You in prayer. When we feel the tug by You help to stop and
pray. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
Proverbs 15:23 (ESV)
To make an apt answer is a joy to a man,
and a word in
season, how good it is!
A modern parable has been written about the tools of the
enemy that I believe we can really learn from.
"Some time ago, an advertisement appeared in which
the devil was putting all his tools up for sale. On the day of public
inspection, each one of his tools was marked with its selling price: Hatred,
Envy, Jealousy, Doubt, Lying, Pride, and so on, were each on the block. Set
apart, however, from all the rest of the pile, was a harmless-looking tool,
well-worn, but priced very high -- it was discouragement!"
Someone asked the devil, 'why is that one priced so
high?' He replied, 'Ah, that one is more useful to me than all the rest. With
it I can pry open a man's heart and enter, when I cannot get near him with any
other tools. Once inside, I can lead him any way I choose. The tool is very
worn because I use it on almost everyone, since few people know it belongs to
The enemy loves to sow discouragement -- but believers
have a tool much more powerful -- encouragement! We can speak a word into the
lives of those who desperately need to hear it: to the college student
adjusting to his new environment; to the missionary who may feel alone in the
harvest field; to the disillusioned newlywed young couple; to the forgotten
servants of God who labor in an obscure and difficult ministry; to the orphans
and the widows; to all those who need to hear a word in due season!
Dear Lord, we pray that we would be the people that You would
have us to be. Help us not give into the schemes of the Devil. In the Name of Jesus,
And the Lord will guide you continually
your desire in scorched places
and make your
and you shall be like a watered garden,
whose waters do
One of the great marvels of the Roman Empire was the
invention of the aqueduct system to provide water over vast distances. It was
an absolutely ingenious method which made use of gravity, with stone arches to
support the water channels. An aqueduct was built in 109 AD which carried water
to the city of Segovia for eighteen hundred years. For nearly sixty generations
this aqueduct provided cool water from the mountains above. But fairly
recently, it collapsed.
A well-intentioned citizen, observing the ancient
structure, remarked, "This aqueduct is so great a marvel that it ought to
be preserved for our children, as a museum piece. We shall relieve it of its
centuries-long labor." So the city decided to construct a modern water
system with iron pipes to carry the water, intending to give the aqueduct a
long-deserved rest. What they failed to realize, of course, was that attempting
to preserve the aqueduct by stopping the flow of water through it, assured its
rapid disintegration! As the sun beat down on the now dry mortar and stone, the
centuries old structure quickly began to fall apart. Amazingly, nearly two millennia
of service would not accomplish the destructive work of less than a century of
This story ought to really encourage us in Kingdom
work...since, continuing to allow Jesus’ living water to flow through us, we
are constantly renewed and preserved, rather than drying up with idleness.
Dear Lord, help us to stay focused and busy for You. Help
us not become idle and useless where we will fall apart. In the Name of Jesus,
And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have
anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive
you your trespasses.
I read a powerful anecdote and we wanted to share it.
"One of my teachers had each one of us bring a clear
plastic bag and a sack of potatoes. For every person we'd refuse to forgive in
our life, we were told to choose a potato, write on it the name and date, and
put it in the plastic bag. Some of our bags, as you can imagine, were quite
We were then told to carry this bag with us everywhere
for one week putting it beside our bed at night, on the car seat when driving,
next to our desk at work.
Naturally, the condition of the potatoes deteriorated to
a mushy nasty slime. The hassle of lugging this stinking thing around with us
made it clear what a foul and heavy weight we were carrying spiritually."
When we won't forgive others, we're really only hurting
ourselves. Let's let go of all our unforgiveness and release all our
"potatoes" to the Lord. We need to get free so that we are able to do
great things for Him!
Dear Lord, help us have an attitude of forgiveness. Help
us not carry a grudge against those around us. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
2 Corinthians 4:5-6 (ESV)
5 For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ
as Lord, with ourselves as your servants[a] for Jesus' sake. 6 For God, who
said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the
light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
Charles Spurgeon was a minister often accused of being
"controversial". One day a friend of Spurgeon's remarked, "So, I
hear you are in hot water again."
"No, I'm not the one in hot water," Spurgeon
answered. "The other fellows are. I'm the man who makes the water
We're living in amazing times. Wars are being waged.
Prophecy is being fulfilled. And what are we doing exactly?
More than ever before, we should be focusing on the
condition of our heart before the Lord and in prayer for God to open the eyes
of the blind. We should be talking about the truth of Messiah daily with those
who don't yet know Him. Who cares if people think it's controversial? This is
not the time to care what people think of us! This is the time to get the water
What's your spiritual temperature today? Is it causing
anybody to boil? Good! There's so much work to be done!
Dear Lord, as we live in these days help us be working
for You to bring the lost into the kingdom. Help us not be luke warm bur hot
today. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
10 If you will remain in this land, then I will build you
up and not pull you down; I will plant you, and not pluck you up; for I relent
of the disaster that I did to you. 11 Do not fear the king of Babylon, of whom
you are afraid. Do not fear him, declares the Lord, for I am with you, to save
you and to deliver you from his hand. 12 I will grant you mercy that he may
have mercy on you and let you remain in your own land.
As we read Scripture sometimes it can hit us pretty hard.
I believe there are words for all of us
God has called each of us to something specific and He
wants to plant us in a way that our roots can grow deep in Him and in that
particular calling. He wants us to become solely dependent on His nourishment
there, that we might grow to be strong, solid leaders with the capacity to
serve and guide those around us who are in need where He's called us.
The Lord warns us about being double-minded. We're
double-minded when become too busy to seek God's will for lives and the
empowerment to fulfill it. We're double-minded when we allow our fear and
anxiety to get in the way of us getting to and staying in that place to which
He's called us.
Let's not run from the Lord. He has so many blessings for
those who seek Him and follow after Him whole-heartedly. Let's give our all to
Him today and strive to be single minded in His calling upon our lives!
Dear Lord, we thank
You that You are always there to lead us and guide us. Help us be stead fast as
we read Your word so that we may be the people You have for us to be. In the
Name of Jesus, Amen.
Death and life are
in the power of the tongue,
and those who
love it will eat its fruits.
We talk a lot, don't we? But do we really say anything
important? Let us consider some of the greatest words known to mankind.
The Declaration of Independence -- 300 words. The
Gettysburg Address -- 266. The Lord's Prayer -- 56 words. Jesus' words to us,
the great commission, "Go ye" -- only 2 words!
On the other hand, not long ago, the U.S. government
issued an order setting the price of cabbage -- 26,911 words!
Let's master our tongues! With it we can speak life,
blessing, and encouragement to all those around us today!
Dear Lord, we pray that we would get a handle on our
tongue and use our words in a manner that would bring honor to You. In the Name
of Jesus, Amen.
When a man's ways please the Lord,
he makes even
his enemies to be at peace with him.
A young reporter approached an old man on his 100th
birthday. "Happy birthday, kind Sir! Can I bother you to answer one
question? In all your years, of what are you most proud?" he asked.
"Well," said the man, "I don't have a
single enemy in the world."
"Really?!" shouted the reporter, "That's
just incredible -- how inspiring to us all!"
"Yep," added the centenarian, "outlived
every one of 'em."
Sadly, each of us has acquired an enemy or two in our
lives. While it's our human nature to find fault in others and make an
occasional unnecessary enemy, sometimes it has nothing to do with us! What can
we do to make peace with enemies like those?
"He" is the operating word in the verse above. He,
that is, the Lord, makes even enemies be at peace with him. All we have to
worry about is making sure that our ways are pleasing to the Lord and He will
do the rest!
When our path is straight, and God is the focus of our
journey, then our ways will please Him and He will make even our enemies be at
peace with us.
Let's rededicate our lives to the Lord again today and
see Him bring the victory.
Dear Lord, we pray that as we journey along the way help
us keep our eyes on You. We thank You in advanced for the victory that we can
have in You. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon
you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.
Knowing He was about to depart, Jesus left His disciples
with a final command: stay in Jerusalem, and wait...for the promise. Of the
thousands who had witnessed His miraculous ministry and heard His amazing
teaching, and the hundreds that had actually seen Him after the resurrection,
we read in Acts that only 120 stayed and tarried until the promise arrived. But
these 120 were steadfast. They waited the full term...
What would have happened if they had left after the 4th
day? Or the 6th day? Or the 9th day? They would have missed the promise and the
amazing blessing that came with it. But those 120 believers stayed - they
stayed and pressed in until the Holy Spirit came!
Do you want the fullness of the Spirit in your life?
Continue pressing on. Wait with relentless faith and patience. Perseverance is
often the critical factor in receiving the promises of God. Our Lord will
fulfill every good promise in His perfect time.
Dear Lord, help us to continue to press on. Help us be faithful
as we serve You. In The Name of Jesus, Amen.
24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does
them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain
fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it
did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who
hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who
built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the
winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of
Here in Florida we always have the chance of being hit by
a tropical storm or hurricane during the summer months. Back in 2004 we were
hit by 4 hurricanes and we were very thankful that our house was built to the
standards that were set so it would stand strong even in the storms.
In this passage, Jesus is talking to Jews, of course.
They were familiar with the rain and how vigorously it comes down these
seasons. They knew not to build their houses on sand -- or else they would
quickly collapse when the rains came!
The Lord is warning us about building our houses on weak
ground. He knew that stormy seasons would come and He wants us to be prepared!
We don't want to be one of the many whose houses will collapse because they
were built on fame, fortune and other things of this world. We must be careful
to build our house only upon Him. Even building our houses upon seemingly
innocent things like family, tradition and good works is dangerous. We want to
be of those who've established our foundation upon the ROCK of the truth of His
Word and who will be able to weather the coming storms because of it!
Are there storms raging about you today? Let's completely
built our life upon the Rock.
Dear Lord, help us to focus on building our life upon
You. So that when the storms of life come we can stand firm. In the Name of
According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled
master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let
each one take care how he builds upon it.
An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. His contractor
was sorry to see such a good employee go, and asked him if he would build just
one last house as a personal favor. The carpenter agreed but his heart was not
in it. He resorted to bad workmanship and using cheap materials.
When the carpenter finished his work, the contractor came
over and handed the front-door key to the carpenter. "I appreciate all the
hard work you’ve done for me all these years and I’d like you to have this
house as a token of my gratitude.”
The carpenter was shocked! If only he had only known he
was building his own house, he would have worked much harder! Now he owned a
house that wasn’t built very well.
We should think of ourselves as carpenters and our lives
here on earth, as our house. Each day we hammer a nail, place a board, or erect
a wall, we must build with care! It is the only life we will ever build. And
what we do here will count for eternity!
Our lives today are the result of our attitudes and
choices in the past. Our lives tomorrow will be the result of our attitudes and
the choices we make today! Let’s build to the best of our ability.
Dear Lord, we pray today that we would take what you have
given to use and do our very best to build the life You have for us. IN the
Name of Jesus, Amen.
So that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who
sees in secret will reward you.
I came across this very powerful story about one of the
most influential men of God in my life, D.L.Moody, the book is named A Call to
Excellence by Gary Inrig.
A large group of European pastors came to one of D. L.
Moody's Northfield Bible Conferences in Massachusetts in the late 1800s.
Following the European custom of the time, each guest put his shoes outside his
room to be cleaned by the hall servants overnight. But of course this was
America and there were no hall servants.
Walking the dormitory halls that night, Moody saw the
shoes and determined not to embarrass his brothers. He mentioned the need to
some ministerial students who were there, but met with only silence or pious
excuses. Moody returned to the dorm, gathered up the shoes, and, alone in his
room, the world's only famous evangelist began to clean and polish the shoes.
Only the unexpected arrival of a friend in the midst of the work revealed the
When the foreign visitors opened their doors the next
morning, their shoes were shined. They never knew by whom. Moody told no one,
but his friend told a few people, and during the rest of the conference,
different men volunteered to shine the shoes in secret.
I don’t know about you but I'm humbled, how about you?
Many of us want to be great ministers for the Lord. We want our names and our
works to be remembered. But let's never forget the true ministry of the Lord.
Not only would have Jesus shined those shoes in secret, He would have returned
to wash their feet too!
Have you been asking the Lord to use you? Here you have
it! Shine some one's dingy shoes, give a gift to someone in need, love on
someone hard to love -- but don't tell the world -- do it in secret! You can be
sure that the Lord sees these things! And He will open up more opportunities
for you to do even greater things for Him! Guess what -- there's so much work
to be done!
Dear Lord, open our eyes to ways that we can be a servant
for you. Help u snot look for the recognition for ourselves but for You. In the
Name of Jesus, Amen.
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to
your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to
those who ask him!”
Charles Finney wrote about how God gave him mighty
infillings of the Holy Spirit. He said, "These infillings went through me,
as it seemed, body and soul. I immediately found myself endued with such power
from on high that a few words dropped here and there to individuals were the
means of their immediate conversion. My words seemed to fasten like barbed
arrows in the souls of men. They cut like a sword. They broke the heart like a
hammer. Multitudes can attest to this...Sometimes I would find myself in a
great measure empty of this power. I would go and visit, and find that I made
no saving impression. I would exhort and pray with the same results. I would
they set apart a day for private fasting and prayer...after humbling myself and
crying out for help, the power would return upon me with all its freshness.
This has been the experience of my life."
D.L Moody said, "I believe firmly that the moment
our hearts are emptied of pride and selfishness and ambition and everything
that is contrary to God's law, the Holy Spirit will fill every corner of our
hearts. But if we are full of pride and conceit and ambition and the world,
there is no room for the Spirit of God. We must be emptied before we can be
Let's get right with the Lord today. Let's set aside some
time to get before Him and empty ourselves of the world's influences and our
selfish ways that we might be filled with His power and anointing! There's so
much work to be done!
Dear Lord, help us empty our self of the things of this
world so that we may be completely filled by You. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
Philippians 3:14-15 (ESV)
14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward
call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are mature think this way,
and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you.
When Paul wrote to the Philippian church he spoke of
pressing forward for the prize of the high calling. Though he was physically
content whether rich or poor, the apostle was not content with his spiritual
condition, but constantly seeking a deeper, more intimate and fruitful walk
with the Lord. Paul had great expectations for his own lifetime, and he
accomplished tremendous things, yet if he'd known while writing his epistles
that they would edify the lives of billions of people for 2000 years, I think
he'd be saying to himself, "This I could never even have imagined!"
D.L. Moody once said; "We honor God when we ask for
great things. It is a humiliating thing to think that we are satisfied with
very small results."
Why do we honor God when we ask for great things, or
expect more from Him? Simply because He is great, far greater than we can
imagine, but also because we are made in His image. His greatness is glorified
by what He performs through our lives. If we desire great things, it's because
we're reflecting His awesome nature. It is in us by nature to seek more and
greater things -- just as Paul and D.L Moody did. We should not be ashamed of
it when our motives are pure, because our Lord will be glorified all the more.
Not seeking fame or fortune, but the glory of Jesus crucified and
risen, will be a lifetime of pressing forward, and accomplishing more than we
ever could have imagined!
Allow your mind and your heart to think and to dream of
great accomplishments for our Lord.
Dear Lord, we ask for great things and look forward to
how You are going to fulfill more than we could imagine. In the Name of Jesus,
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word
D.L. Moody spent many hours praying for faith. He once
said, "If all the time I have spent praying for faith was put together, it
would be months. I thought that someday faith was going to come down and strike
me like lightening. But faith did not come. Then one day I read in the 10th
chapter of Romans, "So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word
of God." I now opened my Bible and began to read God's Word and faith has
been growing ever since."
Much of what believers describe as 'faith' has nothing to
do with Biblical faith. Our faith must not be based on emotion, or want, and
not on the latest Christian seminar. But it must be centered on God's Word, on
Messiah, His death and resurrection, His salvation. The Living Word is the
eternal, everlasting love of God which has been poured out upon our lives.
Read, hear, apply and live the Word, and you will grow
strong in faith.
Dear Lord, give us the strength to read, apply and live
the Word that You have given us. Help to stay in Your word daily. In the Name
of Jesus, Amen.
For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That
is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.
I read this story tonight and it got me thinking.
When a power plant in a tiny village in Alaska caught
fire one evening, a local fire truck stood, unused, in perfectly working
condition as the plant burnt to the ground. Damage to the plant was great. And
why did this state of the art firetruck go unused? So sad... simply nobody in the
town knew how to operate it.
It made me think. Amidst the everyday fires we face in
our lives, God has given us precious, perfectly good working, state of the art
promises. Unfortunately, it seems that either we are ignorant of them or fail
to know how to operate them!
D.L. Moody says that many of the promises God has given
to His people, to us, "seem to be pretty pictures of an ideal peace and
rest, but are not appropriated as practical helps in daily life. And not one of
these promises is more neglected that the assurance of salvation. An open Bible
places them within reach of all, and we may appropriate the blessing which such
a knowledge brings.”
Are you burning to put God's promises to work in your
life today?? I know I am! Let's get into God's Word, get to know the depth of
His commitment to us, and put His wonderful promises to action! The fires are
raging and there's so much work to be done!
Dear Lord, help us be on fire for You. Help us dig into
Your Word so that we may know what You have for each of us. In the Name of
His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful
servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter
into the joy of your master.’
In the mid 1850's a troubled teenager from Northfield,
Massachusetts moved to Boston to try to find work. He hadn't gone to school
beyond the fifth grade; he couldn't spell, his grammar was awful and his
manners were brash and crude. Thankfully, an uncle took him on as a shoe
salesman--on condition that he be obedient and that he attend church.
The boy had been raised in a Unitarian church which
denied the full divinity of Messiah and did not emphasize human need for
salvation from sins. At his uncle's church, he began learning about these
things, but decided that he wanted to enjoy the pleasures of the world and wait
until just before he died to give His life to the Lord. However, through the
kindness and persistence of his Sunday School teacher, Edward Kimball, the
rebellious teen was encouraged to continue coming to church and study the Bible
regularly. Kimball said he had never seen anyone whose mind was as spiritually
On April 21, 1855, Kimball decided to pay a special visit
to the boy at his uncle's shoe store in order to ask if he would commit his
life to the Lord. The boy listened closely and gave his heart to God that day.
Immediately he began sharing his faith with others. Later, the young man moved
to Chicago. He wandered the streets to find other young boys to bring to his
Church. He had a passion for saving souls and determined never to let a day
pass without telling someone about the gospel. The boy's name was D.L.
Moody....and he became a great man of faith.
Among his many achievements on either side of the
Atlantic was the founding of Moody Bible Institute. In fact, to this day, Moody
Bible Institute and the Moody Broadcasting Network continue to reach thousands
of souls on a daily basis! It was estimated that before D.L. Moody passed away
that as many as a million souls were brought to the Lord.
What a testimony Moody's is! But we overlook the fact
that it was a faithful Sunday school teacher's obedience and persistence that
changed the course of history! We may think we are doing very little for the
Lord... that we're merely teaching a few kids at Sunday school. But the Lord
can use anyone in His service -- those whose hearts are given to Him.
Be an Edward Kimball -- reach out and touch someone today
for Him -- through one touch, you may be touching future millions.
Dear Lord, we thank You for our Sunday School teachers
today. We thank You that they take the time to study and share Your great love
with those You bring to their class. Continue to bless them. In The Name of
1 Corinthians 2:4-5 (ESV)
4 and my speech and my message were not in plausible
words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 so that
your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
Most people have never heard of "Auntie Cooke",
but I guarantee you that you'll get to know her in glory! She arrived in Chicago in 1868 as a perfect
stranger, but she immediately became involved in D.L. Moody's church when he
was just thirty-one years old. She
described him years later, as a 'diamond in the rough', and someone who needed
the divine unction and power.
During a camp meeting in 1871, she felt an intense burden
to pray for Moody. So, along with her
friend, Miss Hawxhurst, Auntie Cooke began praying for him that he'd be filled
with the anointing power of the Holy Spirit. While Moody was unsure of this need,
nevertheless, he asked the two ladies to meet with him every Friday afternoon
and they began to earnestly pray.
Moody's hunger increased for the power of the Spirit and the Friday
before the Great Chicago Fire, Ms. Cooke testified, "Mr. Moody's agony was
so great that he rolled on the floor and in the midst of many tears and groans
cried to God to be baptized with the Holy Ghost and fire."
It was shortly thereafter that Moody went to New York to
raise funds for the rebuilding of the church that was destroyed in the
fire. While walking down Wall Street in
New York, Moody was hit with power! In fact, Moody recalled how he cried,
"Hold, Lord, it is enough!" Throughout his life, he reluctantly
talked about that experience, but Moody testified how this was the turning
point in his ministry.
Moody stated, "I went to preaching again, the
sermons were not different; I did not present any new truths, and yet hundreds
were converted. I would not now be placed back where I was before that blessed
experience if you should give me all the world."
The lasting legacy of D.L. Moody's ministry was connected
to two ladies that most will never read stories about. Do you want to have a lasting legacy? Become an intercessor!
Power only comes through prayer – and without any power –
how are we going to change the world?
Dear Lord, help us to be people of prayer. Help us take the
time each day to earnestly pray for those around us. In the Name of Jesus,
I appeal to you therefore, brothers,[a] by the mercies of
God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God,
which is your spiritual worship.
D.L. Moody tells a story about having heard Pastor Henry
Varley once say that, "The world has yet to see what God will do with and
for and through the man who is fully and wholly consecrated to Him."
As Moody pondered the pastor's words, He realized
something. Pastor Varley did not say that God would use an intelligent person.
He didn't say an educated person, nor did he say a person who was ultimately
gifted. What the wise pastor said was that the person with whom God will work
with and for and through will be the person "who is fully and wholly
consecrated to Him".
This radically changed Moody's ministry. God isn’t looking for people with amazing
minds or hands or voices or computer skills. He’s not looking for those who are
wearing the nicest suits or dresses at church. And He’s not looking for the
people with the highest grade point averages at the local Christian College.
What God is really looking for, are people who are simply sold out for Him!
One of the great secrets to a successful walk with the
Lord, is understanding total commitment to Jesus. But being totally committed
requires us to daily take up our cross -- leave the past behind us -- and despite
all the obstacles the enemy tries to throw in our path, press forward for the
Lord and His work! Let's consecrate ourselves to the Lord again today.
Dear Lord, help us work on being successful. Help us be totally
committed to You in all that we do. In The Name of Jesus, Amen.
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to
your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to
those who ask him!
D.L. Moody has been influential in my personal life. Since attending Moody Bible Institute in the
80’s I have studied and read about his life and ministry in the 1800's. One of
the stories I read was about how D.L. Moody was preparing to lead a revival
throughout England to which an elderly pastor protested and said, "Why do
we need this 'Mr. Moody'? He's uneducated, inexperienced, etc. Who does he
think he is anyway? Does he think he has a monopoly on the Holy Spirit?"
A younger, yet wiser pastor stood up and responded,
"No, but the Holy Spirit has a monopoly on Mr. Moody."
Do you truly want to be monopolized by the Holy Spirit?
Let's face it -- the degree of fullness of the Spirit of God is in direct
proportion to the intensity of our true desire. The reality of the
spirit-filled life is -- we have as much of God as we truly want.
Let's allow the Holy Spirit to monopolize our lives and
in doing so -- we'll be empowered to do the great things God has called us to
do in these days!
Dear Lord, Help us let You monopolize our life and the
things that we do. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work
for his good pleasure.
God used D.L. Moody in a mighty way. Even though he only
had an 8th grade education he changed the world for the better. Thousands have
come to the Lord through his ministry and the fruit has remained much after his
Some of you have heard of R.A. Torrey, an equally
anointed man who worked closely with Moody and knew him well. He gave a sermon
illustrating the seven reasons for Moody's great anointing and success for the
Lord and I wanted to share these with you. My wife was moved to tears of
conviction when we read them last night.
1. Moody was a fully surrendered man, he held nothing
back from the Lord (...they loved not their lives unto the death. -- Revelation
2. He was a man of much prayer (Pray without ceasing. --
1 Thes. 5:17).
3. He was a deep and practical student of the Bible
(Study to shew thyself approved unto God... -- 2 Timothy 2:15).
4. He was a humble man (Be not wise in your own
conceits... -- Romans 12:16).
5. He was not a lover of money (For the love of money is
the root of all evil... -- 1 Timothy 6:10).
6. He had a consuming passion for the salvation of the
lost (Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
7. And he was endued with Power from on High (... until
ye be endued with power from on high. -- Luke 24:49).
If we want to bear much lasting fruit for the Lord, I
think this is a surefire way to go about it. I know my heart is convicted, how
Let's strive to look at these areas of our lives and ask
the Lord to empower us to make good changes! There's so much work to be done!!
Dear Lord, we pray
that you would give us the power to make good changes in this world. In the
Name of Jesus, Amen.
15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket,
but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let
your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give
glory to your Father who is in heaven.
D. L. Moody told the story of a man who was crossing the
Atlantic by ship. He was terribly sick and confined to his cabin. One night he
heard the cry “Man overboard!” He felt that there was nothing he could do to
help, but at second thought, he said to himself, “I guess I can at least put my
lantern in the porthole.” He struggled to his feet and hung the light so it
shined out into the darkness.
The next day he learned that the person who was rescued
said, “I was going down in the dark night for the last time, when someone put a
light in a porthole. As it shone on my hand, a sailor in a lifeboat grabbed it
and pulled me in."
All of us have weaknesses -- and times of weakness. The
fact of the matter is, though, that weak or not, we need to muster up the strength
to put our lights in our portholes for the sake of the dying and the lost among
us. It’s so tempting to sulk in our weaknesses, and stay in our beds -- but God
expects more of us. He has given us the strength to do all things -- even move
mountains! There are so many people around us sinking in despair. But God has
chosen us to reach out and light up their lives!
Let's do something extraordinary for the Lord today. Be
bold, speak up! Let’s get beyond our weaknesses and light up the darkness
Dear Lord, help us do something extraordinary for You
today. Give us the strength to be what You want us to be today. In the Name of
6 Will you not revive us again,
people may rejoice in you?
7 Show us your steadfast love, O Lord,
and grant us
D.L. Moody was on vacation in England from his ministry
in Chicago. At one point during his sabbatical there, a local pastor prevailed
upon Moody to speak at his parish church. So D.L. went to preach the next
Sunday morning. That afternoon he recorded in his journal that it was the
deadest crowd he had ever seen and the only thing worse than preaching to those
people was that he had promised to speak again the same night.
But that night, midway through his sermon something
happened. The people started to come to life, and Moody felt compelled to ask
if anyone would like to become a Christian. Many people stood up. He was taken
aback, "Maybe you don't understand what I am asking. So when we are
dismissed if you want to become a Christian come over to this little room and
meet with me." When the service was over, D.L went to the room and it was
packed; and many became believers.
Now he was on vacation, and so next day, Moody boarded a
train for Ireland...but the Lord had other plans. Disembarking in Ireland he
found a message awaiting him, "Come back. Revival has broken out." So
Moody returned to the church and preached for 10 straight nights and over 400
people came to the Lord. Moody was perplexed. How could he have known that an 80
year old widow named Mary Ann Adeland had read one of his sermons in the
newspaper and begun praying every day that God would bring D.L. Moody to her
We might well wonder what this thing is about
prayer...especially prayer in the secret place. How does it work? Why does it
work? A little old widow's love and concern for her spiritually dead neighbors
inspires her to pray relentlessly and specifically, and the vacation plans of a
great revivalist are adjusted for a local harvest, a God- orchestrated vacation
revival for D.L. Moody, right in her home town! Believers pray because they
love, and little passionate souls like Mary Ann Adeland are hidden gems in the
Lord's crown. How many spiritually dead neighbors do you have?
Dear Lord, we pray that we would have our eyes open for
those around us that need Your love. Help us pray for them that their hearts
will be softened to hear Your love. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
But now our strength is dried up, and there is nothing at
all but this manna to look at.
I am a big Keith Green fan. He sang a great song about
the children of Israel in the wilderness complaining to Moses that they
"Wannna go back to Egypt".
In our verse, God had been sending Manna from heaven to
feed them. You would think that the Israelites would remain in awe of how God
kept raining down this special heavenly delicacy that was able to feed
thousands and thousands of people. But after a while it just became
commonplace, even boring. Every morning they would witness God's miraculous
provision right before their very eyes, yet they wanted something else,
At times, even we can get accustomed to our blessings so
quickly, can't we?!
Emerson said that if the stars came out only once a year,
everybody would stay up all night to behold them. But we have seen the stars so
often that we don't even bother to look anymore!
Let's be sure not to take God's provisions lightly though
we see them on a daily basis!
Let's examine our hearts today, and purpose to appreciate
the goodness of God's provision upon our lives. Truly, we are blessed and we
thank you Lord for your goodness!
Dear Lord, help us not get accustom to the things around
us. Help us always be thankful for the things You have done for us. In the Name
of Jesus, Amen.