WELS Daily Devotions

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Find inspiration, comfort and spiritual growth each day in these 5 to 10 minute devotions from God’s Word.
Updated: 1 hour 2 min ago

Perfection – October 24, 2021

17 hours 6 min ago

Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledge as our apostle and high priest. He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God’s house.
Hebrews 3:1,2

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Daily Devotion – October 24, 2021

Devotion based on Hebrews 3:1,2
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211024dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

In the 1986 fighter pilot movie “Top Gun,” the theme was the need to be perfect. The fighter pilots often heard the phrase “there are no points for second place.” That meant as a fighter pilot you needed to be perfect because anything less meant that you would likely die in an encounter with the enemy.

We live in a very competitive world. People strive to be the best they can be. But how good do we have to be for God to accept us? How can we reach the level of perfection that God demands?

The truth is that if we try to be perfect before God, we’re always going to fail. It is the hard cold reality of sin. God demands that we be perfect. Yet just one wrong deed or a single bad thought causes us to fail.

But there is hope in Jesus! “He was faithful to the one who appointed him.” God appointed his eternal Son, Jesus, to be the world’s Savior. Jesus accepted that mission and accomplished it. He left heaven and lived a perfect life here on earth. Yes, he never sinned once. That’s important because God, in his love for us, credits Jesus’ perfection to us. Jesus was also faithful to his heavenly Father by submitting himself to death. He didn’t deserve to die because he was perfect, but he died because we are not. God laid the guilt of all our imperfections—our sins—on Jesus for which he paid the penalty of death in our place.

By faith in our faithful Savior, we will stand before God with the assurance of a blessed eternity in heaven!

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Prayer:
Thank you, Jesus, for being faithful to your Father and saving me from my sins. Keep my eyes fixed on you and the hope of eternal life you provide. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Peace in Our Hearts – October 23, 2021

Sat, Oct 23, 2021 - 01:00am

We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:1

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Daily Devotion – October 23, 2021

Devotion based on Romans 5:1
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211023dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Do you know the story of the little boy who loved the Lord Jesus with all his heart? The boy had a very serious heart problem, so serious that the surgeon found it necessary to operate on his heart. The surgeon told the boy, “Tomorrow morning, I will open up your heart….” “You will find Jesus there,” the little boy interrupted. Being a bit annoyed, the surgeon took the boy by the hand and explained, “I will cut your heart open. I have to see how much damage has been done…” “But when you open up my heart, you will find Jesus in there,” the little boy said again.

The next day following the surgery, the surgeon recorded the notes “…damaged aorta, damaged pulmonary vein, muscle degeneration. No hope for transplant or a cure.” Tears flowed from his eyes as he recalled the faith in this little boy’s heart. When he awoke from the surgery, he whispered to the surgeon, “Did you cut open my heart?” “Yes,” said the surgeon. “What did you find?” asked the boy. “I found Jesus there,” said the surgeon.

In this story a well-educated and learned surgeon learned from a child. He learned what it meant to have child-like faith and to believe in Jesus so that even in the face of death, we need not worry but be at peace and have the confident hope that we will be with him in heaven. All this is because Jesus suffered, died, and rose again to pay for all of our sins.

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Prayer:
Lord Jesus, give me a child-like faith, a faith that does not doubt or question what God’s plans are for me, but a faith which trusts his precious promises for my physical and eternal well-being. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Ouch – October 22, 2021

Fri, Oct 22, 2021 - 01:00am

[Jesus] said, “Go, sell everything you have . . . Then come, follow me.” At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.
Mark 10:21,22

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Daily Devotion – October 22, 2021

Devotion based on Mark 10:21,22
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211022dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

You have an area on your left side that has become uncomfortable. You go to a doctor. The doctor seems to examine everything except the area in question, “I see no problems. You look just fine,” he says. As you go home, you’re uneasy. For while you’ve just been to a doctor who’s given you a clean bill of health, you sense he has failed to put his finger on the problem.

In Mark chapter 10, the man who approaches Jesus presumes that his spiritual health is in good shape. He believes he has lived a decent life. He does not see any glaring problems in his relationship with God.

Jesus, however, is the Great Physician. He conducts his diagnosis of this man in a way that the man discovers he is hurting where he did not even realize he was hurting. The man happens to be quite wealthy. When Jesus challenges him to part with all his wealth for the sake of following Jesus, the man is crestfallen. He walks away sad. In love, the Great Physician has placed his finger on the area that hurts. He has gotten the man to say, “Ouch.”

In my sinful weakness, I often possess a genius for sliding into the presumption that my spiritual health is in pretty good condition. Sure, there are garden-variety sins here and there, but my self-diagnosis frequently comes up with a clean bill of health.

And this is why we need our Savior. Through his Word and his hand in my life, our Great Physician puts his finger on that area of my life where I am truly hurting. In love, he gets me to say, “Ouch.”

Is this pleasant when he does this? No, it isn’t. But Jesus loves me enough to do it. For when he causes me to wince, I then realize even more how much I need his blood to wash me clean, to forgive my sin, to bring me his healing.

And through faith in him, that’s what I have—you and I both.

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Prayer:
Great Physician, you make me realize how much I need you. Thank you for the healing I possess in your blood. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Tender Subject – October 21, 2021

Thu, Oct 21, 2021 - 01:00am

Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.
Hebrews 13:4

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Daily Devotion – October 21, 2021

Devotion based on Hebrews 13:4
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211021dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Today’s Bible verse touches on a tender subject. Many of us carry deep emotional wounds from the misuse of God’s gifts of marriage and sex. These wounds may be self-inflicted. Or we may be carrying them due to the actions of others. Our Lord cares about us enough, however, to speak to us about it in loving candor.

The Lord tells us, “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure”—the “marriage bed” referring to God’s wedding gift of sexual intimacy. Our Heavenly Father is clear on this matter. His wedding gift of sexual intimacy is for a husband and wife to enjoy within the exclusive security of marriage—not before it and not outside of it. To emphasize his serious concern about this, his Word goes on to say, for God will judge the adulterer” (that is, anyone who is unfaithful in marriage) “and all the sexually immoral” (that is, anyone who misuses God’s wedding gift of sexual intimacy in any way, whether that person is married or single).

Several decades ago, our culture, to a great degree, bought into the premise that what God’s Word says about marriage is unnecessary. The implied promise was that if you threw off the old notions about marriage and sex, your life would be happier, healthier, more pleasurable, more free.

Sadly, the results are in: broken homes, broken trust, emotional scars for both parents and children, resentment, isolation, loneliness. Such is the nature of sin, of course—your sin and mine. It promises a better life if we only ignore God’s will for our lives. But sin can never deliver on its promise.

Jesus, however, does. Always. In our place, he lived a life of purity, a life of perfect obedience to God’s will. At the cross, his blood washed away our every unfaithfulness, our every dark sin. When we fix our eyes on him in repentant hearts, all is forgiven. All!

Which empowers us to begin again when it comes to our approach to marriage. All to the glory of our Savior.

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Prayer:
Forgive me, Lord, for where I have fallen in this area of my life. Empower me to trust your will. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Welcome – October 20, 2021

Wed, Oct 20, 2021 - 01:00am

Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers.
Hebrews 13:2

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Daily Devotion – October 20, 2021

Devotion based on Hebrews 13:2
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211020dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Sometimes a simple book title can say all that needs to be said. In 2019 an author by the name of Alisha Anderson came out with a book with just such a title. The title of her book is The Lost Art of Hospitality.

Many observers of our present culture have remarked that more and more people seem to feel uncomfortable when it comes to practicing hospitality on a personal level. There could be many social reasons for this, of course. Perhaps the “professional” side of hospitality has been elbowing out the personal side. Perhaps the frantic pace of Twenty-first Century life has discouraged personal hospitality. Or perhaps the term coined back in the 90s, “cocooning,” which describes the tendency for people to curl up by themselves within their own homes—perhaps that is making an impact too.

Whatever the reasons, you and I do well to pause and give this some thought. Have I given in to the self-absorbed culture to such a degree that I no longer focus on making someone else feel appreciated, accepted, comfortable, welcome? To the degree that I have fallen short in this area of my life, I need to come to repentance before the God who calls upon me to do just that in my relationships with others.

And this is where Jesus comes in. Wherever he traveled, he took deliberate care to make others feel valued and welcome. Jesus did this on our behalf. He also went to the cross to wash us clean of all of our self-absorbed moments. Through faith in him, we stand forgiven, embraced, accepted.

How can I thank him for this? I don’t necessarily need to go out and compel a family to stay in my home for a week. But maybe I could invite someone out for a cup of coffee and give that person my undivided attention. Or invite someone out to a park with a couple of fast-food milkshakes. Or maybe I could open my humble home for a couple of hours to share a pizza. Whatever I do, I do it to thank the Lord Jesus for all he has done to care about me.

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Prayer:
Lord Jesus, thank you for seeking me out. Move me to show the same kind of care for others. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

The Builder – October 19, 2021

Tue, Oct 19, 2021 - 01:00am

For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything.
Hebrews 3:4

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Daily Devotion – October 19, 2021

Devotion based on Hebrews 3:4
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211019dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Near Iceland lies a cluster of islands called the Faroe Islands. In these islands stands one of the oldest continuously occupied houses in the world. It’s called “The Viking Farmhouse.” It’s a cozy, wood-framed home. The family currently occupying the house has had it for some time—17 generations to be exact. The Viking Farmhouse is about one thousand years old.

There are no records that survive for who designed it, gathered the materials, or built the house. Its very existence, however, declares that someone did.

In the Bible, God engages us in various ways when it comes to his existence. In the New Testament book of Hebrews, he invites us to stand in front of a house—any house—and give that house a good look. As we stand before that house, we may not see the architect or contractor; we may not see the carpenters, plumbers, and electricians who were once there. However, the very existence of the house gives testimony to their work.

With that, God invites us to take in something a bit bigger. He invites us to look at the creation around us and give it a good look. Look at the heavens. Look at the stars. Look at the precise orbit of our planet around the sun. Look at the breathtaking orchestration of our ecosystem. Look at the overwhelming sophistication of just one single cell in our human bodies. God invites us to look at all of this, for it all points to him. He is the builder.

But he is far more than just the builder. When humanity, the crown of his creation, chose to sever its relationship with God, God did what he had to do to bring us home. The builder became one of us. He walked among us in the person of Jesus Christ. As our substitute, Jesus lived the life we failed to live. He suffered and died for our every wrong, all to set things right.

That’s the love the builder has for you.

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Prayer:
Lord, thank you for creating me. And thank you for saving me. I am doubly yours. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

The Beach – October 18, 2021

Mon, Oct 18, 2021 - 01:00am

Seek the LORD and live.
Amos 5:6

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Daily Devotion – October 18, 2021

Devotion based on Amos 5:6
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211018dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Colonel George Taylor had a problem. It was D-Day. His men had just landed on a Normandy beach to begin the invasion of Nazi-occupied France. The problem was that his men felt trapped on the beach. Their position was alive with enemy gunfire, and everyone was afraid to move forward.

But above the roar of gunfire and the explosion of mortars and the cries of the wounded, Colonel Taylor simply shouted this: “There are only two kinds of men on this beach—those who are dead, and those who are about to die. Let’s get out of here.”

His simple logic worked. His men realized that the beach meant only death. The sooner they moved forward and moved off the beach, the sooner they would find life.

In the Old Testament book of Amos, God’s people found themselves on a similar beach of sorts. It was not a beach threatened with gunfire, however. Rather it was a beach of their own making. It was a beach of their own sin. In spiritual terms, there were only two kinds of people on their beach—those who were dead, and those who were about to die.

The Lord, however, loved his people. That love moved him to speak to them in a clarity that was both piercing and beautiful. “Seek the LORD and live,” he said.

How about you? Do you feel as though you are trapped on a beach right now—a beach of your own making? If so, perhaps you know exactly how you ended up on this beach, or perhaps you don’t. Either way, you sense that this awful beach of yours is not where you’re supposed to be. And what was true of that beach in Normandy is true of your beach too. On it, there are only two kinds of people— “those who are dead, and those who are about to die.”

But Jesus has come to the rescue. On your behalf, he has lived a sinless life. On your behalf, he has washed you clean at the cross. Now, through his Word, he proclaims to you his gospel invitation: “Seek the LORD and live.” The way off your beach has arrived. His name is Jesus.

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Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you are my rescue. I am yours. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

God Looks at the Heart – October 17, 2021

Sun, Oct 17, 2021 - 01:00am

But now your kingdom will not endure; the LORD has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him ruler of his people, because you have not kept the LORD’s command.”
1 Samuel 13:14

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Daily Devotion – October 17, 2021

Devotion based on 1 Samuel 13:14
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211017dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Researchers claim that we form our first impressions of people in the first six seconds after we meet them. We form our opinions quickly, based on what we see—facial appearance, age, skin color, clothing, and the like.

This is how it was for the people of Israel and King Saul. Based on a quick first impression, many Israelites concluded that Saul would be an excellent king. There he was, the perfect physical specimen. What more could they want in a ruler? The peoples’ first impressions, however, were greatly misleading. Soon Saul’s heart became corrupt. As time went by, Saul hardened his heart more and more until royal convenience and expediency took full precedence over obedience to God. Finally, the Lord had enough. God would choose another king—one after his own heart.

God sent the prophet Samuel to the house of Jesse to choose the new king. As Samuel observed seven of Jesse’s sons, he looked only at the outward appearance. Samuel looked at each of them thinking that he was God’s choice, but the Lord said, “Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7).

When the last son, David, was brought in, Samuel saw a handsome young man with honest and alert eyes, the picture of health, but his youthful good looks did not suggest one strong enough to rule Israel. But God knew better. David’s humility and trusting heart were exactly what God was looking for!

What does God see when he looks at us? Does he see hearts that admit their sin and seek God’s forgiveness? Does he see faith that looks to Jesus’ cross for pardon? Does he see people who are willing to follow Jesus as faithful disciples? If so, then we are people after God’s own heart!

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Prayer:
Lord, forgive me for the times I have followed my own sinful ways rather than your holy ways. Give me your heart. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Compassion – October 16, 2021

Sat, Oct 16, 2021 - 01:00am

Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.
Matthew 9:35,36

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Daily Devotion – October 16, 2021

Devotion based on Matthew 9:35,36
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211016dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Compassion. There often isn’t much of it in our dog-eat-dog world. Survival of the fittest. Win at all costs. Look out only for yourself. Climb the corporate ladder no matter who you have to step on. Show compassion? Ha! That’s for the weak.

But our Bible reading for today tells us that Jesus had compassion on people when he lived in this compassionless world. He healed the sick and injured. Most compassionately of all, he preached and taught the good news of free forgiveness and eternal life to souls burdened by guilt and sin.

You are on the receiving end of God’s compassion. In compassion, God sent his Son in the flesh to save you from the guilt and punishment of your sins. In compassion, God brought you into his family through his Holy Spirit who brought you to faith. In compassion, God daily protects you with his angels and provides for all your needs. In compassion, God hears all your prayers and is preparing a room for you in heaven. In compassion, God is working out everything that happens to you (even the bad and sad) for your eternal good.

God has shown you compassion. With an appreciative heart, go and show others compassion with your words and actions. You can’t heal the sick as Jesus did. But you can help ease someone’s pain. Above all, you can tell a burdened soul about a compassionate and forgiving God.

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Prayer:
God, thank you for treating me daily with compassion. Help me to share your compassionate love with others. May they see your compassion and love through me. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Not Ashamed – October 15, 2021

Fri, Oct 15, 2021 - 01:00am

Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.
Hebrews 2:11

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Daily Devotion – October 15, 2021

Devotion based on Hebrews 2:11
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211015dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Real Men Love Jesus. The slogan appears on t-shirts, hoodies, coffee cups, and drink coasters. But why sell such items? Who would purchase them?

It’s a bit of a reaction to an unfortunate trend. Christians are often pressured to feel ashamed of Jesus and to hide their faith in Jesus. The Real Men Love Jesus slogan is a marketing strategy designed to reverse that trend. It’s time for Christians to let their light shine, not hide it. Don’t be ashamed of Jesus!

But have you ever wondered, “Could Jesus be ashamed of us?” After all, we are part of a human race that seems so self-absorbed. There’s so much chaos and disharmony in our communities. News outlets run stories about riots, wars, assaults, and trafficking. Could Jesus love a world like this?

On a more personal note, I have a good deal of chaos and disharmony in my own heart. I’m supposed to love Jesus above all else. In reality, I’ve set my heart on so many other things. I’m supposed to trust Jesus. Instead, I stress myself out with worry or try to take matters into my own hands. I’m supposed to honor Jesus by the things I think, say, and do. Oh, how I’ve failed! Could Jesus love a person like me?

He could. In fact, he does! John 3:16 reminds us that God loved the world so much, he sent Jesus to be our Savior. Jesus didn’t walk away from our self-absorbed humanity but willingly came running to our rescue. He took all the selfishness, sin, dishonor, and chaos of our hearts and communities—he took it all to the cross. And there on the cross, he suffered and died and made a perfect payment.

The result? The sins of the world have been paid for by Jesus! On a more personal note, the sins of my past have been taken away. The times I’ve dishonored or distrusted my God—those have been forgiven. Jesus, my Savior, has washed me clean.

What a way to start or end your day, knowing that Jesus loves you, has paid for all your sins, and isn’t ashamed to call you his brother or sister!

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Prayer:
Savior, Jesus, since you have loved me so dearly, help me never to be ashamed of you. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Never Alone – October 14, 2021

Thu, Oct 14, 2021 - 01:00am

The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.”
Genesis 2:18

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Daily Devotion – October 14, 2021

Devotion based on Genesis 2:18
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211014dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

According to Google, there are over eight million different species in the animal kingdom. Another article in an online animal journal identified ten of the most solitary creatures in the world. Out of all those eight million animal species, only ten prefer to be alone. The vast majority of animals prefer to be in packs, herds, and families. If that’s true for the animal kingdom, it is surely true for the vast majority of the seven billion human beings living on this planet.

While some alone time can be valuable, most of us thrive with the company of others. It’s not good for us to be alone. We function better when we have relationships with other people. We enjoy sharing experiences and creating memories with others. We benefit when friends or family members offer up listening ears, helping hands, and empathetic hearts. We feel a sense of purpose when we lend our ears, hands, and hearts to those around us.

Of course, all of us are different. We are unique individuals with unique personalities. Because of that, some of us might prefer just a few friends while others crave a much larger network. Yet, all of us thrive when we have some level of companionship.

Our Creator God knows what we need, and in his generosity, he supplies it. In marriage, God provides for that deep human need in a unique and special way. Husbands and wives transition from the households of their youth and join together into their own personal family units. For those who aren’t married, God still provides specials bonds with siblings and friends and deep, life-long relationships with parents and children. Because we live in a sinful world, there will be times when spouses, friends, and family members depart. Even then, our God does not abandon us. It is not good for us to be alone. So our Lord assures us, “You’re never alone! I am with you always.”

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Prayer:
Lord Jesus, my dearest Friend, thank you for the people you have put into my life. Help me to see my family members and my friends as precious gifts from you. Fill me with your love so that I may be a faithful friend to others, as you have been to me. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Complementary Companion – October 13, 2021

Wed, Oct 13, 2021 - 01:00am

The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
Genesis 2:18

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Daily Devotion – October 13, 2021

Devotion based on Genesis 2:18
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211013dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

After God created the world, he had Adam give names to all the creatures God had made. It would have been obvious to Adam that every creature had a companion—Mr. Lion had Mrs. Lion, Mr. Giraffe had Mrs. Giraffe, and so forth. It was God’s intention to supply Adam with a companion too. His creating activity wasn’t quite complete.

To a certain degree, Adam could have found some level of companionship within the animal kingdom. But God wanted to give him an even better gift, so he created Eve. Eve shared Adam’s humanity. Eve was a friend. Adam now had someone “suitable” for him. He had someone similar to him and equal to him, but uniquely different. He had someone to share in his joys and help carry his sorrows; someone to grow old with; someone to talk to. Not only did Eve provide Adam with companionship and vice-versa, but they also formed a compatible, harmonious team. Jesus said, “God created them male and female” (Mark 10:6). God very consciously and carefully created two distinct genders so they could team up together and complement each other.

Even in a world where some try to erase the differences between genders the Bible shows a loving Creator who knows how to give good gifts, special gifts, varied gifts. In a marriage, what one spouse lacks physically, emotionally, or psychologically the other can provide. Where one might be weak, the other can be strong. Husbands and wives are teammates and partners, but that doesn’t mean they will always have the same jobs, opinions, or ideas. Instead, they bring into the relationship different strengths, different abilities, and different backgrounds. They are better together than they are apart.

Husbands and wives, take a moment to consider how unique and even how different your spouse may be from you. Rejoice in those differences. Thank God for the complementary companion he has given you.

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Prayer:
Gracious Lord, ever since the beginning of the world you have showered your people with good gifts. Thank you for the many different and unique people you have put into my life. Help me to shower them with kindness and affection. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Relationship Instructions – October 12, 2021

Tue, Oct 12, 2021 - 01:00am

Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Ephesians 5:21

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Daily Devotion – October 12, 2021

Devotion based on Ephesians 5:21
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211012dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

According to one internet survey, the BILLY/OXBERG bookcase and the PAX wardrobe are the two pieces of IKEA furniture that are the most complicated to assemble. Customers complained that the directions were too complex. Numerous reviewers fussed about having leftover pieces and the assembly process taking five hours or more.

Some things you can take out of the box and build without even looking at the instructions. Not the BILLY/OXBERG bookcase or the PAX wardrobe. You want to follow the instructions.

The same is true when people enter into friendships. There are some basic instructions you want to follow for the friendship to be successful. Be kind to one another. Treat each other with respect. Be honest. Those are valuable instructions when it comes to all human interactions and relationships.

Honesty, kindness, and respect are particularly valuable in marriages. God doesn’t give spouses a 400-page document of dos and don’ts, but he does give a very basic directive: Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

The natural tendency for human beings is to look out for self, to serve self. In other words, ME FIRST! God reminds us that a different mindset is what makes marriages and relationships work. Not me first but my spouse first. When spouses submit to one another, they are saying, “I want your needs to be met before mine. I want your happiness and your goals to come before mine.” Submitting to one another looks less like a tug-of-war contest and more like a gift-giving contest (if such a thing existed).

And if we’re looking for a role model, we need look no further than Jesus. And, if we’re looking for a boost to help us do less taking and more giving, we need look no further than Jesus. The patience, love, and forgiveness he shares with us are all the motivation we need. The way he put our needs ahead of his own and the way he sacrificed his life to save ours is the boost we need to keep sharply focused on a Christ-like mindset—not me first, but others first.

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Prayer:
Lord Jesus, your deep love for me enables me to love others. Whether I am single or married, young or old, help me to think, to love, and to act more and more like you. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Learning to Love – October 11, 2021

Mon, Oct 11, 2021 - 01:00am

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
Ephesians 5:25

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Daily Devotion – October 11, 2021

Devotion based on Ephesians 5:25
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211011dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Years ago, a Christian woman in her mid-60s said to me, “Now that my husband is retired, he is home all the time, and it’s really putting a strain on our marriage.” I knew what she meant. She wasn’t saying she didn’t like being with her husband or that her marriage was falling apart. But instead, over the years, when they each had full-time jobs, they would see each other only in the evenings. A pattern had developed. They had learned how to be loving and patient with each other for the few hours they were together each evening. But now, that pattern had been disrupted. They had to intentionally work at being loving to one another—not just in the evenings, but in the mornings and afternoons as well.

With more and more people working from home, husbands and wives are spending much more time together than before. As a result, couples of all ages are coping with new patterns. And that can be challenging to relationships.

Here are a couple of things to consider: If it’s a little bit more difficult for us to be surrounded by family members more often than we were accustomed to, understand it’s probably just as difficult and straining for them too. Additionally, just because it might be a strain doesn’t mean it’s a negative thing. It means we have a new pattern that may need some adjustment. Spending extra time together means we will need to be extra intentional with our love and patience. We will want to work extra hard to take words and actions in the kindest possible way.

And if you want a little extra motivation, look to Jesus, who loved the church and gave himself up for her. When we see of how patient Jesus is with us, we are moved to be more patient with others. When we see how often and how freely Jesus forgives us; that helps us to forgive one another. When we see how Jesus makes sacrifices for us and serves us, that makes us want to serve too—not just in the evenings, but in the mornings and afternoons as well.

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Prayer:
Dear Jesus, help me to love and serve others as you have loved and served me. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Not Fair – October 10, 2021

Sun, Oct 10, 2021 - 01:00am

“Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?”
Matthew 20:15

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Daily Devotion – October 10, 2021

Devotion based on Matthew 20:15
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211010dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

“That’s not fair!” How often don’t we feel or say that something isn’t fair? God has blessed me with children. If one daughter didn’t receive what her sister got, you can guess what I heard: “Dad, that’s not fair!”

In the Bible, Jesus tells the story about a landowner who hired workers throughout the day to work in his fields. At day’s end, he gave them all the same pay, regardless of how long they worked. When those who worked the longest saw that their paycheck matched that of those who worked less time, they cried out, “That’s not fair!” The landowner reminded his unhappy workers that he had the right to do what he wanted with his money. They were not to be jealous of his generosity.

At one time, you and I were without purpose or hope because of sin’s curse. But God, the gracious landowner, called us to faith and service in his vineyard, his kingdom of grace. Perhaps you have served him for a long time now. One day you will receive your paycheck in full: the gift of eternal life in heaven. There will be many there who will receive the same paycheck of God’s grace, even if they didn’t serve as long and hard. Yet may we not cry out, “That’s not fair!” Rather, let’s rejoice in God’s generosity for us! And while there still is time, let’s get out into those fields and labor to bring the message of a generous heavenly Father to those who are without purpose or hope.

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Prayer:
Lord, in your generosity you have called me to serve you with my very life. Help me be faithful and truly thankful for your goodness. Through me bring your generosity in Jesus to others. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Perfect Rest – October 9, 2021

Sat, Oct 09, 2021 - 01:00am

[Jesus said] “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28

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Daily Devotion – October 9, 2021

Devotion based on Matthew 11:28
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211009dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Hurricanes, wars, droughts, broken families, illness…These and many other things in life cause us to be worried, afraid, uncertain, and perhaps leaving us feeling weary and burdened. No one escapes these problems or these feelings, no matter how hard they try. Most of our solutions to those problems are either unsuccessful or temporary.

Thankfully, Jesus provided a solution to the problem which causes all of our other problems. We had become disconnected from God because we had chosen to do things our way instead of his way. The Bible calls this sin, of which we are all guilty. But Jesus, God’s Son, came into this world to solve the problem of our sin. He did this by living life God’s way—perfectly, and by paying the price for our sins with his death on the cross. His rising from the dead on Easter morning shows us that we are God’s children. This promise also includes the promise that one day God will raise us to take us to be with him in heaven where there will be no sin and none of the other problems that cause us to be weary and burdened.

As long as we live in this world, problems will continue to exist, but Jesus has solved our worst problem. This gives us rest from our burdens and peace in the midst of a life full of weariness. It gives us the sure hope that one day, in heaven, all trouble will be gone. Jesus is our Savior who gives us rest today and will give us perfect rest in heaven.

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Prayer:
Jesus, thank you for providing us with a solution from all of life’s worries and burdens. Especially for the solution to the problem, which brought all this into the world, our sin. Jesus I am facing trials in my life, I bring them to you. Thank you for carrying them for me. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Be Salty – October 8, 2021

Fri, Oct 08, 2021 - 01:00am

[Jesus said] “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with each other.”
Mark 9:50

#top .hr.hr-invisible.av-1g4ignz-594f42938c8dfc7e7ac530646d401b16{ height:15px; } Be Salty
Daily Devotion – October 8, 2021

Devotion based on Mark 9:50
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211008dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Salt is an extremely useful substance. Today, we mainly use salt to season our food. But in the years before refrigeration, people also used salt to preserve food. Salt draws water out of food, preventing the growth of bacteria that can spoil food.

It’s hard to imagine salt losing its chemical properties. But if that were possible, it would make what normally is a very useful substance into a useless one. If salt no longer can season your food, and if it loses its ability to prevent food from spoiling, what good is it? You may as well just throw it away!

Jesus once said to his followers, “You are the salt of the earth” (Matthew 5:13). His message was that those who believe in him help preserve the world from “spoiling.” Our world is filled with sinners, all of whom by nature care only for themselves. Sinners on their own are willing to do all sorts of things, including things that harm others, if they think that in the end it will benefit them. Those who trust in Jesus provide a preservative against that. Because of their faith in Jesus, they are eager to serve God by serving those who are around them.

But what if believers, the salt of the earth, no longer live their faith? What if they start living just like everyone else instead of serving God by serving those who are around them? Then they’re not good for much, are they? They’re just like salt that has lost its saltiness.

That’s why Jesus encourages us, “Have salt among yourselves.” Jesus wants all who trust in him to be “salty” people. And when we trust in Jesus as our Savior, that is exactly what we are. We are the salt that God uses to preserve this world. The faith that God has worked in our hearts leads us to love Jesus, who sacrificed himself to pay for all our sins. And that love for Jesus overflows into our love for others, which leads us to serve them and be at peace with each other.

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Prayer:
Heavenly Father, keep me always close to you that I may be salt in this world. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Be Willing to Sacrifice – October 7, 2021

Thu, Oct 07, 2021 - 01:00am

[Jesus said] “If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.”
Mark 9:43

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Daily Devotion – October 7, 2021

Devotion based on Mark 9:43
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211007dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

What would you be willing to do in order to avoid sin?

Let’s say that your hand has a mind of its own. It keeps grabbing merchandise that you haven’t paid for and carries it out of the store. It regularly balls itself into a fist and punches people in the face for no reason whatsoever. It even expresses itself to others using obscene gestures. Would you be willing to chop off your hand if that meant your hand would no longer be able to lead you into sin?

What about if your eye kept looking at pornography on the internet? Would you be willing to gouge out your eye so that it would no longer be able to lead you into sin?

These are the kinds of situations that Jesus confronts us with in our Bible passage for today. And he tells us that even though it would definitely be hard to live without a hand or an eye, that is far better than spending eternity in hell.

Of course, Jesus isn’t advocating that we actually maim ourselves to avoid sin. He is, however, graphically portraying the lengths to which he wants us to be willing to go to avoid sin. Avoiding sin is not always going to be a painless endeavor. Sometimes, avoiding sin means that we must give up things that we enjoy. Sometimes, it requires us to do things that we might not otherwise want to do. Sometimes, avoiding sin can be painful. It requires sacrifice.

Jesus, however, assures us that the sacrifice is worth it. And he promises to give us the strength we need to make the sacrifices necessary to avoid sin. He already has sacrificed himself to remove from us the guilt of all our sins. He will not now abandon us as we strive to live our lives for him.

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Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you sacrificed yourself for me. Strengthen me that I may be willing to sacrifice everything to follow you. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Let God Promote You – October 6, 2021

Wed, Oct 06, 2021 - 01:00am

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
James 4:10

#top .hr.hr-invisible.av-1g4ignz-594f42938c8dfc7e7ac530646d401b16{ height:15px; } Let God Promote You
Daily Devotion – October 6, 2021

Devotion based on James 4:10
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211006dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

With the birth of social media came the birth of a new occupation, that of the social media influencer. Social media influencers are people who have thousands, even millions of followers on social media who use their wide audiences to promote products. Companies will pay these influencers large sums of money to mention their products in their social media posts. And these influencers put a lot of effort into promoting not only these products but also themselves. After all, you can’t become a social media influencer with millions of followers if you don’t work hard at promoting yourself in every way you can.

Self-promotion is essential if you want to be a social media influencer. It is the opposite of what you want to do, however, in your relationship with God. In fact, as the apostle James tells us today, the best way to be “promoted” in our relationship with God is to completely “demote” ourselves before him.

James tells us, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” Yes, if we want to be “promoted” before God, the first thing we need to do is humble ourselves. This means recognizing before God that on our own we have absolutely nothing to offer him. It means confessing before God our utter sinfulness from the moment of our conception. It means laying out before him the guilt we have accumulated for ourselves through all our sinful thoughts, words, and actions. It means throwing ourselves on his mercy, knowing that apart from his mercy we are doomed to be punished forever for our sins.

When we humble ourselves like that before God, he lifts us up. He assures us that for Jesus’ sake he has forgiven us all our sins. Through faith in Jesus, he adopts us into his family as his dearly loved sons and daughters. He makes us heirs of eternal life with him in heaven. He elevates us from the depths of sorrow to the heights of joy.

Self-promotion will never get you anywhere with God. Rather humble yourself and let God in his grace promote you.

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Prayer:
Heavenly Father, I praise you that in your grace you have lifted me up. Help me always to find my reason for rejoicing in you. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

God Welcomes All Who Come to Him – October 5, 2021

Tue, Oct 05, 2021 - 01:00am

Come near to God and he will come near to you.
James 4:8

#top .hr.hr-invisible.av-1g4ignz-594f42938c8dfc7e7ac530646d401b16{ height:15px; } God Welcomes All Who Come to Him
Daily Devotion – October 5, 2021

Devotion based on James 4:8
https://wels2.blob.core.windows.net/daily-devotions/20211005dev.mp3
See series: Devotions

Jesus once told a story about a young man who demanded his inheritance while his father was still alive. The young man then went to a distant land where he squandered all his money. Eventually, he had to take a job feeding pigs and was so hungry that he wished he could eat the food he was feeding to the pigs. Finally, the young man decided to go back home. He knew that he had deeply hurt his father. But he hoped that his father would receive him back, if not as a son, then as a servant.

When the young man came within sight of his hometown, his father, who had been waiting and watching for him, saw him. In his joy, the father ran to his son, embraced him, kissed him, and welcomed him home.

This story beautifully illustrates what the apostle James teaches us in today’s Bible passage. “Come near to God and he will come near to you.” All of us have been like the son in Jesus’ story. In our stubborn sinfulness, we have run away from God and done our own thing—all to our own detriment. Eventually, our rebellion against God landed us in a hole so deep that we could never get ourselves out of it. Then, God graciously led us to realize how foolish we were to run away from him. He worked in us sorrow over our sins and a desire to return to him. He drew us to himself and moved us to ask for his forgiveness.

Then just like the father in the story, before we could draw ourselves to God, God already was running to welcome us. Because of what Jesus did in sacrificing himself on the cross to pay for all our sins, God forgave us, embraced us, and received us as his dearly loved children, whom he never stopped looking out for. What a blessing to know we have a God who receives us and celebrates our return—almost as if we had never left.

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Prayer:
Heavenly Father, when I stray from you, draw me back to you and hold me close, so that I never stray from you again. Amen. #top .hr.hr-invisible.av-iz32kf-353a444a89ffaf3625ae74910530a89c{ height:25px; }

Daily Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.