Micah 6:9-16 – Guilt & Punishment

Read Micah 6:9-16

girl sitting in front of a window with her head down as if ashamed

What do you say about this divine announcement of guilt and punishment? Their indictment charged them with many crimes and offenses. We are still familiar with shady business practices, dishonesty, extortion, and violence, are we not? That’s why when we’re followers of Christ we want to be better than that. We don’t want to fall prey to the very same behaviors that angered God to wish such disaster on his children.

I’m guilty. I cheated on a test once. I’m sure I did. Looking at the addition sheet on my neighbor’s desk was just too easy. I wanted to make sure my answer matched theirs. I confess. But that’s just a simple example of how we all stumble, especially when we may not “know any better.”

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Hosea 1-3 💙 A Picture of Forgiveness

forgiveness written in the sand

Today’s reading is longer than most. The story is a powerful example to bring to life the theme of “Salvation, Forgiveness, and New Life.” I encourage you to read the following text with that lens. What is God’s message to you today in terms of this theme?

Read Hosea 1-3

I am impressed with Hosea’s faithfulness in the first place. We don’t hear how he had to set his own feelings aside as he watched his wife get pregnant time after time. But the story Hosea’s life tells is very significant for the people of Israel.

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Luke 15:11-32 💚 God’s Embrace

Read Luke 15:11-32

prodigal son

We’re on a quest together during the Discovering the Bible Challenge to read the Bible looking for clues and messages from God. Our first mission is to recognize God’s majesty and grace. In today’s passage I see this coming through God’s love and compassion.

I have always loved this story that Jesus told to help illustrate God’s love and desire to be in relationship with us. We don’t have to be perfect to be loved by God. He loves us all, even those who go “missing.”

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December 10 🌟 Prepare the Way (Mark 1:1-8)

Read Mark 1:1-8

silhouette of a man and a woman kneeling at the foot of a cross with a sunset in the background

I love how the Gospel of Mark starts right here, with John’s ministry preparing the way. When is the last time you asked yourself, “how am I showing up for Jesus?” When people look at you, do they see Jesus at all?

Since none of us really know what Jesus’ looks like physically, although he’s been depicted in all sorts of ways over the years, we know what he looks like in behavior and character. That’s what I’m talking about here. How much did John really know about his cousin Jesus before he started preaching?

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1 Kings 1:49-53 – Making Mistakes

Read 1 Kings 1:49-53

pencil eraser on yellow pencil

Adonijah did much more than make a mistake when he declared himself king. He opened the door to hatred and revenge from his brother, the true king, and severe disappointment from his father. Sometimes we avoid doing things for fear of what “other people might think.”

I’m the first to admit I’ve had that worry a time or two or two thousand during my life. I’m a people pleaser, and I want to fix things. Pretty much everything that crosses my path gets “fixed” if I have much to do with it. It’s a behavior I’ve worked on controlling for many years.

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