Day 161: Holy Ground

The Daily Word: Wednesday, June 10th, 2020
1 Kings 7:1-51
Acts 7:30-50
Psalm 128:1-6
Proverbs 16:31-33
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
“Then the Lord said to him, ‘Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.’” – Acts 7:33

In Acts 7, Stephen recounts the story of Moses and the burning bush. Moses, “…turned aside to look to look” (Ex. 3:4) at the burning bush. As soon as he stopped what he was doing and made a point to behold the glory of God, the place where he was standing became “holy ground.”

You don’t have to go somewhere special to encounter God. He is already moving in your midst! He is already willing to put His glory on display in your life. What will determine whether or not you have an encounter with Him is not where you go. It is the answer to this question: Will you take the time to stop and behold His glory?

You have a hard task ahead of you. There are so many things vying for your attention. But if you will simply take a moment today to stop and behold God’s glory, you will encounter Him like never before, in Jesus’ name!

Prayer:

Father, thank You for showing me Your glory. I pray I would never be too busy to stop and look. I pray I would never be too distracted to behold Your glory! You are amazing; and I thank You for making Your presence known in my life, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 160: Too Much Strife!

The Daily Word: Tuesday, June 9th, 2020
1 Kings 5:1-6:38
Acts 7:1-29
Psalm 127:1-5
Proverbs 16:28-30
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
A perverse man sows strife, and a whisperer separates the best of friends. – Prov. 16:28

Do you like to sow strife? Do you enjoy creating conflict? Maybe you get a little too much joy out of publishing that Facebook post that you know will rub people the wrong way? Is your specialty division: inviting people to argue and fight instead of aligning in unity?

If that’s you, Scripture says you are “perverse.” Oxford dictionary defines “perverse” as, “showing a deliberate and obstinate desire to behave in a way that is unreasonable or unacceptable, often in spite of the consequences.” Let’s be honest. You like to stand out because of the disagreement your words cause. You enjoy the conflict because it creates some excitement in your life! But, unfortunately, there will be consequences. You will have trouble forming lasting relationships. You will have no one to turn to when you really need help and prayer!

Instead of strife, create peace. Because when you sow peace instead of strife, you will be blessed with, “…the fruit of righteousness” (Jas. 3:18). Wouldn’t you rather be known for your fruitfulness than your thoughtlessness?

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. – Matt. 5:9

Prayer:

Father, I don’t want to be perverse! Help me to avoid sowing strife. Instead of strife, I want to sow peace. I want to be known for the way I bring people together, not for the way my words and actions divide! Make me one who unites instead of separating, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 159: Except

The Daily Word: Monday, June 8th, 2020
1 Kings 3:3-4:34
Acts 6:1-15
Psalm 126:1-6
Proverbs 16:26-27
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
And Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of his father David, except that he sacrificed and burned incense at the high places. – 1 Kings 3:3

Solomon loved the Lord. Except. Solomon was the wisest king to ever live! Except. There was an “except” that prevented Solomon from loving and following God with his whole heart. And by the end of his life, the result was disastrous:

For it was so, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned his heart after other gods; and his heart was not loyal to the Lord his God, as was the heart of his father David. – 1 Kings 11:4

What is your “except?” What is the excuse that keeps you from loving Jesus with all your heart and all your soul? What is that little thing that prevents you from adoring God’s presence? Nip your “except” in the bud now before it’s too late. Allow God to show it to you! And allow Him to remove it from you, so you can be free to worship Jesus with all that you are.

Prayer:

Father, I don’t want an except anymore! I want to worship You with my whole heart, in Jesus’ name. I pray You would remove anything and everything that is keeping me from loving You wholly and fully, in Jesus’ name!

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 158: The Choice

The Daily Word: Sunday, June 7th, 2020
1 Kings 2:1-3:2
Acts 5:1-42
Psalm 125:1-5
Proverbs 16:25
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
So the Lord will return his blood on his head, because he struck down two men more righteous and better than he, and killed them with the sword–Abner the son of Ner, the commander of the army of Israel, and Amasa the son of Jether, the commander of the army of Judah–though my father David did not know it. – 1 Kings 2:32

You reap what you sow. Joab was a man of violence. He, “…shed the blood of war in peacetime” (v 5). He killed Abner and Amasa, the commanders of the armies of Israel and Judah, without King David knowing it! And the blood that was on Joab’s hands would return, “…on his head.”

You reap what you sow! If you pursue violence, violence will pursue you. If you lash out at others, others will lash out at you! Yet if you would make a decision to love others unconditionally, no matter what, God will make sure to surround you with people who love you.

The choice is yours. What kind of life will you live? Will you surround yourself with violence? Or will you surround yourself with favor and peace?

For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. – Matt. 7:2

Prayer:

Father, make me a (wo)man of peace. I know I reap what I sow! So I want to sow seeds of confident faith, and never of doubt. I want to sow seeds of peace, and never of violence, in Jesus’ name!

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 157: He Exalted Himself

The Daily Word: Saturday, June 6th, 2020
1 Kings 1:1-53
Acts 4:1-37
Psalm 124:1-8
Proverbs 16:24
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Then Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, “I will be king”; and he prepared for himself chariots and horsemen, and fifty men to run before him. – 1 Kings 1:5

King David was getting old. It was time to anoint a new king over Israel! But David took his time making the decision. So Adonijah took it upon himsed to try and force David’s hand. Adonijah, “…exalted himself, saying, ‘I Will be king!’”

Whenever you “exalt yourself,” prepare to be humbled. By the end of the day, Adonijah feared for his life. While Adonijah was eating and drinking with the people who supported him, David made Solomon king instead! Adonijah, “…went and took hold of the horns of the altar” (v. 50): he hid in the temple because he thought Solomon and the leaders of Israel would want to kill him for his rebellion!

Eventually, Adonijah was executed for his pride.[1] Exalting yourself never ends well! Instead, humble yourself that you may be exalted. As you get low and bow at the feet of Jesus, He will lift your head.

Prayer:

Father, make me humble! I pray I would never seek to exalt myself. I want to stay humble and reliant on You. If You want to exalt me, please do! But I refuse to waste even one ounce of effort exalting myself, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

[1] “So King Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he struck him down, and he died.” – 1 Kings 2:25

Day 156: Make Contact

The Daily Word: Friday, June 5th, 2020
2 Samuel 23:24-24:25
Acts 3:1-26
Psalm 123:1-4
Proverbs 16:21-23
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. – Acts 3:7

As Peter and John approached the temple for prayer, they encountered a man asking for money. They knew Jesus wanted to heal him; so they boldly declared, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk” (v 6)! And then Peter, “…took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength” (v 7).

Healing happens when you make contact with someone who’s hurting. Before this man was healed, Peter had to give him a hand. He had to lift him up! He had to give the man the support and assistance he needed to rise up out of his current situation and stand on his own feet.

There are people all around you who need your help. They need you to take them by the hand and lift them up. There are people who have less money than you who need financial support. People who have less faith than you who need prayer support! There are people who have less education than you who need directional support. Are you willing to take them by the hand so they can be healed?

Prayer:

God, You have blessed me with so much! And now it’s time to take what You have given me and use it to bless others. Put me in contact with people who need help, and I will show them the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

Archives
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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 155: All Things in Common

The Daily Word: Thursday, June 4th, 2020
2 Samuel 22:1-23:23
Acts 2:1-47
Psalm 122:1-9
Proverbs 16:19-20
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need. – Acts 2:44-45

The early Church grew: “…and the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:47). The early Church saw miracles: “Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles” (Acts 2:43).

I often hear discussion and prayer about how we can move in power the same way the early Church did! But do you know how they paved the way for the growth and power they experienced? By practicing radical generosity: “…all who believed…had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need” (vv 44-45).

What do you have that someone else needs? Maybe it’s money. Perhaps it’s expertise. It could be connections from a social or professional network! Ask God what He would have you give, so that those in lack can have what they need. The Church will not move in power as she should until we freely share our resources with those who need them most.

Prayer:

Father, tell me what I have that You want me to give. Help me to live with open hands instead of a closed fist. Whatever I have belongs to You! And when You tell me to do something with it, I will listen, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 154: He Was Raised

The Daily Word: Wednesday, June 3rd, 2020
2 Samuel 20:14-21:22
Acts 1:1-26
Psalm 121:1-8
Proverbs 16:18
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
…to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God. – Acts 1:3

The Resurrection of Jesus Christ is not a fantasy. It is not a legend! It is an actual historical event confirmed by, “…many infallible proofs.” In other words, a lot of people saw Jesus alive again, after He had been killed on the Cross!

First, Jesus showed Himself to Mary (Jn. 20: 16). Then He showed Himself to the disciples (Jn. 20:19). But Thomas still didn’t’ believe, so Jesus showed Himself to Thomas and the disciples again (Jn. 20:26)! Then in John 21, Jesus showed Himself to seven of His disciples yet again. The Apostle Paul, who was once a skeptic, recorded that, “…Jesus was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present” (1 Cor. 15:6). While Paul was writing, most of the eye-witnesses to the Resurrection were still alive and could confirm that they had seen Jesus with their own eyes!

The Resurrection happened. The only question that remains is: what are you going to do with that information? There was a Man named Jesus Christ who walked the Earth and claimed to be the Son of God. He promised His disciples He would be raised from the dead, and He was! And He promised them that they would be raised from the dead too. Instead of death, they would receive eternal life! So knowing all that, are you ready to make a decision to believe in Jesus Christ?

Prayer:

Father, thank You for taking out the guesswork. Thank You for answering my questions before I even know how to ask them! Jesus came, and He died for my sins. He was raised from the dead so that I can be raised too! I confess my sins, and I give my heart to Jesus, now and forevermore!

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 153: Jesus Showed Himself

The Daily Word: Tuesday, June 2nd, 2020
2 Samuel 19:11-20:13
John 21:1-25
Psalm 120:1-7
Proverbs 16:16-17
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and in this way He showed Himself… – Jn. 21:1

After the Resurrection, Jesus “showed Himself” again and again! First He showed Himself to Mary (Jn. 20: 16). Then He showed Himself to the disciples (Jn. 20:19). But Thomas still didn’t’ believe, so Jesus showed Himself to Thomas (Jn. 20:26)! And as John 21 begins, Jesus shows Himself to His disciples yet again. He needed them to know He was alive! He needed them to know He was with them!

Jesus will “show Himself” as often as you need Him to. He will show up in your life and make His presence known! But everyone who saw the Resurrected Christ had one thing in common: they wanted to see Him. They missed His presence when He was gone!

Do you long for Jesus? Do you want Him to show up in your life? Do you need Him to give you courage and strength? It doesn’t matter how long it’s been since you sought Him last; when you seek Him, He will always “show Himself again.”

Prayer:

Jesus, thank You for always being willing to show Yourself! I am so grateful for Your presence in my life. Thank You for showing up and showing off, and always being willing to show Yourself again!

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

Day 152: While It’s Still Dark

The Daily Word: Monday, June 1st, 2020
2 Samuel 18:1-19:10
John 20:1-31
Psalm 119:153-176
Proverbs 16:14-15
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene went to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. – Jn. 20:1

Mary went to the tomb, “…early, while it was still dark.” She expected to find a tomb sealed shut! But instead she found a tomb wide open. Jesus had been raised from the dead! The Resurrection about which He had spoken was real!

God loves to move “while it [is] still dark.” For Mary, it was the end of a long night! But for God, it was the start of a bright new morning. Are you looking for some light in the midst of dark times? It might seem like the middle of the night to you! But God is getting ready to start a brand new day out of your darkness.

Prayer:

Father, thank You for moving while it is still dark! I’m so grateful that no matter how dark it may seem, You are always good. You are always moving! And morning is always coming. You are amazing, and I can’t wait to see what You do next, in Jesus’ name.

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© Michael D. White, 2020. All rights reserved.

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