Day 148: Absolute Authority

The Daily Word: Thursday, May 28th, 2020
2 Samuel 13:1-39
John 17:1-26
Psalm 119:81-96
Proverbs 16:6-7
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should a give eternal life to as many as You have given Him.” – Jn. 17:1-2

God has given Jesus authority over “all flesh.” That means that, when you are hidden in Jesus, you no longer have to struggle with sin! You are no longer subject to the “lust of the flesh” (Gal 5:16). That also means that you no longer have to struggle with disease! You are no longer subject to the curse of sickness because, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us” (Gal. 3:13)!

Jesus has authority over “all flesh.” Over everything you could be going through. Over every obstacle you might be facing! And He sent me to remind you that He has already given you the victory over your current circumstance, in Jesus’ name!

Prayer:

Father, thank You for giving Jesus authority over all flesh! I invite Him to come and exercise that authority in my life: to cast out all sin, and to cast out all sickness, in Jesus’ name!

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

Day 147: Your Advantage

The Daily Word: Wednesday, May 27th, 2020
2 Samuel 12:1-31
John 16:1-33
Psalm 119:65-80
Proverbs 16:4-5
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. – Jn. 16:7

The disciples were with Jesus every day. They spent time looking at Him; talking with Him; traveling with Him. They saw every miracle He performed! He filled them with confidence as He told them to go and, “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons” (Matt. 10:8).

They were blessed because they were with Jesus! Yet Jesus said, “It is to your advantage that I go away.” He promised His disciples that they would actually be better off once Jesus left. Why? Because when Jesus left, He would send His Holy Spirit.

You are not powerless. You have an advantage! You don’t have to sit around and wish you had been alive when Jesus walked the earth so you could see God actually do something! You are not just next to Jesus; you are one with Jesus![1] You are not just with Him; He is in you! So you should expect to see more than what the disciples saw. You should expect to see signs, miracles and wonders everywhere you go! And you should expect to know Jesus better than you ever have before, when you lean on His Holy Spirit for help.

Prayer:
Father, thank You for giving me an advantage. I am so grateful for the indwelling presence of Your Holy Spirit: the Spirit of Jesus. Thank You for perfect intimacy with Jesus! And thank You for answered prayer, in Jesus’ name.

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

[1] “But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.” – 1 Cor. 6:17

Day 146: The True Vine

The Daily Word: Tuesday, May 26th, 2020
2 Samuel 9:1-11:27
John 15:1-27
Psalm 119:49-64
Proverbs 16:1-3
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.” – Jn. 15:1

There will be false vines in your life. There are things you can connect yourself to – hobbies, addictions, relationships – that won’t really give life! But Jesus is the true vine. He is the only One who can make your life what you dream it could be. He is the only One who can take away your pain and give you complete and perfect confidence that not only does God forgive you; He also loves you more than you could ever imagine!

Sever yourself from the false vines and connect yourself to the Source. Jesus is the true vine. He will replenish and replace anything that has been lost, and fill you up with life and love like never before!

Prayer:

Jesus, thank You for being the true vine! I will live my life connected to You. Help me to remove anything in my life that is distracting me from You! And help me to cling to You like never before, in Jesus’ name.

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

Day 145: There Is Always More

The Daily Word: Monday, May 25th, 2020
2 Samuel 7:1-8:18
John 14:15-31
Psalm 119:33-48
Proverbs 15:33
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Now it came to pass when the king was dwelling in his house, and the Lord had given him rest from all his enemies all around, that the king said to Nathan the prophet, “See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells inside tent curtains.” – 2 Sam. 7:1-2

David had everything he could ever want. He had become king over Israel, fulfilling the anointing that had been on his life since he was a teenager. He had victory over his enemies: so much so that he had, “…rest from all his enemies all around” (v 1)! David was content. But David still wanted to do more. He wanted to bless God by building a temple that would glorify His name!

No matter how blessed you already are, there is always more to do for Jesus. There are always more ways to bless Him! But here is the catch. We don’t do things for God because we have to. We aren’t working to try and earn His favor! We do things for God because we get to. We have the privilege of working to expand His Kingdom because we already have His favor!

David blessed God: not to find rest, but because God had already given him rest. God has blessed you so much. He has healed you! He has set you free! He has taken you from death into life! What will you do to bless Him back?

Prayer:

Father, You have blessed me so much. I want to bless you from a place of rest, just like David did. I want to give You more of my heart today than I ever have before! You are worthy of all the praise I can ever offer, in Jesus’ name.

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

Day 144: The Curse of Overconfidence

The Daily Word: Sunday, May 24th, 2020
2 Samuel 4:1-6:23
John 13:31-14:14
Psalm 119:17-32
Proverbs 15:31-32
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Peter said to Him, “Lord, why can I not follow You now? I will lay down my life for Your sake.” Jesus answered him, “Will you lay down your life for My sake? Most assuredly, I say to you, the rooster shall not crow till you have denied Me three times.” – Jn. 13:37-38

Peter wanted to believe he could follow Jesus, even to the death. So he boldly declared his strength out loud: “I will lay down my life for Your sake” (v. 39). Peter pledged to follow Jesus, no matter what!

But we all know what happened next. Jesus was arrested and put on trial. Peter had three separate opportunities to preach Jesus at the risk of losing his own life; but in all three cases, he denied Jesus. “I do not know the Man!” Peter swore (Matt. 26:72).

Peter was overconfident in his own abilities! And His overconfidence led to failure and denial of Jesus. It is better to underestimate our abilities and ask God for help, than to overestimate our abilities and assume we can do it on our own. How might Peter’s testimony have changed if he had repented and admitted his weakness to Jesus, instead of proudly declaring his strength?

Prayer:

Father, I admit that I am weak! I know that when I admit my weakness, You show Yourself strong in me. Help me to lean on you for strength and support all the time, in Jesus’ name!

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

Day 143: Be A Foot Washer

The Daily Word: Saturday, May 23rd, 2020
2 Samuel 2:12-3:39
John 13:1-30
Psalm 119:1-16
Proverbs 15:29-30
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. – Jn. 13:14

What does it mean to be a foot washer? At the Last Supper, Jesus had one final statement to make. He, “…took a towel and girded Himself” (v 4), and then He, “…began to wash the disciples’ feet” (v 5), one by one. Why did Jesus wash their feet? What did it mean?

First, washing feet is an act of humility. It shows that you have come to serve, not to be served.[1] Second, washing feet shows you are not afraid to get your hands dirty. Do you really want to make a difference in someone’s life? Walk with them through the dirty stuff. Don’t just help them when things are going well! Stay by their side when things are dirty and messy, and everyone else is running for the exits. Do you want to heal the sick? Find some sick people and get around them. Do you want to set the captives free? Well, the best place to start is prison!

The more you are willing to get your hands dirty, the more God can use you to clean. Jesus wasn’t afraid to get His hands dirty. Are you?

Prayer:

Father, I don’t want to run from messes anymore. I want to run right to them! If you need someone to go to a people group that really desperately needs help: send me. I am ready, and I am willing to be a foot washer, in Jesus’ name!

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

[1] “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” – Mk. 10:45

Day 142: A New Type of Love

The Daily Word: Friday, May 22nd, 2020
2 Samuel 1:1-2:11
John 12:20-50
Psalm 118:19-29
Proverbs 15:27-28
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan; you have been very pleasant to me; your love to me was wonderful, surpassing the love of women. – 2 Sam. 1:26

When Jonathan died, David was distraught. He was “distressed!” Jonathan gave David something no one had ever given him before: he was a true brother. David reflected that the brotherly love he shared with Jonathan was, “…wonderful, surpassing the love of women.” There is a type of love a brother (or a sister) can provide that a romantic relationship simply cannot supply.

And Jesus wants to provide that same type of love to you. His lovingkindess is better than life (Ps. 63:3)! David is a type of Jesus. As we read about the life of this man who achieved victory wherever he went, we are supposed to think of Jesus! And Jonathan represents you and me: the Church. Jonathan wasn’t concerned with  becoming king after his father Saul! He knew David was the rightful heir as the Lord’s anointed; so he supported and loved David as well as he could.

In the same way, our goal as the Church is not to grab power for ourselves. It is to glorify Jesus.  Jesus is the One who is seated on the throne! He has shown us a love that is far better than any romance we have ever known. Can we exalt Him and glorify Him, and be willing our lay our lives down for Him, just as Jonathan did for David?

But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. – Prov. 18:24b

Prayer:

Father, I pray that everything I do would exalt Jesus. Help me be to Jesus as Jonathan was to David: always loving, always supporting, and always honoring in every way. Jesus, thank You for showing me a Covenant love that nothing and no one in this world could ever provide! I will lay down my life in return, in Jesus’ name.

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

Day 141: Most Worthy

The Daily Word: Thursday, May 21st, 2020
1 Samuel 29:1-31:13
John 11:55-12:19
Psalm 118:1-18
Proverbs 15:24-26
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Then one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, who would betray Him, said, “Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” – Jn. 12:4-5

Mary made an incredible sacrifice. She, “…took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair” (v. 3). What an offering! She honored Jesus with her very best.

You would think that all the disciples would have been inspired by Mary’s sacrifice: that they would have been provoked to honor Him with the same level of devotion as she did! But not everyone was happy with Mary’s gift. Judas Iscariot criticized Mary. He suggested that the feet of Jesus wasn’t the best place to pour out her best!

There is no place more worthy of an offering than the feet of Jesus. Time spent honoring Him is time well spent! Hours spent in His presence are the very best investment you can ever make. Other people will always look and criticize: surely your days could have been more productive if you had spent more time working, and less time with Jesus! But all that matters at the end of the day is, what will Jesus think of your gift?

Jesus loved Mary’s sacrifice. And He will love yours. Whatever you have – your very best! – lay it at His feet; for He is most worthy of anything you could ever offer.

Prayer:

Jesus, I want to worship You with my life! I want to honor You by giving You my very best. Help me to take my best and lay it at Your feet, in Jesus’ name!

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

Day 140: Commanding Prayer

The Daily Word: Wednesday, May 20th, 2020
1 Samuel 26:1-28:25
John 11:1-54
Psalm 117:1-2
Proverbs 15:22-23
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” – Jn. 11:43

Jesus didn’t ask God for permission to raise Lazarus from the dead. He didn’t ask God to do it for Him! In fact, He didn’t even ask God for anything at all; He commanded, and Lazarus came forth.

Jesus commanded in prayer. He was so in touch with the Father’s will[1] that He knew exactly what God wanted to do in any given moment. And from that place of confident faith, when Jesus commanded, creation responded. Dead things came to life. Broken bodies were healed, and broken faith was restored!

It’s time to get aggressive in prayer. It’s time to infuse your prayers with boldness! God has given you power and authority to pray in the name of Jesus. He has filled you with the same Holy Spirit who empowered Jesus for His earthly ministry;[2] so it only follows that you should go out and pray the same prayers Jesus prayed, and expect exactly the same results!

You don’t have to ask permission to pray for something God already said belongs to you. Command it to take shape, in Jesus’ name!

Prayer:

Father, make me bold in my prayers! I want to know Your will so that I can boldly proclaim Your word and Your will everywhere I go. Remind me that I have the authority to command powerful outcomes and watch them come to life, in Jesus’ name!

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

[1] “Then Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner.’” – Jn. 5:19

[2] “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” – Rom. 8:11

Day 139: Right Word / Wrong Time

The Daily Word: Tuesday, May 19th, 2020
1 Samuel 24:1-25:44
John 10:22-42
Psalm 116:1-19
Proverbs 15:20-21
For full text click here.

Commentary from Pastor Michael White:
Then the men of David said to him, “This is the day of which the Lord said to you, ‘Behold, I will deliver your enemy into your hand, that you may do to him as it seems good to you.’ ” And David arose and secretly cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. – 1 Sam. 24:4

David and his men were hiding in a cave from Saul when – guess what! – Saul walked right in, “…to attend to his needs” (v 3). That’s right: Saul took a bathroom break in the same cave where David just happened to be hiding, and David had the perfect opportunity to kill Saul! All David’s soldiers told David to kill Saul! They referenced what was clearly a specific prophetic word David had received that God would “…deliver your enemy into your hand…” (v 4). But David didn’t do it. He let Saul go alive! Why? Why didn’t he take the opportunity in front of him to make himself king over Israel?

The prophetic word may have been accurate! But the timing was all wrong. You should never have to take matters into your own hands for God’s word to come to pass. It should feel like He is leading you into your destiny, instead of you having to force His promise into existence! If you try to make it happen, that means you aren’t allowing God to make it happen for you!

Yes, you have a role to play in the unfolding of your destiny. Your role is to watch, listen, and wait. Don’t force it. Refuse to take matters into your own hands! God will cause it to happen in due time.

Prayer:

Father, help me never to try and force Your hand. I never want to try and take what You have for me before You’re ready to give it to me! Thank You for a graceful, peaceful process of destiny unfolding over my life, in Jesus’ name.

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

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