October 24

Jeremiah 44:24-47:7; 2 Timothy 2:22-3:17; Psalm 94:1-23; Proverbs 26:6-8

God allows us the freedom to make decisions for our lives even if those decisions are against His will for us. This confuses people because as powerful as God is, He has preserved humanity’s ability to choose its own way. Why would God do this?

The only way real love can be offered is freely. It is unquestionable that God loves us unconditionally. God wants that’s same love reciprocated to Him. Real, committed love cannot be coerced. It is a choice from the heart.

Israel was exiled in a foreign land. It was their persistent disobedience that landed them there. Instead of having a repentant heart, they doubled down on the disobedience and started to worship a pagan god, “The Queen of Heaven.” Even though God knew it was futile, He allowed it. Israel had a heart-choice to make and they choose another god. God gave us free will so that we would have the ability to choose Him from our heart.

That’s all God wants from us. He wants us to choose Him! There are choices all around us. There are options around us but the best one is God. But if we choose to ignore God and live our lives by another standard, as much as it breaks God’s heart, He will allow it. What brings joy to God is when we say to Him, “I choose You over all other options. You are my God.”

Tomorrow’s Reading:  Jeremiah 48:1-49:22; 2 Timothy 4:1-22; Psalm 95:1-96:13; Proverbs 26:9-12

October 23

Jeremiah 42:1-44:23; 2 Timothy 2:1-21; Psalm 92:1-93:5; Proverbs 26:3-5

One word from God can change our lives! The renegades who invaded Jerusalem came to Jeremiah to inquire about the Lord’s will for them. They submitted themselves to God’s servant and committed that whatever Jeremiah brought back from God, they would follow.

God clearly told them to stay in Jerusalem and He would bless them. They rejected the Word that the prophet Jeremiah spoke to them and did the exact opposite. God not only told them what would happen if they obeyed but God also told them what would happen if they didn’t obey. The chose the route of disobedience and everything that God told them would happen, did happen.

We do well to remember that every act of disobedience carries with it consequences. God has given us shepherds to speak His Word to us. Train yourself to hear God speak to you through your Pastor’s voice. It is the voice that can speak life into dying situations. It can give hope to desperate situations and it can bring peace to turbulent situations. God’s Word will never fail so trust what God says to you for it will surely happen!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 44:24-47:7; 2 Timothy 2:22-3:17; Psalm 94:1-23; Proverbs 26:6-8

October 22

Jeremiah 39:1-41:18; 2 Timothy 1:1-18; Psalm 90:1-91:16; Proverbs 26:1-2

When the favor of God is evident in your life, you get a supernatural advantage over others. Jeremiah had God’s favor working in his life. It was not easy for him to recognize because he was focused like a laser on obeying God.

Yet, God’s favor was all around him. When Israel finally fell to its enemies the King of Babylon told the soldiers to locate Jeremiah and give him a private audience. When Jeremiah approached the king, he had no idea what the King wanted. The king actually gave him an option: you can stay and be taken care of or go to Babylon and be taken care of by the King.

He was the only one who was given such an option. This is another example of that supernatural advantage that favor gives to the child of God. You should live in expectation for this same favor to show up in your life. Expect to be surprised by God’s favor.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 42:1-44:23; 2 Timothy 2:1-21; Psalm 92:1-93:5; Proverbs 26:3-5

October 21

Jeremiah 37:1-38:28; 1 Timothy 6:1-21; Psalm 89:38-52; Proverbs 25:28

The times around us may be dangerous and there may even be all out hostility against you. Regardless of the signs of the times, God can take care of those who belong to Him.

Jeremiah refused to compromise his values and he would speak truthfully for God even in the face of death threats. What would give Jeremiah this type of confidence since the Kings of Israel and the foreign kings were known to be brutal? He trusted God’s ability to protect him!

Even when Jeremiah’s enemies tried several times to harm Him, God always showed up to protect him. This is a function of God’s favor. Jeremiah was imprisoned, put at the bottom of a well to die and he was secretly ambushed. Yet, God always got him out.

God didn’t just do this for Jeremiah! He will do it for you!! Trust God’s protection because God’s “favor surrounds you like a shield.” (Psalm 12:5)

Tomorrow’s Reading:  Jeremiah 39:1-41:18; 2 Timothy 1:1-18; Psalm 90:1-91:16; Proverbs 26:1-2

October 20

Jeremiah 35:1-36:32; 1 Timothy 5:1-25; Psalm 89:14-37; Proverbs 25:25-27

How strongly do you hold onto your convictions? Are they momentary or are they lifelong? The Recabites give us a great example of holding onto your convictions for a lifetime.

Jeremiah invited them to the Temple and offered them wine but they refused to drink because of a commandment given generations before. Even though they were asked by the Lord’s prophet, in the Lord’s House, they would not break their convictions. God commends them for their commitment to their convictions while he chastises Israel for their persistent disobedience to His commands.

In a culture where people who hold convictions are criticized, we who hold onto the grace and mercy of God must never weaken our resolve. God expects us to hold on to our convictions and beliefs even in the face of fierce opposition. As a result, God says that the Recabites will always have descendants that follow Him. You will too!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 37:1-38:28; 1 Timothy 6:1-21; Psalm 89:38-52; Proverbs 25:28

October 19

Jeremiah 33:1-34:22; 1 Timothy 4:1-16; Psalm 89:1-13; Proverbs 25:23-24

Don’t ever underestimate the importance of joy in your life. It is an essential trait that the Believer needs. Joy is not related to our feelings. Joy is rooted in our convictions about God and His love for us.

Israel had received harsh punishment for they repeated disobedience. God’s word of encouragement to them is that they would be returned to their land and it would once again be fruitful. He tells them that joy will return in the streets.

Joy is a choice that you make everyday regardless of the circumstances. Joy is precious and you cannot let anyone steal it from you. Let your joy exude each day because it will encourage and inspire others.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 35:1-36:32; 1 Timothy 5:1-25; Psalm 89:14-37; Proverbs 25:25-27

October 18

Jeremiah 31:27-32:44; 1 Timothy 3:1-16; Psalm 88:1-18; Proverbs 25:20-22

Personal accountability is a part of God’s plan. When people try to skirt accountability, they are trying to short-cut the growth process. There can be no growth without accountability. Love gives us a safe environment were we can pursue growth.

But, love alone does not cause us to grow. We need truth. Truth is the accountability factor that we cannot live without. No one is above truth. There was a time in the Old Testament when the sins of the parents would accrue to the children. So regardless of how the children lived their lives, they were propelled forward or held back by their parents actions.

God said this will no longer happen. To quote an old saying, “Every tub has to stand on its own bottom.” In other words, we are responsible for our own actions. Receive God’s love but also receive His truth. Love and truth will sustain us.

Tomorrow’s Reading:  Jeremiah 33:1-34:22; 1 Timothy 4:1-16; Psalm 89:1-13; Proverbs 25:23-24

October 17

Jeremiah 30:1-31:26; 1 Timothy 2:1-15; Psalm 87:1-7; Proverbs 25:18-19

In all of our lives, we need to push a reset button. Israel needed one (in fact, they needed several). Just like with a computer, when the reset button is pushed, it clears away the memory and creates a fresh start.

God majors in giving us a clean slate so that we can start over. No matter how far we fall or how bad things get in our lives, God can turn things around and reestablish us.

Often the reset button requires a miracle to accomplish. Israel lost all its wealth, its land, its posterity and they were slaves in a foreign land. God promised that the reset button would be pushed and they would be back home, as prosperous as ever and all the things they lost would be restored. If God can do it for a whole nation, surely He can do it for you and your family!

Praise God today for a reset button being pushed in your life.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 31:27-32:44; 1 Timothy 3:1-16; Psalm 88:1-18; Proverbs 25:20-22

October 16

Jeremiah 28:1-29:32; 1 Timothy 1:1-20; Psalm 86:1-17; Proverbs 25:17

Everything that God does, He does systematically and intentionally. Even though Israel was enduring the pain of exile and punishment, God’s plans for them had not stopped.

Often we think that because we have missed the mark or made bad decisions that God has changed His plans for our lives. This couldn’t be further from the truth! God’s plans do not change for our lives because His plans for us are a part of His perfect will!

God told Israel that He had plans for her. God has plans for us too! You and I can never realize these plans until we stop looking back and start looking forward. God has done all the work and all He wants us to do is follow the plan. Like a builder who follows the architect’s plans so too God wants us to follow His plans so that we will build a lasting structure that brings glory to Him!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 30:1-31:26; 1 Timothy 2:1-15; Psalm 87:1-7; Proverbs 25:18-19

October 15

Jeremiah 26:1-27:22; 2 Thessalonians 3:1-18; Psalm 85:1-13; Proverbs 25:16

To speak for God in a world that hates Him is a daunting task. Jeremiah was called from his birth to speak for God. The more that culture turns from God, the more unpopular speaking God’s Word is.

Jeremiah was under a death threat because he spoke God’s judgment on Jerusalem. These Old Testament prophets had to bring unpopular messages but when people rejected the message, it did not mean the message was untrue.

When God speaks, even through His servants, it is truth. Never get to the point that you ignore God’s Word and go your own way. It will only end in destruction. Israel learned this time and time again.

Tomorrow’s Reading: Jeremiah 28:1-29:32; 1 Timothy 1:1-20; Psalm 86:1-17; Proverbs 25:17