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Daily Devotionals

Start and end your day with an inspiring word of encouragement based on God's timeless Word. The Daily Devotional is designed to boost your faith and help you maintain a positive mindset every day of the week. Have a bless day! Deacon Mitcham

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Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 31, 2011 at 7:11am
“Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from Jerusalem. And they talked together of all these things which had happened.” Luke 24:13–14

I find, as a Christian, that I need to be reminded of things that I sometimes forget. Have you noticed that you don’t always know as much as you think you know? I have found that I often forget what I ought to remember, and I remember what I ought to forget.

In Luke 24, we find the story of two men who had forgotten some things they should have remembered. At one time, they had been passionate followers of Christ, but now their dreams had been destroyed as they watched Him die on a Roman cross.

Even as He hung there, they were hoping for a last-minute miracle. But no miracle came. They felt discouraged and let down. So they decided to leave town.

Jesus said that He would be crucified, and after three days, would rise again. He spoke of it often. But they had forgotten. Now they wanted to put as much distance between them and the cross as possible.

We need to remember that every step away from the cross is a step in the wrong direction. When we are hurting or have failed spiritually, that is not the time to run away from the cross. That is the time to run to it.

Maybe something has happened in your life and you feel as though God has let you down. Maybe some tragedy has occurred. But God has not failed you. He has not forgotten you. Now is the time to run back to the cross. Now is the time to remember His Word and the promises it holds for you.
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 29, 2011 at 12:26pm
This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. --Psalm 118:24

One of the keys to making every day count as a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ is found in the words He spoke in Matthew 6:34: “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

lot of people can’t do this because they’re too focused on yesterday… tomorrow… or themselves!

Some people just think about yesterday… the past. Just like you’re going to have an accident if you drive your car looking in the rearview mirror, you’re going to have an accident in life when all you do is live life looking over your shoulder!

Yet other people can’t live for the Lord today because they’re too busy focusing on themselves… and in the meantime they’re sort of just getting by in life.

Still other people only focus on the future. They worry about everything that’s going to happen next. They are so busy planning tomorrow or the next big thing that they never live today!

But today… I want to challenge you to be the kind of person who lives today for today. I challenge you to commit today’s verse to memory: “This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

Someone once said, “Today is the most important day of my life. Yesterday with its successes and victories, struggles and failures, is gone forever. The past is past. Done! Finished! I cannot relive it. I cannot go back and change it. But I will learn from it and improve my today. Today, this moment, now! It is God’s gift to me and it is all that I have.”
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 28, 2011 at 6:46pm
Thought you might enjoy this story.


A successful business man was growing old and knew it was time to choose a successor to take over the business.

Instead of choosing one of his Directors or his children, he decided to do something different. He called all the young executives in his company together.

He said, "It is time for me to step down and choose the next CEO. I have decided to choose one of you." The young executives were Shocked, but the boss continued. "I am going to give each one of you a SEED today - one very special SEED. I want you to plant the seed, water it, and come back here one year from today with what you have grown from the seed I have given you. I will then judge the plants that you bring, and the one I choose will be the next CEO."

One man, named Jim, was there that day and he, like the others, received a seed.He went home and excitedly, told his wife the story. She helped him get a pot, soil and compost and he planted the seed. Everyday, he would water it and watch to see if it had grown. After about three weeks, some of the other executives began to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow.

Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew.

Three weeks, four weeks, five weeks went by, still nothing.

By now, others were talking about their plants, but Jim didn't have a plant and he felt like a failure.

Six months went by -- still nothing in Jim's pot. He just knew he had killed his seed. Everyone else had trees and tall plants, but he had nothing. Jim didn't say anything to his colleagues, however, he just kept watering and fertilizing the soil - He so wanted the seed to grow.

A year finally went by and all the young executives of the company brought their plants to the CEO for inspection.

Jim told his wife that he wasn't going to take an empty pot. But she asked him to be honest about what happened. Jim felt sick to his stomach, it was going to be the most embarrassing moment of his life, but he knew his wife was right. He took his empty pot to the board room. When Jim arrived, he was amazed at the variety of plants grown by the other executives. They were beautiful -- in all shapes and sizes. Jim put his empty pot on the floor and many of his colleagues laughed, a few felt sorry for him!

When the CEO arrived, he surveyed the room and greeted his young executives.

Jim just tried to hide in the back. "My, what great plants, trees and flowers you have grown," said the CEO. "Today one of you will be appointed the next CEO!"

All of a sudden, the CEO spotted Jim at the back of the room with his empty pot. He ordered the Financial Director to bring him to the front. Jim was terrified. He thought, "The CEO knows I'm a failure! Maybe he will have me fired!"

When Jim got to the front, the CEO asked him what had happened to his seed - Jim told him the story.

The CEO asked everyone to sit down except Jim. He looked at Jim, and then announced to the young executives, "Behold your next Chief Executive Officer!

His name is Jim!" Jim couldn't believe it. Jim couldn't even grow his seed.

"How could he be the new CEO?" the others said.

Then the CEO said, "One year ago today, I gave everyone in this room a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it, and bring it back to me today. But I gave you all boiled seeds; they were dead - it was not possible for them to grow.

All of you, except Jim, have brought me trees and plants and flowers. When you found that the seed would not grow, you substituted another seed for the one I gave you. Jim was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it. Therefore, he is the one who will be the new Chief Executive Officer!"

* If you plant honesty, you will reap trust

* If you plant goodness, you will reap friends

* If you plant humility, you will reap greatness

* If you plant perseverance, you will reap contentment

* If you plant consideration, you will reap perspective

* If you plant hard work, you will reap success

* If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation

So, be careful what you plant now; it will determine what you will reap later.

*****
Your aspiration is your motivation,
your motivation is your belief,
your belief is your peace,
your peace is your target,
your target is heaven, and life is like hard core torture without it!
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 28, 2011 at 7:37am
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. Romans 1:16

William Bennett, former US Secretary of Education, in his book The Devaluing of America, made this statement. “During my tenure as U. S. Secretary of Education, nothing I said seemed more unforgivable than my good words about religion. I was attacked as an Ayatollah when I supported voluntary school prayer and the posting of the Ten Commandments in school.”

His experience is so typical of our culture today. You can say anything. You can believe anything. But if you stand up and say there are absolutes, if you say there is right and wrong and the Bible says so, then you are accused of hurting our society. You are the worst possible thing that could happen to our culture.

Ironically, the very problems that are the result of society’s rejection of God are then placed at the feet of the Christian, as though the Christian has brought these troubles on our culture.

But this is not the first time in history that Christians have become scapegoats for the ills of a culture. Christians were blamed for the burning of Rome when it was Caesar Nero who was largely responsible for its destruction.

We live in a time when people are standing up for all sorts of causes. We have people standing up for the rights of animals. We have people standing up for the environment. We have people standing up for perverse sexual lifestyles. We have people standing up for everything imaginable, even willing to die for their cause.

Isn't it time that we, as Christians, stand up for what we believe?

It’s time to stand up and be counted…..Now
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 27, 2011 at 7:40am
Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.” 1st Samuel 17:45

David and Goliath, the Philistine. It's not the size of the dog in the fight; it's the size of the fight in the dog. David didn't have the rank, equipment or training, but he had the winning attitude.

So great was his level of expectation that, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hastened and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. 1st Samuel 17:48.

While Saul and his soldiers were hiding, David was running to meet the challenge. How's that for great expectations? Now we're not talking about faith in our own ability, but in 'Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us' Ephesians 3:20.

Know what? The God who lives within you is limited by one thing only: your inability or unwillingness to trust Him. The more you trust God, the more you'll be able to accomplish for Him.

And if you keep believing and expecting, you'll someday find yourself doing what you once considered impossible. Why? 'Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the LORD!' Psalm 27:14

It's said that if Michelangelo had consulted his doubts or his critics, he'd have painted the floor of the Sistine Chapel instead of the ceiling, and his work wouldn't be around for us to admire. The truth is, great results begin with great expectations of God!

How about you? How about me?
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 26, 2011 at 7:49am
Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; 1st Peter 5:2-3

Our ability to speak with authority stems from the same source as was true of Jesus Himself. The authority Jesus possessed was not based on any earthly position, but in the quality, conduct and character of His life.

The true shepherd exercises spiritual leadership with the heart of a servant. As servants, we are subject to the needs of those we are called to lead. That's why Jesus said we will know His disciples by their love.

The requirements to be a spiritual leader in 1st Timothy 3 and Titus 1 are all character requirements. All of this is made possible by the indwelling presence of God, the Holy Spirit. Peter writes, “Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock;”

You never hear Jesus say, "You do this because I'm God." What happens to a marriage relationship when a husband authoritatively demands obedience because he is the head of the home? Nothing good, let me assure you.

The spiritual head of a home, church, Sunday school class, Bible study group, etc. assumes his responsibility by meeting the needs of those under his care. Being a leader is an awesome responsibility, not a right to be demanded. A wise leader listens carefully to the counsel of his charges and depends on the Holy Spirit. With the Holy Spirit's enablement, he can live a righteous life out of which he can lead with loving authority.

As spiritual leaders, we must try to be Jesus like and base our leadership in the quality, conduct and character of our life. We may speak with authority if what we say is true according to God's Word and when our motive is one of love.
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 25, 2011 at 8:16am
There was an old man who lived in an island settlement with his young grandson. Each morning, Grandpa was up early sitting at the kitchen table reading from his old worn-out Bible.

His grandson who wanted to be just like him tried to imitate him in any way he could. One day the grandson asked, 'Papa, I try to read the Bible just like you but I don't understand it, and what I do understand I forget as soon as I close the book. What good does reading the Bible do?'

The Grandfather quietly turned and said, 'Take the basket in the corner and go to the pump and bring back a basket of water.'

The boy did as he was told, even though all the water leaked out be fore he could get back to the house. The grandfather laughed and said, 'You will have to move a little faster next time,' and sent him back to the pump with the basket to try again.

This time the boy ran faster, but again the old basket was empty before he returned home. Out of breath, he told his grandfather that it was 'impossible to carry water in a basket,' and he went to get a bucket instead.

The old man said, 'I don't want a bucket of water; I want a basket of water. You can do this. You're just not trying hard enough,' and he went out the door to watch the boy try again.

At this point, the boy knew it was impossible, but he wanted to show his grandfather that even if he ran as fast as he could, the water would leak out before he got far at all. The boy pumped the water and ran hard, but when he reached his grandfather the basket was again empty.

Out of breath, he said, 'See Papa, it's useless!' 'So you think it is useless?' the old man said. 'Look at the basket.'

The boy looked at the basket and for the first time he realized that the basket looked different. Instead of a dirty old basket, it was clean.

'Son, that's what happens when you read the Bible. You might not understand or remember everything, but when you read it, it will change you from the inside out.'

Moral of the basket story: Take time to read a portion of God's word each day;it will affect you for good even if you don't retain a word
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 24, 2011 at 8:00am
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer.
Psalm 19:14



A careless word may kindle strife;

A cruel word may wreck a life.

A bitter word may hate instill;

A brutal word may smite and kill.

A gracious word may smooth the way;

A joyous word may light the day.

A timely word may lessen stress;

A loving word may heal and bless.



Author unknown
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 14, 2011 at 7:27am
He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? Romans 8:32

What does the word freedom bring to your mind?

Maybe you imagine the celebrations of our independence, or see images of soldiers in battle. Possibly you think of the flag. Or you might think about your freedom to worship and exercise your faith.

But there is a greater freedom for you than even our national freedom.

It is the freedom of your soul and mine, bought and paid in full by the blood of Jesus Christ. He gave the ultimate price for your freedom, He poured out His blood so we can be free!

Think about how much God loves us. If He would not even spare His only Son, don’t you know He will freely give you all things in Him?

Our Scripture verse today says, “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?”

Please hear me this day. You can be free from addictions, from worry, from fear, from sin, and from death. You can experience liberty, joy, victory, and peace and more.

It all begins by letting Jesus, The Christ, be your deliverer today and everyday for the rest of your life.
Comment by Bishop Christopher Cate on January 13, 2011 at 7:47am
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; Philippians 4:6

My mother told me how, when she was a young girl, her family had a neighbor who frequently came to their back door. Her reason for coming was always the same, "I just wanted to borrow _______." The problem was that she never came at any other time—only when she wanted something.

She said her mother was always gracious and gave her what she wanted, but didn't appreciate her as much as the other neighbors—especially the one who came frequently but never asked for anything. She would simply say, "Just stopped by for a visit."

When it comes to prayer, it is true that God does want us to make our requests known to him, but sometimes I feel my prayers are more, "Give me ... give me ... give me!"

I know God is gracious and does hear and answer my prayers, but how much better it would be to come to him not only in times of trouble and need, but to daily come to him with, "Dear God, I'm just calling in for a visit. What can I do for you today?"
 

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