Daily Devotional from Pastor Mary 08-25-23

Intro: Faith in God is essential for human life, because only God can save us in our individual times of need. We all face different needs; therefore, our faith has to rise and reach for God knowing he desire to meet us in that place. Maybe some of us are struggling to find a job, deal with health issues, cope with the loss of a loved one, rid ourselves of sinful desires and addictions, or stumbling to walk in obedience with the Spirit. We must use faith to triumph over the things evil is using on a steady basis to destroy our confident trust in God.

Quite honestly, as believers we know an active faith is what pleases God, but at times we are just spiritually “tired” and may struggle to understand how to use our faith in order to bring victory. Have you ever found yourself spiritually fatigued? It’s a real thing! Therefore, spending time in the Word of God sets us up to receive the help we need whether we understand how or why it works or not. Jesus said, “People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes form the mouth of God” (Mat 4:4). Faith is strengthened by our belief in the Living Word of God—Jesus. For this reason, we must draw near to God and his righteousness, place our trust in his love, and ask for him to strengthen and increase our faith.

In our passage today, once again faith is an issue for the disciples because of the past erroneous teaching of the self-righteous religious leaders. They know nothing about the dependance required by Christ’s followers. The disciples have watched Jesus do miracle after miracle and they are strong when they can “see” the evidence of his power with them, but each challenge must be faced with fresh faith and the disciples fail to understand the true Source of the power they need before it manifests.

With every challenge we face, we must apply fresh faith knowing God will accomplish his purposes one way or another. Unfortunately, a little bit of evil can grow and destroy the believer’s trust in Christ. Light and dark cannot co-exist; so, we must choose to live in the Truth, serve the Lord with gladness, and look for the Spirit of Christ to move in our behalf. God is worth trusting and that is the faith we use each day. Blessings for your weekend…

Matthew 16:5-12 NLT Yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees
5 Later, after they crossed to the other side of the lake, the disciples discovered they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6 “Watch out!” Jesus warned them. “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

7 At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread. 8 Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “You have so little faith! Why are you arguing with each other about having no bread? 9 Don’t you understand even yet? Don’t you remember the 5,000 I fed with five loaves, and the baskets of leftovers you picked up? 10 Or the 4,000 I fed with seven loaves, and the large baskets of leftovers you picked up? 11 Why can’t you understand that I’m not talking about bread? So again I say, ‘Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.’”

12 Then at last they understood that he wasn’t speaking about the yeast in bread, but about the deceptive teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for sharing your love with us by warning us about evil. May we cling to you, Jesus, because you are the living Word who alone can help us please the Father. Help us to remain in the Truth and handle each challenging circumstance in life with fresh faith and trust. We know you are with us! In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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