Forgiving Day-by-Day

To Cap or to Cure?

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Scripture

Isaiah 65:1-2 (NLT)

The LORD says, "I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help. I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for me. I said, 'Here I am, here I am!' to a nation that did not call on my name. All day long I opened my arms to a rebellious people. But they follow their own evil paths and their own crooked schemes."

Consider

In the aftermath of a hurtful event, when it's time to choose whether we will cling to our bitterness or turn to God for relief and healing, why do we so often choose the dark path of bitterness?

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Love In the Ruins

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Scripture

Isaiah 49:14-16 (NLT)

Yet Jerusalem says, "The LORD has deserted us; the Lord has forgotten us."

"Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for the child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands. Always in my mind is a picture of Jerusalem's walls in ruins."

Consider

Loving parents feel their children's pain. They hurt when their children are disappointed or abused. They may shed tears along with the child who grieves for a lost pet or a painful separation.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Blurry Vision

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Scripture

Mark 8:22-25 (NIV)

They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man's eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, "Do you see anything?"

He looked up and said, "I see people; they look like trees walking around."

Once more Jesus put his hands on the man's eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Debt Relief

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Scripture

Job 40:1; 41:11 (NLT)

Then the LORD said to Job, "Who has given me anything that I need to pay back? Everything under heaven is mine."

Consider

Especially in our Western culture, we like to pay our own way. We don't like accepting gifts if we cannot reciprocate. We establish elaborate scales to balance debt and social obligations, keeping track of who owes whom what and how much.

This policy of social balance can make it difficult for us to accept God's gift of grace because we cannot pay for it.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Looking Like Jesus

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Scripture

Matthew 12:33 (NIV)

"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit."

Consider

Everyone knows a cherry tree will produce cherries and a walnut tree will produce walnuts. The tree has no choice but to produce fruit according to the nature it was given by its Creator. When it comes to people, however, our fruit-bearing nature does become a matter of choice. Jesus told his disciples that if we are willing to be grafted into him, then our Creator will transform our nature from the inside out.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Beautiful Feet

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Scripture

Isaiah 52:7 (NRSV)

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger who announces peace, who brings good news, who announces salvation, who says to Zion, "Your God reigns."

Consider

We all love to hear good news. More than that, we need to hear good news. When our world feels burdened with one dark story after another, telling of cruelty and violence and despair, a story of heroism or generosity calls to us like a beam of sunlight through a bank of storm clouds. Reminders of goodness in the world hearten and refresh us with reasons to hope.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Sing A New Song

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Scripture

Psalm 96:1-2 (NRSV)

O sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth.

Sing to the LORD, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day.

Consider

Everyone faces make-or-break situations. Something comes along and hits us so hard that we either crumble or find the strength to grow and change through the adversity. Factors that determine whether we will grow or crumble can be age and temperament, the support of peers, physical and emotional health, skills we have acquired in dealing with disappointments and injustices, and the stability of our self-image.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

The Flawed Follower

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Scripture

John 18:12, 15-16 (NLT)

So the soldiers, their commanding officer, and the Temple guards arrested Jesus and tied him up. Simon Peter followed Jesus, as did another of the disciples. That other disciple was acquainted with the high priest, so he was allowed to enter the high priest's courtyard with Jesus. Peter had to stay outside the gate. Then the disciple who knew the high priest spoke to the woman watching at the gate, and she let Peter in.

Consider

We all know what happened next. When challenged about his acquaintance with Jesus, Peter denied knowing him.

in Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day

Twelve Gifts of Christmas – Reflecting

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Thanks for following this twelve-part series, "Twelve Gifts of Christmas." I pray that God stretched your heart as he did mine as we practiced sharing his love and grace with others in simple ways. In case you missed one or two days of the series, all twelve devotionals are provided below. Perhaps you'll even consider making one of the daily pledges a New Year's resolution for 2017.

in Blog, Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day, Sharing the Journey

Twelve Gifts of Christmas – Day 12

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Today's Gift

Give the reason for your hope.

On this final day, be clear in your mind and in your heart who Jesus is and why you celebrate his birth this season. Answer for yourself how believing in Jesus gives you hope and a future, and then be ready to tell others. Confess to someone today how Christ's coming into the world has made a difference in your life.

in Blog, Devotional, Forgiving Day-by-Day, Sharing the Journey

Bridge to the Past by Judith Ingram – Prologue by Judith Ingram

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A Devotional Walk With Forgiveness – Week 1 Day 1 by Judith Ingram

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Borrowed Promises by Judith Ingram – Chapter 1 by Judith Ingram

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