Devotional Blog

Luke 15:20-24 Authority Over Relationships: Restoration and Forgiveness

Luke 15:20-24 New Century Version (NCV)
20 So the son left and went to his father. “While the son was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt sorry for his son. So the father ran to him and hugged and kissed him. 21 The son said, ‘Father, I have sinned against God and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’[a] 22 But the father said to his servants, ‘Hurry! Bring the best clothes and put them on him. Also, put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 And get our fat calf and kill it so we can have a feast and celebrate. 24 My son was dead, but now he is alive again! He was lost, but now he is found!’ So they began to celebrate.

Last week we learned how to take authority over our health and seek healing. This week, we are taking authority over our relationships. As Genesis 2:22 reveals to us, God does not want us to be alone, but rather in relationship with others, whether it is romantic or platonic.

Consider the following:
The Prodigal son’s story illustrates the power of forgiveness and restoration. In this story, the younger son asked for his inheritance and when his request was granted by his father he quickly squandered his fortune. After returning home empty handed and with the spirit of shame weighing on his conscious, his father surprisedly opens up his arms and welcomes him home. Later on in the scripture we discover that the eldest son rejects the idea of acceptance and love for his younger brother, but the father reminds him that one day he will inherit everything, and that they should still celebrate the return of the younger son because he was lost and is now found.

The father in this parable represents God’s love for us and the restorative power of His mercy. Today, God wants to remind us that we can have authority over our relationships and if we are praying for restoration and forgiveness we are able to seek it out through the Holy Spirit. Due to the father forgiving and accepting his son, the son is now back in alignment to receive God’s blessings and God’s vision for his life. Remember, there is no relationship that God cannot heal, fix, or bring together.

If you are on this call and are waiting for God to…

  1. Break generational curses, God says “Repent, and I will come; Enter into my courts and I will deliver”

  2. Help you forgive those who have hurt you, God says “Open your heart, so I can fill it”

  3. Present to you your husband or wife, God says “Trust in me and lean not into your own understanding”

  4. Bring love back into your relationship, God says “Put me in the center of your life and relationship”

Here is a short prayer you can recite to receive authority: God, please give me authority over my relationships. I bind up every generational curse; every demonic force or illegitimate sacrifice that is in my linage all the way back to Adam and Even; I pray that the spirit of un-forgiveness is destroyed; and abuse to my body by myself or others no longer controls me for I am yours and have been made whole. I cover my relationships with your blood. I believe that all things will be renewed, healed, and united in your name. In Jesus name we pray, amen.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

James 5:14-15 Authority Over Health

James 5:14-15
“Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven.”

Last week we started this Lenten Season with understanding that God wants us to take authority over our lives. In our scripture lesson, Jesus calls upon the elders of the church to pray and anoint the sick with oil. Yes, Jesus could have done this himself, but he choose vessels to do God’s work and we are vessels! As our scripture reminds us, “the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well” or in other words, our belief in the power of the Holy Spirit will give us the authority to heal the sick. All we have to do is have faith, listen for God's instruction so our steps will be ordered, and be obedient. Thus, if you have been asking God for healing today, I encourage you to pray over yourself with faith and authority. 


Consider the following:

If you are asking God for healing, God wants you to get connected to the body of Christ to pray, God wants you to bind up any works of the enemy, and God wants you to not only pray for your situation but for others who are sick as well. For example, two weeks ago, a family asked for prayer over their sick child and here is what God revealed:

1. There is power when two or more are gathered in His name

2. We can have God's authority if we believe in His healing powers

3. God will use us even in difficult situations 

Today, I encourage you to know there is power in community and power in faith. Here is a prayer you can say during this season as you take authority over your health:

God, please give me authority over my health. I bind up every disease, illness, or pain in my body. I cover my health with your blood. I believe that all things will be healed in your name.  Amen.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Jeremiah 1:5 God at the Center: When We Stand With Christ, We are Given Authority

Jeremiah 1:5
"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations."

Who in here is ready for a radical change in your life? Are you tired of standing on the sidelines and asking God to put you into the game of life? Well, today’s scripture lets us know that God has already given us a starting position, but it is up to us to do the following:

  1. Believe in our abilities and gifts

  2. Put in the Work 

  3. Come everyday to play to the best of our ability 

Today marks the beginning of the Lenten Season and God wants us to understand the following truths:

When we make God the Center of our lives…

  1. We are set apart

  2. We will be appointed to be a prophet

  3. We will activate our purpose

In addition, to these truths God wants to give us authority over our lives, and authority to do His work here on earth. Before God can trust us to handle the work of the Lord, He invites us to make Him the center of our lives. The key word here is “invite” which means we have to make the choice and commitment to be in covenant with God, but more importantly open our hearts for His love. God wants to be interwoven into every aspect of lives because God is embedded in our DNA and nervous system….traveling through our blood...God is our true essence. God wants us to exist only for Him and His mission.

Consider the following:
Are you walking in your God-given purpose and using your gifts to bring forth God’s Word? Has fear, shame, or doubt gotten in the way of you being able to walk with authority? God wants to remind us during this season that He can turn a “test” into a “testimony” and a “mess” into a “message” and that everyone and everything can be used for his glory. We are all called to be disciples and today God is putting us to the test. Are you ready? In the following weeks leading up to Easter, we are going to explore the areas of our lives that God wants to give us authority over:

Authority over Health

Authority over Relationships

Authority over Finances

Authority over your Purpose

Here are short prayers that you can pray everyday pertaining to these areas: 

God, please give me authority over my health. I bind up every disease, illness, or pain in my body. I cover my health with your blood. I believe that all things will be healed in your name.

God, please give me authority over my relationships. I bind up every generational curse, unforgiveness, and abuse in my body. I cover my relationships with your blood. I believe that all things will be renewed, healed, and united in your name.

God, please give me authority over my finances. I bind up every debt, area of lack, and negative mindset. I cover my finances with your blood. I believe that things will be restored and multiplied in your name.

God, please give me authority over my purpose. I bind up every false idol, fear, or doubt. I cover my purpose with your blood. I believe that my purpose will be revealed to me and activated to do your work in your name. 

God, I believe in your power and I know that with your will I can walk on water. 

In your name I pray. Amen.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

1 Samuel 16:1-13 Your Oil Has Your Name On It

1 Samuel 16:1-13 (NLT)
Now the Lord said to Samuel, “You have mourned long enough for Saul. I have rejected him as king of Israel, so fill your flask with olive oil and go to Bethlehem. Find a man named Jesse who lives there, for I have selected one of his sons to be my king.” But Samuel asked, “How can I do that? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.” “Take a heifer with you,” the Lord replied, “and say that you have come to make a sacrifice to the Lord. Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you which of his sons to anoint for me.” So Samuel did as the Lord instructed. When he arrived at Bethlehem, the elders of the town came trembling to meet him. “What’s wrong?” they asked. “Do you come in peace?” “Yes,” Samuel replied. “I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Purify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” Then Samuel performed the purification rite for Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice, too. When they arrived, Samuel took one look at Eliab and thought, “Surely this is the Lord’s anointed!” 7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.Then Jesse told his son Abinadab to step forward and walk in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “This is not the one the Lord has chosen.” Next Jesse summoned Shimea,[a] but Samuel said, “Neither is this the one the Lord has chosen.” 10 In the same way all seven of Jesse’s sons were presented to Samuel. But Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen any of these.” 11 Then Samuel asked, “Are these all the sons you have?” “There is still the youngest,” Jesse replied. “But he’s out in the fields watching the sheep and goats.” “Send for him at once,” Samuel said. “We will not sit down to eat until he arrives.” 12 So Jesse sent for him. He was dark and handsome, with beautiful eyes. And the Lord said, “This is the one; anoint him.” 13 So as David stood there among his brothers, Samuel took the flask of olive oil he had brought and anointed David with the oil. And the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David from that day on. Then Samuel returned to Ramah.

Last week we discussed seeing life from God’s view and we explored how and why life is a temporary assignment. This week we are going to finish this series on purpose by knowing our oil has our name on it, and that is why we should stand firm in knowing we have purpose.

Consider the following:
Since the beginning of this series we’ve discussed the difference between being successful and living on and in purpose. It was emphasized that having a relationship with God was critical so you could believe that God purposed you. We were also reminded that we are not accidents and that God has indeed purposed us, which is why it is important to remember what drives our lives.  Today’s scripture encapsulates each one of those points and confirms that God sees what others may disregard. 

First, today’s scripture emphasizes that God’s work goes beyond any person, and God will never allow God’s work to die with the death or failure of any one person. However, we must be obedient to God when God provides instruction. It is understandable to be nervous or have some fear similar to Samuel. When God calls us out and sets us a part, but it is necessary to trust God anyhow. However, our scripture indicates that God told Samuel that he will show Samuel what to do. This should comfort us in knowing that when God calls us to do something and when God has instruction for us, God will not leave us out in the dark, God will be by our side. Further, our scripture lesson illustrates that God is raising up leaders for God’s people and God will keep them obscure and hidden until the right time. This informs us to be patient with God. You may be trying to find your purpose in life or you may even feel like you are living out your purpose, but God may have greater in store for you. In addition, God does not judge us by our outward appearance, which is why it is important to know what drives our lives. For example, at the time of our text, Saul was the king and he looked the part but Saul did not have the heart a king of God’s people should have. Lastly, our text indicates that people including family and friends may count you out and you may not even be invited to the table because they do not think you are worthy. However, I invite you today to know that God often chooses unlikely people to do God’s work — purpose, not man’s work. Just remember, those who are often rejected by man are loved and purposed by God. 

Today, I encourage you to know that your oil has your name on it, so stand firm in knowing that God has purposed you. Like David, be in the field, tend to the sheep, mind your own business, do not compare yourselves to others, and know that when you keep a close relationship with God, your purpose undoubtedly will reveal itself in due time. 

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Romans 12: 2 Seeing Life from God’s View / Matthew 25:21 Life is a Temporary Assignment

Romans 12:2 (NIV)
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Matthew 25:21 (NIV)
His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’

Last week God instructed a pause on this theme so we could pray for our youth. This week we will resume focusing on two topic areas: Seeing Life from God’s View and Life is a Temporary Assignment.

Consider the following:
Rick Warren posed the question, “have you ever paused to consider the you may be basing your life on a faulty metaphor? He encouraged us to be reminded of today’s scripture, and adhere to the three metaphors the Bible offers: Life is a test, life is a trust, and life is temporary.  

He suggested while on earth, life is a test because God continually tests people’s character, faith, obedience, love, integrity and loyalty. Warren wrote, “Words like trials, temptations, refining, and testing occur more than 200 times in God’s Word.” For example, we read about success stories of when God tested Abraham by asking him to offer his son Isaac and Jacob to work extra years for Rachel to be his wife. We also read about failed tests, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden and King David on several occasions. To take it a step further, God tested the character of Joseph, Ruth, Esther and Daniel and they all passed. You ARE ALWAYS being tested, that is how character is developed and revealed, and God will test us through major changes, delayed promises, impossible problems, unanswered prayers, undeserved criticism, and even senseless tragedies.

Life is a trust because God is entrusting us with all the gifts He bestowed upon us, such as time, energy, intelligence, opportunities, relationships, and resources. Our second scripture lesson spoke to this point, that God wants to give us many things, but it is our duty to show faithfulness over few things. 

Life is temporary and God repeatedly reminds us by allowing us to feel a significant amount of discontent and dissatisfaction in life — longings that will never be fulfilled on this side of eternity. Warren suggests that realizing earth is a temporary assignment should radically alter our values.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Ecclesiastes 3:11 Made to Last Forever

Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NLT)
Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.

Last week we finished examining unhealthy “drivers” of our life. This week we are going to explore how God designed us to last forever.

Consider the following:
Rick Warren wrote that we have an inborn instinct that longs for immortality, yet our earthly body is just a temporary residence for our spirit (p. 28). Thus, it is necessary to think about how our mentality of immortality impacts our decisions as well as the influencers in our lives. He presses his claim by saying “our relationship to God on earth will determine our relationship to him in eternity” (p. 28). These are important topics to fully understand because it provides the context as to why we should strive for purpose over success. It gives us a better understanding of the need for us to be driven by our relationship with Christ instead of others or even earthly things. When we digest that this life is temporary and eternity is with God, then we start to live with the mindset that there is more to life than just the here and now. As our scripture reminds us, God planted eternity in our hearts, therefore, we must combat the most damaging aspect of contemporary living — short-term thinking. It is important to disengage from short-term thinking because our time here on earth is minuscule in comparison to eternity, but the consequences of our decisions here on earth will last forever. 

Today, I encourage everyone to continue to ponder about the why we are made to last forever and if our lifestyle reflects that we believe we are truly made to last forever. Remember, our body is just a temporary residence for our spirit so disengage from short-term thinking.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Matthew 6:24 What Drives Your Life? Part II

Matthew 6:24 (NLT)
“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.”

Last week we started exploring what drives our lives. We looked at common drivers such as guilt, resentment, and fear, and how these drivers manifest when we become manipulated by our memories. This week we are going to look at how the materialism and the need for approval can drive our lives. . 

Consider the following:
Rick Warren suggested that people who are driven by materialism have a desire to acquire which turns into the whole goal of their lives. While others allow opinions and the expectations of friends, family, partners, and non-factors to control their lives. Both of these toxic drivers are true thieves of purpose. As our scripture lesson informs us, we can not serve two masters. In our scripture lesson, Jesus is instructing us to keep our focus on him and counseling us on not having worldly-mindedness. Being driven by things and living for man’s approval instead of God’s approval is an entry way to sin and a purposeless life. Furthermore, these two drivers often lead to depression and anxiety because you are constantly feeling that you do not have enough, you are not doing enough, and you are not enough. On the contrary, when you put Jesus at the forefront of your life He validates that you are enough because your net worth and quantity of friends with their two cents of advice does not determine your self worth! This is why when you get in your spirit that God has purposed you, trivial, petty, and pointless interactions and “things” will not move your spirit. You will be driven by purpose thus striving for a stronger relationship with Christ.  

He suggests there are practical benefits of living a purpose-driven life: 1) knowing your purpose gives meaning to your life — when life has meaning you can bare almost anything, 2) knowing your purpose simplifies your life — your purpose becomes the standard you use to evaluate which activities are essential and which aren’t, 3) knowing your purpose focuses your life — you become effective by being selective because you concentrate your effort and energy on what’s important, 4) knowing your purpose energizes your life — purpose produces passion while purely striving for success can muddle that passion, and 5) knowing your purpose prepares you for eternity — ultimately what matters is what God says about your life, not others (p. 25). 

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Psalm 138:8 He Planned It: You Are Not An Accident

Pslam 138:8 (NLT)
The Lord will work out his plans for my life—for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don’t abandon me, for you made me.

Last week  we explored our manual of life informs us that God predestined and purposed us for greatness. Therefore, start communing with God through prayer so you can get closer to your purpose. This week the Bible reminds us that we are not an accident. 

Consider the following:
Rick Warren wrote, “while there are illegitimate parents, there are no illegitimate children” (p.12). In this quote, he is stating, God used human vessels to create you, thus you are not a mistake and you have been purposed. Despite what angry parents, teachers, or others may have mislead you to believe, you are purposed. Whether you are in a season of confusion, content, or confidence about your purpose, God has not abandoned you. Petition God for your purpose because God thought of you before this world. For example, Ephesians 1:4 indicates, “Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes” (NLT). This reveals to us that God was thinking of us before he even made the world. Hence, why do you think God does not only want us to be successful? Why do you think God wants us to be unhappy? The answer is, He does not. God wants us to purposely flourish and have joy. Today, I encourage you as our scripture reminds us that our God will work out the plan He created for our lives. We need to do our part.  

As previously discussed, the first step is to have a relationship with Him and the second step is to commune with God through prayer so you can get closer to your purpose. Today’s step reminds us to trust in God’s word that God’s love endures forever. Always remember God is love, meaning God knows love, shows love, understands love, and is faithfully unwavering in love with us. 

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Ephesians 1:11 Divine Will: It All Starts with God Part 2

Ephesians 1:11
(NKJV) In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, (NLT)  Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God,[a] for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan

Last week we discussed that our purpose comes from God, and success does not define or confine our purpose. Therefore, in order to understand our purpose we must first have a relationship with God. This week we will continue to explore why it all starts with God and what the word of God says about purpose.  

Consider the following:
In Rick Warren’s exploration of this text, he suggested that our scripture gives us three insights. He wrote, “First, you discover your identity and purpose through a relationship with Jesus Christ. Second, God was thinking of you long before you ever thought about him. Third, the purpose of your life fits into a much larger, cosmic purpose that God has designed for eternity” (p. 9). 

These three insights inform us that God is the author of all things but sin. God is the works of creation and of providence. God is of grace and salvation. In this text some commentators believe that Paul reflects on how God arranged every detail to bring Israel out of Egypt and into the Promised Land. If God can deliver and guide a whole nation to their promise land, can not God guide you to your purpose? When we work according to God’s will in a wise and prudent manner, we see exactly what Wonderful Counselor means. Today, I encourage you to know that our manual of life informs us that God predestined and purposed us for greatness. Therefore, start communing with God through prayer so you can get closer to your purpose. If you want to know what this looks like and have questions, please feel free to contact us at onetemplefitness@7fire8.com.  

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Job 12:10 Divine Will: It All Starts with God

Job 12:10
(NKJV) In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind? (NLT) For the life of every living thing is in his hand, and the breath of every human being

Praise God! God has blessed us to see another year, oh, what a joy! Oh, what a feeling! The number nine represents divine will. As we begin 2019, God wants everyone to know that they have been called for a purpose. Over the next nine weeks leading us to Lent, we will learn more about God’s divine will for our lives and ways to step into it. This series will use nuggets from What on Earth am I here for? by Rick Warren. 

I encourage you to share this series with all people. However, I caution you to know that being successful and living on and in purpose are not the same. God purposed you, so you must believe that God created you for a specific reason. You may be successful, meet your goals, have a financially flourishing life, and still miss your purpose. Thus, the very first step is knowing God and having a personal relationship with him. If you want to know what this looks like and have questions, please feel free to contact us at onetemplefitness@7fire8.com

Consider the following:
If you want to know why you were placed on this planet, you must begin with God, for God purposed us when we were born. Often times in life we ask ourselves self-centered questions — “What do I want to be? and What are my goals?” (p. 5). However, our scripture informs us that God holds and directs every creature on this earth, God has the breath and the life of every human being. Thus, if we want to understand God’s divine will for our life, if we want to know our purpose, then we must seek God first. As the Bible reminds us, God is Alpha — God is the beginning, God is also omniscient — God is all knowing, and God is agape — God is love. Therefore, since God loves us, knows everything, and purposed us from the beginning, then it is imperative that we seek God to obtain our divine will. Warren wrote it this way, “You exist only because God wills that you exist. You were made by God and for God—and until you understand that, life will never make sense. It is only in God that we discover our origin, our identity, our meaning, our purpose, our significance, and our destiny” (p. 5).

Over the next several weeks, we will explore with God these questions: 1) What does the Word say about purpose? 2) Why is it necessary to know our purpose? 3) Can your purpose be multifaceted? 4) How do you discover your purpose? 5) Once discovered, how do you confidently live in it?

Although you may have realizations about your career, find steps to achieve your dreams, and be on a trajectory for planning your life, the main goal is for you to discover your purpose. That way during Lent we will fast, pray and praise so we can live in our purpose. Always remember, God provides revelation and through His word, God will provide you answers. 

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Matthew 4:4 - Five Weeks of Prayer, Praise and Fasting

Matthew 4:4 (NLT)
But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, “People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God”

Over the last two weeks of this year we will be focusing on fasting, praise via testimony, and prayer. Join us as we claim our season of turn around, transformation, greater, healing, elevation, protection, mental wellness, partnership, and financial stability!

*WE WILL HAVE THE LAST PRAYER CALL OF 2018 ON 12/26/18, PLEASE JOIN US!!*

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Exodus 34:28 - Five Weeks of Prayer, Praise and Fasting

Exodus 34:28 (NIV)
Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments.

Over the last three weeks of this year we will be focusing on fasting, praise via testimony, and prayer. Join us as we claim our season of turn around, transformation, greater, healing, elevation, protection, mental wellness, partnership, and financial stability!

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Matthew 6:9-13 - Five Weeks of Prayer, Praise and Fasting

Matthew 6:9-13 (NIV)
“This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation,[a] but deliver us from the evil one.[b]’

Over the last four weeks of this year we will be focusing on fasting, praise via testimony, and prayer. Join us as we claim our season of turn around, transformation, greater, healing, elevation, protection, mental wellness, partnership, and financial stability!

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

1 Chronicles 16:11 - Five Weeks of Prayer, Praise and Fasting

1 Chronicles 16:11 (NIV)
Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.

Over the last five weeks of this year we will be focusing on fasting, praise via testimony, and prayer. Join us as we claim our season of turn around, transformation, greater, healing, elevation, protection, mental wellness, partnership, and financial stability!

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Experiencing God - Reality #7: You Come to Know God by Experience as You Obey Him, and He Accomplishes His Work Through You

John 3:21
But anyone who lives by the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be shown to be accomplished by God.

When you do what God tells you, no matter how impossible or bewildering it may seem, God carries out what He purposed though you. Not only do you experience God’s power and presence, but so do those who observe your life.

Our difficulty in following God isn’t that we don’t know what God desires us to do. Our discomfort comes from the fact that we do know His will, but we don’t want to do it. As God leads you in your Christian growth, He will allow challenges in your life that match your character and relationship with Him. God will not totally change your character at once. Rather, He will lead you through a process to become more like His Son, Jesus. He will keep working in an area of your life until it is controlled by the Holy Spirit.

Obedience to God’s commands always brings fulfillment. When the Lord gives you instructions, obey immediately. Don’t wait until you have figured it all out and everything makes perfect sense to you. Sometimes God leads you to do things that you will not fully understand until after you have done them. He tells you enough for you to implement what He’s said, but He withholds enough information so that you must continue to rely on His guidance.

Even today God is reconciling a world to Himself. Because He loves you, God wants to involve you in His activity. He begins by pursuing a love relationship with you. He then invites you to become involved with Him in His work. As He relates to you, He discloses Himself, His purposes and His ways. If you want to experience God’s mighty power at work in and through you, you must walk by faith, make major adjustments, and immediately obey whatever God tells you to do.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Experiencing God - Reality #6: You Must Make Major Adjustments in Your Life to Join God in What He is Doing

Luke 9:23-24
If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it.

Many of us want God to speak and lead us in His will. We want the excitement of God working through us, but we are reluctant to make any major changes or adjustments so that He will. The Bible reveals that every time God speaks to people about something that He wants to do, they must realign their lives in some way.

Like the Crisis of Belief, the necessity of adjustment is a second point at which many people miss out on experiencing God. To get from where you are to where God will have you to be requires significant adjustments in your life. These adjustments may relate to your thinking, circumstances, relationships, commitments, actions, and beliefs. If you choose to make the necessary adjustments, you can go on to obedience. If you refuse, you could miss what God has in store for your life. Obedience begins in the heart as a willingness to do whatever God says. Obedience is expressed through actin, by words and deeds. Our obedience can be costly—to you and to those around you. In short, you can’t stay where you are and go with God at the same time.

When God speaks, revealing what He is about to do, that revelation is your invitation to adjust your life to God. As you adjust your heart and mind to God, God’s purposes, and God’s ways, you are in a position and posture to obey. You can’t continue business as usual or stay where you are and go with God at the same time. This truth is clearly evident in Scripture. Noah could not continue life as usual and build an ark at the same time. Moses could not stay on the back side of the desert herding sheep and lead the Israelites from Egypt at the same time. David had to leave his sheep in order to become King. Esther could not remain silent before the King and save her people. Saul had to completely change direction in order for God to use him to preach the Gospel.

Enormous changes and adjustments were required whenever God’s people determined to obey God’s calling. Some had to leave family and country, while others had to abandon long held prejudices and reorient their thinking. Men and women were willing to leave behind life goals, ideals, and desires. Everything had to be yielded to God and their entire life adjusted to Him. However, the moment the necessary adjustments were made, God began to accomplish his purposes through them. Each one learned that adjusting one’s life to God is always well-worth the cost.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Experiencing God - Reality #5: God’s Invitation for You to Work with Him Always Leads You to a Crisis of Belief that Requires Faith and Action

Hebrews 11:6
Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe that He exists and rewards those who seek Him.

God wants a watching world to come to know who He truly is. He does not call you to get involved in His activity merely so that people can see what you can do. He calls you to an assignment that you can’t accomplish apart from His divine intervention. God’s assignments have God-sized dimensions. It will be obvious that you cannot do it on your own. If God does not help, you will fail. This doesn’t mean God doesn’t ask us to undertake mundane, seemingly ordinary tasks. But when God is involved in anything, there are always eternal, divine dimensions, implications, and possibilities.

When God asks you to do something you can’t do, you face a crisis of belief. That means, you must decide what you really believe about God. Can God and will God do what He said He wants to do through you? Can God do the seemingly impossible through your ordinary life? The way you respond to God’s invitation reveals what you truly believe about God, regardless of what you say.

This is the crisis point where so many people miss out on experience God’s mighty power working through them. For many, if they cannot understand exactly how everything is going to happen, they choose not to proceed. Then they wonder why they do not experience God presence, power, and activity. God does not want us to merely believe what He says. God wants us to obey what He commands. All of God’s promises and invitations will be meaningless unless we respond with both faith and action.

This crisis is not a disaster or a bad thing. It is a turning point or a fork in the road that calls for a decision. You must decide what you believe about God. How you respond when you reach this turning point will determine whether or not you proceed with God in something only God can do or whether youcontinueonyourownwayandmisswhatGodhaspurposedforyourlife. Moreover,thisisnota one-time experience. How you live your life daily is a testimony of what you believe about God.

God’s assignments have God-sized dimensions. What you believe about God should stretch you beyond your comfort zone. Let God use you in ways you never would have asked, dreamed, or imagined.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Experiencing God - Reality #4: God speaks by the Holy Spirit Through the Bible, Prayer, Circumstances, and the Church to Reveal Himself, His Purposes, and His ways

Hebrews 1:1-2
In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son

Life today is preoccupied with methods. We spend time and energy looking for spiritual disciplines, books, seminars, or conferences that work in order to feel satisfied with our Christian life. But God doesn’t want usto trust in methods. He wants us to trust in Him. Trusting in methods rather than trusting God seriously limits the way we experience God. When we expect God to speak to us only in predictable ways, we forget that God is much more complex than our perception of Him. The means that God uses to communicate with us is irrelevant; the fact that He’s communicating is what is critical. Do you approach the reading of Scripture with a holy expectation, listening for the life-changing words that God has for you that day?

All Scripture is useful, and because every verse of Scripture is inspired by God and gainful to us, we shouldn’t claim verses we like and ignore those that convict us. When bombarded with an assortment of doctrines, lifestyles, and behaviors...if you are not firmly grounded in God’s Word, you will be left without having a means to evaluate whether they are approved by God.

The Key to Knowing God’s Voice: We become familiar with God’s voice as we experience Him. As God speaks and you respond, you will recognize God’s voice more and more readily. Some people try to bypass the love relationship and look for a miraculous sign or try a formula to discover God’s will. But, there is no substitute for an intimate relationship with God.

God doesn’t make suggestions. He speaks with the full determination to see that what He has said will cometo fruition. God gives direction on the front end of His assignments. He may not tell you all you want to know at the start, but He will reveal what you need to know in order to adjust and obey. Your relationship with God is the key to hearing when God speaks to you.

When God spoke to Abraham, Moses, Mary, and others, those events were encounters with God. In the same way, when you encounter the Holy Spirit, that is an encounter with God for you. When the Holy Spirit reveals truth to you, He is not leading you to an encounter with God. That is an encounter with God!

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Experiencing God - Reality #3: God Invites You to Become Involved with Him in His Work

Philippians 2:13
For it is God who is working in you, enabling you both to will and to act for His good purpose

God, the infinitely wise Lord of all creation, already has a purpose and a plan. He does not ask us to dream our dreams for Him or to try our best or our hardest for Him. God already has His own agenda. The almighty Lord of lords and King of kings chooses to personally interact with you to participate in His work.

When God is working, He may reveal His activity to you. That revelation is His invitation for you to join Him in His redemptive work. Be alert to God’s activity around you. The world operates by vision. However, God’s people live by revelation. The world seeks grand, noble purposes and goals to achieve. God’s people function in a radically different way. Christians arrange their lives based on the revelation of God, regardless of whether it makes sense to them.

God’s desire is to get you from where you are to where He is working; and, He leads us from being self- centered to being God-centered. A self-centered person tends to confuse his or her personal agenda with God’s will. God does not ask for our opinions about what is best for our future, our family, our church, or our country. God already knows.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. Isaiah 55:8

Moreover, circumstances alone cannot be a clear direction for God’s leadership. Asking God to close a door if we are not headed in the right direction is an admirable way of seeking what God desires. However, the danger in this thinking lies in assuming that God’s will is always the path of least resistance. To the Israelites, the Red Sea certainly appeared to be a “closed door;” however, because they stayed the course, it proved to be an opportunity to witness the power of God. Seek the Lord’s guidance to be confirmed through Prayer, Scripture and life’s circumstances.

When people choose not to base their lives on God’s revelation, they do what’s right in their own eyes. They set their own goals, arrange their own agendas, and then pray for God’s blessings to achieve them. The only way to know God’s will is for Him to reveal it to you. You will never discover God’s will on your own. If you keep your life God-centered, you will immediately want to participate in His activity when He reveals His plans to you. When you hear from the Lord, you have an immediate agenda for your life: obedience.

Often our struggle as Christians is not deciding whether we should obey the Lord but in whether we will obey immediately. God’s timing is perfect. When God speaks, the time to respond in obedience is now. There’s no such thing as postponing a decision with God. Delayed obedience is disobedience. If God has made something known to you, it’s time to respond.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110

Experiencing God - Reality #2: God Pursues A Love Relationship With You That Is Real and Personal

Mark 12:30
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.

God created humanity for a love relationship with him that is both real and personal. There is nowhere you can go that God will not be present. But He won’t force Himself on you. God may draw you to Himself andwoo you relentlessly, but He won’t take away your ability to reject Him.

You are a person created in the image of God, created to love and be loved. Greater than anything else in your life, remember that you are created for a relationship with God. Never forget that your relationship with God matters most.

  • God pursues us in the relationship. It is God who pursues us, not we who pursue him. He reached out to us first by sending his son Jesus. God places people, events, and questions in our path so we begin to seek him, and everything that we are experiencing from God comes in response to his invitation.

  • It's a relationship of Love. Love is the lens through which God always relates to us, and is at work in us. God settled the question of his love for us at the cross.

  • The relationship is real and personal. God is not distant and unknowable. God reveals himself and intersects in our lives in a way that is real, and we can relate to and understand him.

Your love for God and your obedience to His commands go hand in hand. Obedience is the outward expression of your love for God. If you have an obedience problem, you have a love problem.

“Your relationship with God is the single most important aspect of your life. If you knew that all you had in your life was a relationship with God, would you be totally satisfied? If everything else were removed from you, could you be content having nothing but your relationship with God? Many would answer, ‘Well, I would like to have that relationship, but I would also like to do something.’ Or ‘I would want a relationship with God, but I would also want a spouse and children, a good career, a nice home and friends.’ As wonderful as all of these things are, they cannot provide the key component that God desires to give to us: Himself. If your relationship with God is at the deepest level that He intends, you will find enormous satisfaction and joy in your relationship with him” (Experiencing God, Knowing and Doing the Will of God, p. 85). And, God will satisfy the longing for “all these things” that we desire in life.

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. - Matthew 6:33

More than anything else you may do or obtain, God wants you to love Him with your total being. If your love relationship with God is not close, everything else related to knowing and doing the will of God will be out of order and out focus.

Click Here to Download the Devotional with Reflection Questions

Subscribe to Devotional Blog - F.I.R.E. by Email

Prayer Call every Wednesday, 6:00a.m.-6:15a.m. PST (9:00a.m. EST)

408-638-0968 ID: 680-646-110