A YEAR IN THE NOW

On-line Interactive Devotional

January 16: TRADITION FREE!

 

“Thus you have made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition.” (Matthew 15:6)

 ” . . . The phrase ‘one last shaking’ means a thorough housecleaning, getting rid of all the historical and religious junk so that the unshakable essentials stand clear and uncluttered.” (Hebrews 12:27 – The Message)

 

1.  Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because I have declared my independence from meaningless forms, routines and traditions in my life that are contrary to my present reality, and that make the word of God ineffective for me. I am moving past archaic and passé ways of thinking about God or life or myself. The limiting, antiquated ideas and philosophies that I have accumulated over the years are being exposed for the irrelevant relics that they are. I am free to think a new way!

 2. Today I will not believe something just because someone told me to believe it. I will have the confidence to think for myself, and the courage to expose a lie that I have accepted when I recognize that it is, indeed, a lie. I will be able to maintain my love and respect for someone important to me, without feeling obligated to believe everything they say.

3. Today I will consider the word of God as the final authority on every subject.

4. Today I will honor the Lordship of Jesus as the highest priority in my life.

5. Today I will cooperate with the work of the Holy Spirit in my inner man.

6. Today I will reject, resist and renounce all forms of the man-made religion that exalts itself against God’s true Kingdom. I will pull down strongholds in my mind that were imparted to me from the religious system that are contrary to the knowledge of God. Religion is the enemy, and I will have no part of it and its silly fables, false doctrines, and pointless works of the flesh.

7. Today I will enjoy the good traditions from my family, my childhood, my country, my heritage. I will benefit from sage advice – the wisdom of the ages – and from lessons learned by life experience. I will restore the old landmarks, and will be a link to the next generation by passing down what is noble and worth keeping. But I will also know how to discern the difference between healthy, foundational traditions, and the ones that are holding me in the past. In that context, today, I will be tradition-free, and today I will live in the now!

Father, help me to break free of all unnecessary tradition today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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January 16, 2010 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, Jim Earl Swilley, Paradigm Shift | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

October 9: WILDERNESS ADVENTURE!

wilderness

 

“In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the WILDERNESS . . .” (Matthew 3:1)

“While Jesus was living in the Galilean hills, John, called “the Baptizer,” was preaching in the desert country of Judea. His message was simple and austere, like his desert surroundings: ‘Change your life. God’s kingdom is here.’ John and his message were authorized by Isaiah’s prophecy: Thunder in the desert! Prepare for God’s arrival! Make the road smooth and straight!” (Matthew 3:1-3 – The Message)

“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the WILDERNESS . . . From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, ‘Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” (Matthew 4:1, 17)

 

1.  Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because I am not afraid of the wilderness experience, for the preaching of the Kingdom always begins in the wilderness . . . away from the organized paths and paved roads . . . away from the structure of the world system . . . in a place where I must walk by the faith that relies entirely on God’s ability to make ways in the wilderness, and streams in the desert  (Isaiah 43:19).

2.  Today I will repent of long-held paradigms of my personal wilderness, rethinking my present position as Jacob did when he had the vision of heaven’s gate (“Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, ‘Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.’ And he was afraid and said, ‘How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God . . . the gate of heaven!'” – Genesis 28:16, 17). Awaking from my sleep today, I will see my salvation, right where I am in the now, embracing my own wilderness, and saying, “How awesome is THIS place!”

3. Today I will recognize the power and potential that is present in what I have in my hand, for that is where the Kingdom is. The Kingdom is not just at hand, it is at MY hand – it is “handy” — so I will do what I know to do today with excellence and with all of my might  (Ecclesiastes 9:10)!

4.  Today I will find a river of life in the wilderness as John the Baptist did, and I will follow his example and get busy with the work of the Kingdom . . . where I am . . . with what I have to work with . . . just as I am.

5. Today I will preach (prophetically) that the Kingdom is here (Matthew 4:17).

6. Today I will say (conversationally) that the Kingdom is here (Matthew 4:17).

7.  Today I will be happy in the wilderness, and today I will live in the now!

 

Father, help me to discern why I am in the wilderness today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

 

October 9, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, Jim Earl Swilley, Kingdom of God, Moving forward, No Fear, No Limits!, Paradigm Shift, perception | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

June 24: BRIGHT FUTURE!

bright future

 
 “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”  (Matthew 6:34 – The Message)   
 
  

 1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because my attention is on the Kingdom, and the Kingdom is always in the now.

 2. Today I will not worry about what’s coming up, because the things that I am dreading may not even happen, and the unknown things are impossible to prepare for. But regardless of what tomorrow brings, I will face it with the confident assurance that the Lord perfects all that concerns me.

3. Today I will run toward the giants that intimidate me, the way David ran toward Goliath. I will not give place to cowardice, but will be aggressive enough to intimidate the thing that is trying to intimidate me!

4. Today I will have no fear of the unknown, but will anticipate the adventure with appreciation for the attitude of authority that I have attained through accepting the Word of God as an absolute anchor for the soul!

5. Today I will start making plans to go to a higher level, preparing myself for new responsibilities.

6. Today I will believe that my latter is going to be greater than my former as I go from glory to glory.

7. Today I will enjoy the day, believing that tomorrow will be even better. I will protect my dreams and visions today, and today I will live in the now!

 

 

 

 

 
Father, help me be ready for what’s ahead, and thank You, in advance, for how good it’s all going to turn out for me. In Jesus’ name, amen.

June 24, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, faith, Jim Earl Swilley, Keep Believing, Kingdom of God, Moving forward, No Fear, No Limits!, opportunity, Peace of Mind, perception, possibilities, vision | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

April 2: KINGDOM KEYS!

open-doors1

 

 

 

And that’s not all.  You will have complete and free access to God’s kingdom,

keys to open any and every door:  no more barriers between heaven and earth,

earth and heaven.  A yes on earth is a yes in heaven.  A no on earth is no in heaven.

(Matthew 16:19 The Message)

 

1.       Today I will live in the now!  I will live in the now by accepting the responsibility that rests in the reception of the Keys of the Kingdom.  There was transference of authority and a transition of power that transpired when Jesus transmitted those Keys to His church in the earth and, as a part of that church, I am a shareholder in His authority!

 

2.       Today I will make a positive difference in the world by bringing about positive changes in my life.  I cannot alter my world without being willing to alter myself, and I can’t change myself until I change my mind!  I will, therefore, stop ignoring the obvious Kingdom Keys in my mental and emotional possession today and will use them to transform my losing patterns into winning skills.

 

3.       Today I will do something significant to improve my attitude so that I can impact others for good and better the conditions around me.  Through my own Kingdom Keys, I have the power within me to make definite demands on heaven that will affect my inner world—my thought processes, my personality, my world-view—causing His will to be done in my mind as it is in heaven!

 

4.       Today I will reject any form of a victim mentality because I am empowered by His authority.  His Kingdom Keys in my mouth will help to advance His rule on the earth in my sphere of influence, so I will talk up my victories in Him and play down my weaknesses.  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!

 

5.       Today I will believe for the impossible, using the Kingdom Keys of faith and vision.  I will take the lid off the box and let the dreams flow and grow to expand my borders and broaden my horizons.  I will see my problems in a whole new way today and will find a second wind within me that will enable me to easily overcome them.  I will run and not be weary; I will walk and not faint!

 

6.       Today I will be a building block in the true church and the gates of Hades, the unseen realm, will not prevail against me in my endeavors to advance the Kingdom.  Keys to deliverance and the pulling down of strongholds will be easily accessible to me today.

 

7.       Today I will use the Keys to unlock my destiny as a liberator, a visionary and a reconciler.   A new door is opening for me today, and today I will live in the now!

 

Father, thank You for the Keys to Your Kingdom.

Help me to use them effectively today.  In Jesus’ name, amen

April 2, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Jim Earl Swilley, Kingdom of God, No Limits! | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

March 28: EXPRESS YOURSELF!

express-yourself

 

…out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things,and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things.

  (Matthew 12:34, 35)

 

…but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—  (Ephesians 4:15)

 

1.       Today I will live in the now!  I will live in the now because there is a miracle in my mouth that is ready to be manifested as I move through this day, motivated by the momentum that comes from magnifying the Lord!  Out of the heart are the issues of life and, through my words today, I will release God-life into the earth.

 

2.       Today I will tell the truth about myself, meticulously dispelling the myths of mediocrity that  I have manufactured in my mind and finding a victorious voice for the verification of my true value as a viable visionary!

 

3.       Today I will make my words work for me.  “But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed.  For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me.  And I say to this one, ‘Go’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this’ and he does it” (Matthew 8:8, 9).

 

4.       Today I will not deny my feelings, but I will communicate them to others.  Because I am secure with my sense of adequacy, I can recognize, acknowledge and share my true experiences and emotions.

 

5.       Today I will speak up when something happens that annoys or frustrates me.  As Jesus commanded, I will go directly to the person involved.  I won’t allow negative reactions to collect, fester and grow.  I will speak up and release my anger, when necessary.  By speaking the truth in love, I will be able to maintain fellowship and friendships and still be able to discuss and dispel grievances.

 

6.       Today I will release my faith by the words of my mouth, believing that what I say with my mouth—and believe with my heart—will come to pass.  This mountain before me will be cast into the sea!

 

7.       Today I will let no corrupt word proceed out of my mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers (Ephesians 4:29).  Life is in the power of the tongue, so today I will communicate like the true conqueror that I am, expressing myself to God and to the people around me.  My words will put me over in all the affairs of life today: living truly, speaking truly, finding victory through vocabulary.  Today I will win this round of the game of life, and today I will live in the now!

 

Father, grant me the courage to effectively express myself today.

In Jesus’ name, amen.

March 28, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, Jim Earl Swilley, Power of Words | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

March 4: LOVE YOURSELF!

 

love-yourself1

 

“Jesus said, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others AS WELL AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.” (Matthew 22:37-40 – The Message)”. . . he who loves his wife LOVES HIMSELF. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.” (Ephesians 5:28, 29) 

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now, because the power of God’s unconditional love allows and enables me to live my life in the present. Because I am accepted in the Beloved, I can give myself permission to love myself as I am now, knowing that I am improving by continually being conformed to His image.

2. Today I will love myself without being conceited, arrogant, puffed up with pride, or condescending. I will not feel inferior to anyone else, nor will I feel superior to anyone else, but will be balanced and mature in the way that I relate to everyone around me.

3. Today I will love myself, and still maintain a mindset of servitude and humility. I will selflessly consider the needs of others by taking up my cross to follow Jesus.

4. Today I will forgive myself for the ways in which I have disappointed myself. I will stop being angry with myself, and punishing myself for my mistakes, having the same patience with myself that God has with me.

5. Today I will speak well of myself, building a healthy self-esteem with verbal building blocks. I will not sin against my own potential by speaking self-destructive words, but will say about my life what God says about it, because I am in agreement with His word.

6. Today I will be good and kind to myself. I will not feel guilty for doing something nice just for me, with no obligation to any bogus, religious ideas of my own unworthiness.

7. Today I will walk in the God kind of love with the people in my life, and will be a blessing to them. They will see Jesus in me today, and today I will live in the now!

 

 

 

 

 
Father, give me the courage to love myself today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

March 4, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, forgiveness, Jim Earl Swilley, Love, self-esteem, self-image | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

February 26: BE NICE!


  

“It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong].”
(1 Corinthians 13:5 – AMP)

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because, in Christ, I have the ability to become the person that I have always wanted to be. Because of the unique work that the Spirit of God is doing in my heart and personality, I can love others unconditionally, treating them respectfully, as God treats me with respect and affectionate kindness. They will not have to suffer because of my unfinished business and unresolved issues, because the character of Christ will enable me to keep my relationships in proper perspective.

2. Today I will allow the river of the Christ-life to flow out from my inner man, into the world around me, so that I can be a blessing to humanity, and a Kingdom world-changer. I will be loving, helpful, friendly, cooperative, empathetic, and understanding today. The fruit of the Spirit operating in my life will feed and satisfy the hungry souls of those who come into contact with me, causing me to be attractive in an authentic, godly, and life-affirming way.

3. Today I will not retaliate where my enemies or accusers are concerned, knowing that vengeance belongs to the Lord, and He will vindicate me. I will experience the power of turning the other cheek, and the soft answer that turns away wrath. I will not wrestle with flesh and blood today, and will agree with my adversary quickly when I am in the way with him. Today I will not be overcome with evil, but will overcome evil with good, my ways pleasing the Lord so that even my enemies will be at peace with me. If God is for me, who can be against me?

4. Today I will be blessed because I am a peacemaker, and will be called a son of God (Matthew 5:9). I will obtain mercy because I will be merciful to others (5:7).

5. Today I will be a bridge-builder, because God has given me the ministry and word of reconciliation. I will endeavor to wage war against hatred, strife, division, bigotry and prejudice when I see evidence of it, by the hidden weapons of the Spirit of God in me.

6. Today Jesus will live big in me, and will even love the unlovable through me. Love never fails, and love will put me over!

7. Today I will win by doing the right thing, and today I will live in the now!

 

 

 
Father, help me to love like You today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

February 27, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, relationships | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

February 19: HELP SOMEBODY!

 

“And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'” (Matthew 25:40) helping-hands2

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because of my God-given ability to move beyond the limits of my selfishness, into the universe of usefulness. I will make my life count today by being a blessing . . . translating what I believe into what I do . . . making a positive difference in the surrounding environment.2. Today I will make a genuine effort to bring Kingdom solutions to the people in the world around me, using my covenant prosperity to be a blessing to mankind. I am a giver . . . a contributor . . . a benefactor . . . a participator in the pursuit of purpose . . . an opener of doors and a builder of bridges.

3. Today I will invest in my future as I sow into relationships that will prove to be part of my destiny. I will lend a helping hand, knowing that I may need help later. “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9, 10).

4. Today I will look beyond the faults of those who need my help, and will supply their need, to the best of my ability, with a spirit of non-judgmental, unconditional love. I will help someone, just because it is the right thing to do.

5. Today my mind will be full of ideas of how to help, and my creativity will give birth to those ideas. I will be a light in the darkness . . . a healer . . . a world changer.

6. Today I will really listen to God, and to the people who need my help. I will follow His leading in how to meet needs, and I will hear with spiritual ears the cries of the hearts of those that He has placed around me. The field is the world, and I will be a laborer in the harvest.

7. Today I will not be overwhelmed by the demands of those who need my help, because the Spirit – the Paraclete – the Helper – will be with me today to help me as I help others. By His grace I will do what I can, but I will also rest in Him, and cast my care on Him, because the government is on His shoulder. Today I will help to make the world a better place in which to live, and today I will live in the now!

 
Father, show me how to be there today for someone who really needs my help – help me to be helpful. In Jesus’ name, amen.

February 19, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, Giving, Kingdom of God, relationships | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

February 18: FORGIVE SOMEBODY

   
 
“For if you forgive people their trespasses [their reckless and willful sins, leaving them, letting them go, and giving up resentment], your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their trespasses . . . neither will your Father forgive you your trespasses.” (Matthew 6:14, 15 – AMP)

pray

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because I will not be tied to the past by the familiarity of my resentments. My ability in Christ to forgive will be a path into the present for me, and a bridge to my better future. Forgiveness will create a world of possibilities for me, enabling me to rise above the fray, and to move on to greatness.

2. Today I will have a realistic grasp of the definition of forgiveness. I will know what it is, and what it is not. I can forgive without having to condone or accept the actions of someone who has seriously wronged me, with the awareness that, even though I have released them from their debt, things may never be the same between us again.

3. Today I will manage my time wisely. I will not fall into the trap of going over and over again in my mind or in my words the injustices done to me. I will not waste someone else’s time by talking to them about situations over which they have no control or influence. I will be sensitive to the Spirit when He tells me that it is the time for me to be silent.

4. Today I will experience a sense of relief from the stress caused by the maintenance of a grudge. As I forgive, I set myself free from oppression and negative emotions and will walk in supernatural peace today, knowing that I AM forgiven because I HAVE forgiven. This peace will cause me to be healthier spiritually and even physically – free from the “dis – ease” that causes disease.

5. Today I will experience a genuine flow in my life as I remove the obstacles and barriers that bitterness has built in me. My mind will be clear today – my thoughts undistracted – my heart free from impurities – which will allow me to be highly productive and effective in my sphere of influence.

6. Today love will prevail, and Jesus will rule and reign through me as I demonstrate His forgiveness on earth as in heaven. The sins that I remit will be remitted, and His Kingdom will come today!

7. Today I will be empowered by the ability to forgive . . . even 70 x 7 will be possible to me because faith works by love. The freedom flowing through me by forgiveness will prove that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me today, and today I will live in the now!

 

 
Father, help me to forgive someone today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

February 18, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Agape, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, forgiveness, Kingdom of God, Love, possibilities, relationships | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

February 17: LIVIN’ LARGE!

 
 
“I called upon the LORD in distress: the LORD answered me, and set me in a LARGE PLACE. The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me? . . . It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.”

(Psalms 118:5, 6, 8 – KJV)

 

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because I am free to be myself in God, with no need to try to be something or someone that I am not. No man can DEFINE MY PERSONALITY. “Don’t set people up as experts over your life, letting them tell you what to do. Save that authority for God; let Him tell you what to do. No one else should carry the title of ‘Father’; you have only one Father, and He’s in heaven” (Matthew 23:9, The Message).

2. Today I will live in a large place because no man can DETERMINE MY POTENTIAL! “It is God Himself who has made us what we are . . . ” (Ephesians 2:10, Living Bible).

3. Today I will live in a large place because no man can DETER MY PROGRESS! “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid” (Psalm 27:1)? “. . . If God is for me, who can be against me” (Romans 8:31)?

4. Today I will live in a large place because no man can DELAY MY PROMOTION! For promotion comes neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge; He puts down one, and sets up another (Psalm 75:6, 7).

5. Today I will live in a large place because no man can DECREASE MY PROSPERITY! “The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it” (Proverbs 10:22).

6. Today I will live in a large place because no man can DESTROY MY POSSIBILITIES! “. . . With men it is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26).

7. Today I will live in a large place because no man can DEFEAT MY PURPOSE! “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, who are the called according to His PURPOSE” (Romans 8:28). The only person who could stop me today is me – but, since I believe in myself, I will help myself have a true Kingdom day of progress and productivity in Christ. Today is a big day for me, and today I will live in the now!

 

 
Father, help me to live the Kingdom life, as You live big in me today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

February 17, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, possibilities | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment