A YEAR IN THE NOW

On-line Interactive Devotional

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.

 

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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

August 21: MAKE CONTACT!

humanity 

 

“Then He turned to the host. ‘The next time you put on a dinner, don’t just invite your friends and family and rich neighbors, the kind of people who will return the favor. Invite some people who never get invited out, the misfits from the wrong side of the tracks. You’ll be – and experience – a blessing. They won’t be able to return the favor, but the favor will be returned – oh, how it will be returned! – at the resurrection of God’s people.'” (Luke 14:12-14 – The Message)

 

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because the love of God in me is enlarging my heart to such a size that it is having to break out (and break free) of the little fortress of selfish interests that I have built around it in a vain attempt to protect it from harm. My enlarged heart will reach out to make contact with someone, even if it is risky . . . even if it is dangerous . . . because there is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear!

2.  Today I will love the unlovable and touch the untouchable. The Christ in me will flow like a river of reconciliation to those who have been rejected and refused. I will gladly fill the role of a good Samaritan when the opportunity presents itself and, in so doing, the Kingdom will come and the will of the Father will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

3. Today I will not be overly and unnecessarily concerned with protecting my reputation when it comes to reaching out to someone who really needs my help. I will lay down my life for them, by the grace of God and the power of the Holy Spirit.

4.  Today I will make time for people and will show a genuine interest in what is happening in their lives. I will show respect for others and make the people around me feel important and special — by making eye contact when we speak; by a firm handshake; by listening and reacting appropriately; by calling people by their names; by displaying good manners; by being thoughtful and considerate; by being helpful and generous; by showing them the real Jesus.

5. Today I will pray for someone else’s needs, taking them as seriously as I would take my own.

6. Today I will communicate to others on their level – relating to them in a real way. I will not be insensitive or judgmental, accepting people as they are and ushering them to the mercy seat of the Christ Who loves them unconditionally.

7. Today I will be kind to strangers, knowing that I may be unwittingly entertaining angels (Hebrews 13:2), and today I will live in the now!

 

Father, help me to make the right contacts today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

August 21, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Agape, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, forgiveness, Jim Earl Swilley, Kingdom of God, Love, No Fear, prayer, relationships | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

July 14: KINGDOM REVOLUTION!

upside down world

 
 
“I’ve come to change everything, turn everything rightside up
— how I long for it to be finished!”

(Luke 12:50 – The Message)

 

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because Jesus, the King, is reigning in and with and through me, changing me from the inside out – in my mind, in my heart, and in my faith – so that I can change the world around me, and make it a better place in which to live for future generations. I am changing my mind today – learning to think in a new way – so that I can enter the Kingdom, and bring necessary revolution through the revelation of repentance from my present reality into the realm of righteous rebirth! There is a new world coming, and Christ is already reigning from there.

2. Today I will disassociate myself from demonic strongholds that are resistant to authority and to change. I will do what I can to expose the death that is religion.

3. Today I will make room for the new thing that God is doing in my interior world. I will throw out the non-essential numbers that usually define me, including age, weight, and height, and will adopt a new way of seeing myself (then we shall know even as also we are known – I Corinthians 13:12). A new definition of my personhood is being written on my heart and in my imagination. The Kingdom within is causing changes without, and is creating within me a vision for real revolution!

4. Today I will preserve what is good in my world, and will change what needs improvement. If what needs to be changed is beyond my ability to improve it, I will get help, knowing that revolution requires a responsible team effort.

5. Today I will embrace the excitement and adventure of transition, even the frightening kind, knowing that life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away! The violent take the Kingdom by force, and today I will welcome the shaking of God in my life, not fearing the violence around me. In all these things I am more than a conqueror through Him Who loves me!

6. Today I will overcome the seduction of staying with the familiar and the temptation to let tradition go unchallenged and unchecked. I will outgrow my comfort zone today, and will move into the next chapter of the book of my life, knowing that the ending of the story will be a portrayal of my personal triumph!

7. Today I will run with the vision that is written on my heart by Jesus, the Revolutionary, and I will be changed for the better because of it. Today is the day for my miracle, and today I will live in the now!

 
Father, let Your Kingdom come, and revolutionize my life today! In Jesus’ name, amen.

July 14, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Bishop Jim Earl Swilley, Blogs by Jim Swilley, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, Jesus Reigns!, Jim Earl Swilley, Kingdom of God, Moving forward, No Fear, No Limits!, opportunity, Paradigm Shift, possibilities, purpose, self-confidence, self-esteem, self-image, vision | , , , , , , , , , | 2 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

February 8: BE SOMEBODY!

“In a word, what I’m saying is, Grow up. You’re Kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.”

(Matthew 5:48 – The Message)

 

1. Today I will live in the now! I will live in the now because I am fearfully and wonderfully made – I am His workmanship – I am the righteousness of God in Christ – I am the head and not the tail, above only, and not beneath – I am bought with a price – I am somebody!

2. Today I will refuse to believe anything about myself that is contrary to what God believes about me. I will not regard any word spoken about me that does not confirm what God says about me. I will agree with God and His will for my life, even if it seems illogical and impractical to do so.

3. Today I will carry myself in a way that demonstrates my godly self-confidence. I will speak well of myself without bragging or being offensive to others. I will show that I believe in myself, without thinking more highly of myself than I ought to think. I will love my neighbor as I love myself today.

4. Today I will not waste my time on unimportant and trivial things – the “beggarly elements of the world.” I will forsake the temptation to give in to silly pettiness, and will pursue great ideas and noble thoughts. I will conduct my affairs with a flair for grandeur and loftiness, without becoming pretentious and out of touch with reality. Today I will feel neither superior nor inferior to anyone else.

5. Today I will remember that I am who God says that I am – I have what God says that I have – and I can do what God says that I can do!

6. Today I will walk like a winner, and lose my loser mentality. I am a champion – a king – an overcomer. I have favor, creativity, confidence, the Mind of Christ, prosperity, success, supernatural ability, and uncommon favor. Anything can happen today, and my expectation of faith will attract the positive to my life. If God is for me, who can be against me?! No matter what others have said to me or about me – no matter what I have said about myself – today is a new day of self-realization for me.

7. Today I am somebody, and today I will live in the now!

Father, help me to remember today that You have enabled me to be somebody! In Jesus’ name, amen.

February 8, 2009 Posted by | A YEAR IN THE NOW, Books by Bishop Jim Swilley, Devotional, self-confidence, self-esteem, self-image | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment