Ashes to Fire (Year B) – Pentecost Sunday

Thank you for joining us on this spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to today, Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!  If you have benefited from this journey, we would love to hear from you.  Feel free to post in the comments below!  Feel free to explore the resources on our site, and continue to grow spiritually every day!

Our Scripture readings for Pentecost Sunday can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Who is the Advocate of whom Jesus spoke?  About what were Jesus’ disciples to witness?  What is the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives?  …in our world?  (see John 15:26-27; 16:4-15)IMG_6348
  2. Why was there wind and fire on the Day of Pentecost?  How many different native languages were represented in the audience on the Day of Pentecost?  How did they each hear the apostles speaking their own language?  About what did they speak?  Have you asked God to pour out His Spirit on you?  (see Acts 2:1-21)
  3. What works of the Lord create wonder in you?  How has the Lord provided for you?  Are your meditations pleasing to God?  (see Psalm 104:24-34)
  4. In what way(s) do you see the need for the redemption of our bodies?   For what do you hope?  How does the Holy Spirit help you in your weakness?  What does it mean to you to hear that the Holy Spirit prays for you?  (see Romans 8:22-27)
  5. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Monday – Easter Wk7

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Monday of Week 7 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. About what do you sing?  Have you told anyone about how God has been faithful to you?  What would you say?  (see Psalm 89:1-2)
  2. What do you think about day and night?  What if you thought about what God has said to us?  Are you encouraged to hear that God is with you wherever you go?  (see Joshua 1:8-9)
  3. To whom does God want you to share the boundless riches of Christ?  How is the church to show the wisdom of God?
    Cropped image from https://www.flickr.com/photos/26760446@N04/3421130982/in/photostream/
    “The centurion replied, ‘Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed.'” – Matthew 8:8

    How can we have access to God?  (see Ephesians 3:8, 10-12)

  4. Why did the centurion believe Jesus could heal his servant without actually going to visit him?  How has Jesus brought healing to your body or spirit?  (see Matthew 8:5-17)
  5. What is significant about the fact that the Lord’s love is steadfast?  What difference does it make to you that the Lord’s love is steadfast?   (see Psalm 89:19, 24, 28)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Sunday – Easter Wk6

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Sunday of Week 6 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Do you keep Jesus commands?  What does Jesus promise if you do?  What is Jesus’ example of the greatest love?  How can you demonstrate your friendship with Jesus?  Are you bearing lasting fruit?  (see John 15:9-17)
  2. Why were the Jewish believers astonished that the Holy Spirit had been given to the Gentiles?  Has the Holy Spirit been poured out on you?  (see Acts 10:44-48)
  3. If you wrote a new song to praise God, what is a general idea of what it would say?  Have you witnessed God’s victory in your life?  If so, how?  Do you make a joyful noise to the Lord?
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/25356245@N04/5107029349/
    “let the hills sing together for joy
    at the presence of the Lord” – Psalm 98:8-9

    How does the world around you offer praise to God?  (see Psalm 98)

  4. Is John saying that if you love God, you will love His family, the church?  Why or why not?  (Expanded Study question:  What is Jesus’ attitude toward the church?)  Who will win the victory, God’s children or the world?  How do you know?  (see 1 John 5:1-6)
  5. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Sunday – Easter Wk5

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Sunday of Week 5 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. How is the Lord pruning you?  Have you chosen to abide in Jesus?  What does that mean?  Are you bearing fruit for Jesus?  https://www.flickr.com/photos/jeanetteb1/3459522414/in/photostream/What happens to those who choose not to abide in Jesus?  Are you bringing glory to the Father?  (see John 15:1-8)
  2. How did Philip know to go talk to the Ethiopian?  Why does Philip tell him about Jesus?  Have you told anyone about Jesus?  Are you willing to be led by the Spirit to reach those who need to hear about Jesus?  (see Acts 8:26-40)
  3. Do you share your praise for God with a congregation of others?  Are you fulfilling any promises you have made to God?  Have you chosen to live for God?  What role will you have in telling the next generation about how God has brought deliverance?  (see Psalm 22:25-31)
  4. Why should we love one another?  How do we see God’s love revealed?  How do we know that God is living in us?  Why are love and fear mutually exclusive?  Why is it impossible to love God and hate one’s brothers or sisters at the same time? (see 1 John 4:7-21)
  5. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Monday – Easter Wk4

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Monday of Week 4 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. For what do you give God thanks?  Are you able to talk about God’s goodness with other believers?  Are you able to talk to unbelievers about how good God has been to you?  (see Psalm 52:8-9)
  2. What does it mean to keep the Lord’s sabbaths?  Is it possible for the Lord to sanctify you?  (see Exodus 31:12-13)
  3. Do you always speak graciously?  How might you make the most of your time in dealing with “outsiders?”  Do you know how to answer the questions they ask?  (see Colossians 4:5-6)
  4. Why are the poor and those mourning blessed?
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/8767316@N08/4323259356/
    “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” – Jesus in Matthew 5:8

    What does it mean to be meek?  For what do you hunger and thirst?  When has someone shown you mercy?  Is your heart been made pure?  Do you want it to be?  Are you a peacemaker?  Why are those persecuted for righteousness’ sake blessed?  (see Matthew 5:1-10)

  5. What stories have you been told of what God has done in former days?  What stories will you tell of what God has done in your day?  (see Psalm 44:1, 4-5)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Friday – Easter Wk3

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Friday of Week 3 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. How could you offer thanks to the Lord?  How could you make known the Lord’s deeds among the people?  What song of praise could you sing to the Lord?  Does your heart rejoice?  (see Psalm 105:1-3)
  2. Do you listen to the reading of Scripture?  Have you made a commitment to be obedient to all that the Lord has spoken?  (see Exodus 24:7)
  3. Do you want to be made alive?  Do you want God to forgive you all your trespasses?  How did Jesus set aside the record against us?  (see Colossians 2:13-15)
  4. Why did Jesus withdraw when He heard about John’s arrest?  Why did Jesus settle in Capernaum?
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/12836528@N00/4681534365/
    “The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light” – Matthew 4:16

    How did Jesus fulfill the promise to bring a great light to those sitting in darkness?  Is the kingdom of heaven near?  Have you repented?  (see Matthew 4:12-17)

  5. How has God brought you out?  Was joy part of the experience?  What song comes to your mind & heart as you think about it?  The Lord keeps His promises to us; do we keep his word?  (see Psalm 105:42-43, 45)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Monday – Easter Wk3

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Monday of Week 3 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Why did David lift up his soul to the Lord?  Do you trust in God?  What requests do you have of the Lord?  Are you willing to have the Lord teach you His paths?
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/57038667@N00/1021782142/
    “Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation” – David in Psalm 25:4-5

    Do you want to know His truth?  What did David mean by saying, “for you I wait all day long”?  (see Psalm 25:1-2, 4-5)

  2. To whom have you shared the story of how God has led you, helped you and delivered you?  How do you know that the Lord is greater than all other objects of worship?  (see Exodus 18:8, 10-11)
  3. How do you handle anxiety?  What does it mean to you to know that God cares for you?  How does the promise of restoration, support, strength and establishment affect you when you are going through suffering?  (see 1 Peter 5:7, 10-11)
  4. What does it mean to repent?  Are you a citizen of the kingdom of heaven?  Is your life ready for the arrival of the Lord?  Have you confessed your sins?  Are you willing to share the Good News of forgiveness with others?  (see Matthew 3:1-6)
  5. Is the Lord your stronghold?  Do you put your trust in Him?  Are you seeking Him? (see Psalm 9:9-10)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

 

Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Sunday – Easter Wk2

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Sunday of Week 2 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Why did the resurrected Jesus say, “Peace be with you,” twice to His assembled disciples?  Why did He show them His hands and His side?
    "...he showed them his hands" - John 20:20
    “…he showed them his hands” – John 20:20

    What does it mean for Jesus to send His disciples as His Father had sent Him?  What does that mean for you?  How are you and Thomas alike?  How are you different?  Do you believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God?  (see John 20:19-31)

  2. What was the basis of the unity the early Christians enjoyed?  Why did their testimony about Jesus have great power?  How did the early church care for the needs of its members?  (see Acts 4:32-35)
  3. Is it possible for a family to “live together in unity”?  If so, how?  How is family unity like the anointing oil at the ordination of Aaron?  (see Psalm 133)
  4. How important is the testimony of an eyewitness, of multiple eyewitnesses?  What is your response to the witness of the disciples?  What are the implications of saying that “God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all”?  Have you confessed your sins to God?  What has He promised to do in response?  Do you believe John’s implication in 2:1 that it is possible NOT to sin?  Have you asked Christ’s atonement to be applied to your sins?  (see 1 John 1:1-2:2)
  5. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Saturday – Easter Wk1

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Saturday of Week 1 of the Easter season can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Do you bless the Lord?  What do you tell others about the glory of His kingdom and of His power?  What is implied by the Psalmist’s words to the Lord, “Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom”?  (see Psalm 145:10-11, 13)
  2. How has the Lord led you along the way?  How has the Lord given you light in darkness?  Are you willing to let the Lord receive glory through your life?  How does your life show others that God is the Lord?  (see Exodus 13:21; 14:1, 4)
  3. Paul endured many challenges and lots of suffering.  How did he not lose heart?  Do you want your inner nature to be “renewed day by day”?  How was Paul able to describe his affliction as “slight?”  (see 2 Corinthians 4:16-17)

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/35409814@N00/8524135800/
    “…have you not read in the book of Moses, in the story about the bush, how God said to him, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’?” – Jesus in Mark 12:26b
  4. What assumptions did the Sadducees have that resulted in their misunderstanding of life in the hereafter?  What is implied by Jesus’ words that “He is God not of the dead, but of the living”?  How did God’s words to Moses at the burning bush help the Sadducees reach a better understanding?  (see Mark 12:18-27)
  5. Why should the Lord’s glory be eternal?  Is it appropriate for the Lord to rejoice in His works?  Are you the work of His hands? Do you sing to the Lord?  If so, why?  If not, why not? (see Psalm 104:31, 33)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) – Easter Sunday

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Easter Sunday can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Why was it so hard for the disciples to believe that Jesus had been resurrected? 20130330-184520.jpg How would you have responded if you had been there?  Why didn’t Mary Magdalene recognize Jesus?  Is it possible that we have missed seeing Jesus show up in unexpected times and places?  (see John 20:1-18)
  2. Have you received forgiveness of your sins through believing in Jesus?  How important is it to you to know that there were eyewitnesses to the resurrection of Jesus?  (see Acts 10:34-43)
  3. How do you know that God’s “steadfast love endures forever”?  Why is it appropriate to “sing glad songs of victory” today?  Why does the Psalmist say that “the stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone”?  Why did the Lord make this day?  (see Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24)
  4. What message is of “first importance” to Paul?  What difference does it make that Jesus appeared after His resurrection to more than 500 people at once?  Why did Paul work hard to proclaim this message?  (see 1 Corinthians 15:1-11)
  5. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) -Saturday – Lent Wk5

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Saturday of Week 5 of Lent can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Do you need the Lord to enter into your world to set you free and rescue you?  Has He already done that once?  What is your response to Him for His saving act?  (see Psalm 144:5, 7-8)
  2. Why did the Lord set a limit on the plagues He brought upon Egypt?  At first, Pharaoh hardened his own heart.  In the end, God hardened Pharaoh’s heart.  Why?  (see Exodus 11:1, 4-5, 10)
  3. Why does Paul seem to say that believing in Jesus leads to speaking about Him?  Is that true for you?  Why or why not?  (see 2 Corinthians 4:13-14)
  4. Why did blind Bartimaeus disobey those who ordered him to be quiet?
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/8767316@N08/14764475430/
    “When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’” – Mark 10:47

    What would you have done?  What was the result of Bartimaeus’ actions?  (see Mark 10:46-52)

  5. How do you encourage yourself when you are “down?”  What did the Psalmist do when he felt cast down or disquieted?  (see Psalm 43:5)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) –Friday – Lent Wk4

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Friday of Week 4 of Lent can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. What do you want your children and grandchildren to know about what the Lord has done in your life?  How will they find out?  (see Psalm 102:18-21)
  2. Had God forgotten about the covenant, the promises He had made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob?  Why did God act at that time?  (compare Genesis 15:13-14 and Exodus 2:23-25)
  3. Why does God give certain people assignments in the church?  Is there a part for you to fill?  What are the most helpful gifts?  (see 1 Corinthians 12:28, 31)
  4. https://www.flickr.com/photos/74875296@N00/3162518717/
    “As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed” – Mark 9:2b

    Why was Jesus’ appearance transformed?  What would have been your reaction to seeing Jesus transformed along with Elijah and Moses?  Why didn’t Jesus want His disciples to talk about this incident until after His resurrection?  What did Jesus mean when He said, “Elijah has already come”?  (see Mark 9:2-13)

  5. Have you asked the Lord for help?  How has the Lord saved you?  What chains has the Lord snapped in your life?  (see Psalm 107:10, 13-14)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) – Tuesday – Lent Wk3

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Tuesday of Week 3 of Lent can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Are you making it a priority to tune in to the Lord’s teaching?  How?  How will you tell the coming generation the “glorious deeds of the Lord, His might, and the wonders He has done?”  (see Psalm 78:1,4)
  2. Why couldn’t Joseph contain himself anymore?  What would have been your reaction to Joseph’s revelation of his true identity if you had been one of Joseph’s brothers?  (see Genesis 45:1-3)
  3. What is our responsibility to other believers?  If we know that something we feel free to do as a Christian will cause another believer to stumble in his/her faith, are we still free to do that action?  Why was Paul willing to forgo eating meat (that had been sacrificed to idols) for the rest of his life?  (see 1 Corinthians 8:12-13 & context)
  4. Why did the people of Jesus’ hometown, Nazareth, not accept Him?  Why did He not perform many miracles there?  Why did Jesus send out the twelve?  What was their message?  What did they do?  Has Jesus sent you out also?  How are doing on His mission? https://www.flickr.com/photos/67652247@N00/364999056/ (see Mark 6:1-13)
  5. Why do you think God chose David to be the “shepherd of His people?”  Do you have an “upright heart?”  Are you fulfilling God’s purpose for you?  (see Psalm 78:67, 70-72)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (Year B) – Wednesday – Lent Wk2

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times! You can reap the most benefit from this journey by joining a small group and by inviting others to join us!

Our Scripture readings for Wednesday of Week 2 of Lent can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

Questions for Meditation

  1. Have you blessed the Lord for doing wondrous things?  Could you tell someone today something God has done for you?  (see Psalm 72:18-19)
  2. Why did Joseph’s brothers believe they were suffering anguish?  Were they right?  What consequences of sin have you had to endure?  (see Genesis 42:21)
  3. What is the significance of Paul’s phrase “used to be” in 1 Corinthians 6:9, 11?  What does it mean to be justified?  What does it mean to be sanctified?  (see 1Corinthians 6:9, 11)
  4. What type of soil are you most like in the parable Jesus told?  What type of soil do you want to be?
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/cimmyt/8207318991/in/photostream/
    “Other seed fell into good soil and brought forth grain” – Mark 4:8

    Is it possible to change your receptivity to the “seed” that Jesus sows?  (see Mark 4:1-20)

  5. What meaning does it have for your life to know that the Lord “exists forever?”  How does it help you to know that God’s word “stands firmly fixed in heaven?”  (see Psalm 119:89-90)
  6. What does God want you to do today to incorporate into your life what He is teaching you?

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Ashes to Fire (A) – Pentecost Sunday

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship today! Click here to discover our location & service times!

Our Scripture readings for Pentecost Sunday can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

How has Jesus satisfied your spiritual thirst? Have you received the Spirit of Jesus within? (See John 7:37-39)

What does it say about Jesus that He appeared unexpectedly in a locked room? How did the disciples know that He really was Jesus? Why does Jesus want His disciples to receive the Holy Spirit? (See John 20:19-23)

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Why did the Spirit-filled disciples begin to speak in the languages of the homelands of the visitors in Jerusalem for the Festival of Pentecost? What is the heart of Peter’s message on the Day of Pentecost? (See Acts 2:1-21)

Why do you think that the Spirit that was on Moses was shared with other leaders in Israel? Why did Moses want the Lord to put His Spirit on all His people? Are you willing to receive His Spirit? (see Numbers 11:24-30)

How does the incredible diversity of life in the sea display the Lord’s wisdom? How does the Lord provide food for them all? How does the Lord provide for you?  What role does God’s Spirit play in creation, according to the Psalmist? About what would you sing to the Lord? (See Psalm 104:24-35)

What is revealed about the relationship between Jesus and the Holy Spirit according to Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 12:3? Why is there apparently so much variety & diversity in the work of the Holy Spirit in people? What is the significance of Paul saying that Jews and Greeks, slaves and free, are all one in Christ through His Spirit? (See 1 Corinthians 12:3-13)

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US ON THIS JOURNEY FROM “ASHES TO FIRE!”  LET US KNOW IF YOU WERE BLESSED BY THESE RESOURCES!

Feel free to review these “Ashes to Fire” (Year A) posts.  The first in this Spring’s series is located here.  For print resources, visit http://ashestofire.com/

Ashes to Fire (A) – Monday Easter-Week 5

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times!

Our Scripture readings for Monday of the Easter Season, Week 5, can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

What vows have you made to God?  For what do you owe Him thanks?  How has He delivered your soul from death or your feet from falling?  Are you walking before God in the light of life?  (see Psalm 56:12-13)

“Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.” – Isaiah 60:1

How has God brought light into your life?  How have you seen God’s glory?  Why does God want to “make you majestic forever, a joy from age to age”?  (see Isaiah 60:1, 15-16)

Are you living “wisely toward outsiders”?  What does that mean?  Are you “making the most of the time”?  What step could you take to improve your stewardship of time (to keep it from going to waste)?  Is your speech always gracious?  How could you improve in knowing how “to answer everyone”?  (see Colossians 3:4-5)

Why do you think the Pharisee invited Jesus to dinner?  Why did the woman anoint Jesus’ feet?  Why did the Pharisee think what the woman did was inappropriate?  Why did Jesus’ dinner companions remark about His forgiving the woman’s sins?  If Jesus can forgive sins, what does that say about who He is?  (see Luke 7:36-50)

Have deeds of iniquity ever overwhelmed you?  What did you do?  What does David say God does?  Where do we find hope?  To whom is this hope offered?  (see Psalm 65:3, 5)

Ashes to Fire (A) – Friday Easter-Week 3

Thank you for joining us on a spiritual journey from “Ashes to Fire,” from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday. We would also love to have you join us for worship this week! Click here to discover our location & service times!

Our Scripture readings for Friday of the Easter Season, Week 3, can be read here. Please take some time to read these passages and then meditate on the following questions. Then talk to God about what the Bible is teaching you.

“Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually.” – Psalm 105:4

How can we “seek the Lord & His strength”?  Do you seek His presence continually?  What wonderful works had He done in your life?  With whom could you share the stories?  (see Psalm 105:4-5, 7)

Why did Daniel continue to pray even when it was outlawed?  How has God delivered you? (see Daniel 6:13, 16)

What does it mean to abide in the teaching of Christ?  Why does the Father offer His presence to those who abide in the teaching of His Son?  (see 2 John 9)

Why would Jesus withdraw to deserted places?  Why did Jesus take time to pray?  Why did Jesus first offer forgiveness of sins to a man who obviously needed physical healing?  Have you received forgiveness for your sins?  Why was that important to Jesus?  (see Luke 5:12-26)

Do you remember God’s holy promise(s) to you?  How has the Lord brought you out?  What do the phrases “with joy” and “with singing” imply to you about the Lord’s deliverance for His people?  What does the Lord’s deliverance allow His people to do?  (see Psalm 105:42-43, 45)

Meditation Questions for #AshesToFire – Pentecost Sunday

Please join us at church today to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ! For directions see our home page.

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (Click here to read today’s Bible passages).

Read John 14:8-17, 25-27.  When have you seen the Father at work in your life?  How do we know what God the Father is like?  Are you doing the works of Jesus?  What does it mean to ask in Jesus’ name?

Pentecost_HolySpirit Desends-2Read Acts 2:1-21.  How many different languages did the crowd hear the disciples speaking?  Why do you think God wanted the diverse crowd gathered for the Jewish feast of Pentecost to hear the good news in their native languages?

Meditate on Psalm 104:24-34.  What have you seen in nature recently that has displayed the Lord’s wisdom and greatness?  When have you seen God supply what is needed for His creatures?  What is your response to the Lord’s greatness?

Read Romans 8:14-17.  Are you being led by the Spirit of God?  Are you a slave to fear?  What does it mean to you be be adopted by God the Father?  Have you sensed God’s Spirit confirming to you that you are a child of God?  Why are glory and suffering connected?

Thank you for joining us on the journey from “Ashes to Fire” this Spring (from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost Sunday).  We’d love for you to leave a comment below or send us an e-mail at office@jaxnaz.org if this devotional resource was a help or blessing to you.  We hope that you have established a habit of and hunger for reading God’s Word on a daily basis.  Don’t give up the journey!  See you at Faith Church!

Photo:  Beacon Hill Press

Meditation Questions for #AshesToFire – Easter Wk7 Saturday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (Click here to read today’s Bible passages).

Read Psalm 11:4, 7. Does the fact that the Lord’s “gaze examines humankind” make you affirmed or frightened? Why?

Sunrise Kaho'olawe Hawaii
“For you who revere my name the sun of righteousness shall rise, with healing in its wings.” – Malachi 4:2

Read Malachi 4:2, 5. How does a calf act when released from its stall? What does that picture say to you about the joy God is promising?  How has the “sun of righteousness” brought healing to you?

Read Acts 28:30-31. What would you do if you were placed on house arrest? What does Paul do in that circumstance?

Read John 21:20-25. Do you compare yourself to others? What do Jesus’ words challenge us to do when we are tempted to focus on God’s plan for others? Consider reading one chapter of the Gospel of John each day next week and look in each chapter to see if you can find one or both of the purposes (listed in today’s passage) John says are behind his writing of the Gospel.

Meditate on Psalm 33:1, 21-22. What is a practical application-action which you could build into your life from the Psalmist’s words, “Praise befits the upright”? How does someone who hopes in the Lord live and think?

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Meditation Questions for #AshesToFire – Easter Wk7 Thursday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (Click here to read today’s Bible passages).

Footsteps
“You show me the path of life.” – Psalm 16:11

Read Psalm 16:9-11.  Are you confident that you are following the “path of life?”  Are you living in God’s presence?

Read Malachi 3:10.  Have you experienced the blessings that result when you are obedient to God’s call to “bring the full tithe into the storehouse?”

Read Acts 23:11.  How has God encouraged you?  What mission does God have in store for you?

Read John 17:20-26.  Who has believed in Jesus through your testimony?  Are you living in unity with other believers?  Have you asked God to let His love live in you?

Read Psalm 105:1, 3-4.  Do you call on the name of the Lord?  Do you tell people what the Lord has done for you?  Does your heart seek the Lord continually?

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Meditation Questions for #AshesToFire – Easter Wk6 Friday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (Click here to read today’s Bible passages.).

Read Psalm 96:1, 8-9. If you were to sing to the Lord a new song, what would you sing about? What offering could you bring to the Lord? What does it mean to “Worship the Lord in holy splendor?”

Read Zechariah 14:9-11. If “the Lord will become king over all the earth” how should we respond to Him today? What does the promise of Jerusalem’s security mean for you?

Read Acts 18:9-10. Why was Paul told to be not afraid and not to be silent? About what was Paul to speak?

Read John 16:20-23. What do we learn about both pain and joy from Jesus’ words? What does Jesus mean when He uses the illustration contrasting a woman’s labor pains with her joy at childbirth?

Read Psalm 85:7-8. In what ways have you seen the Lord’s steadfast love in your life? Have you asked Him to save you? Are you listening to what the Lord is saying to you? Have you turned to Him in your heart?

Geborgenheit
But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk6 Tuesday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Why does the Psalmist give thanks to the Lord in Psalm 138:2-3?  For what do you give thanks to the Lord?  Have you called to the Lord today?

Have you ever been wounded by friends?  How did Jesus respond when betrayed by friends?  Read Zechariah 13:6.

St Paul Baptizing
“Believe on the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” – Acts 16:31

Would you know how to help someone be saved from their sins and from an eternity in hell?  How did Paul & Silas guide the jailer to salvation?  Read Acts 16:29-31.

Why did Jesus say it was better for the disciples for Him to go away?  Why did the disciples feel it was better for Him to stay with them?  What is the truth about sin, righteousness and judgment that the Holy Spirit is trying to convey to the world?  Meditate on John 16:5-11.

What glorious deeds of the Lord do you need to share with the next generation?  What stories of God’s work in your life need to be remembered?  Think about the implications of Psalm 78:4, 7.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk6 Sunday

Please join us at church today to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ! For directions see our home page.

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Are you willing to let God make His home with you?  How do you know if you truly love God?  Are you experiencing God’s peace in the midst of a troubled world?  Read John 14:23-29.

Easter6_PeaceDoes our city need a “place of prayer?”  Does it have one?  Do you know anyone who is seeking God?  What could you do to help that person find Him?  Read Acts 16:9-15.

How could God bless us so that His saving power might be made known among the nations?  How could we be part of helping “all the ends of the earth [to] revere him?”  Meditate on Psalm 67.

What will be the place of the nations in the New Heavenly Jerusalem?  In what way does God’s heart for the nations show up in His Holy City?  What description of this city is most meaningful to you?  Read Revelation 21:10, 22-27; 22:1-5.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

Photo:  Beacon Hill Press

 

Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk5 Friday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

"You have been a fortress for me and a refuge in the day of my distress"
“You have been a fortress for me and a refuge in the day of my distress” – Psalm 59:16

David refers to God’s “steadfast love” three times in Psalm 59:9-10, 16-17.  Why might God’s steadfast love be important to David?  Why might God’s steadfast love be important to you? How has God been a fortress for you and a refuge in the day of your distress?

What might cause someone to annul a covenant?  In what ways did God’s people reject Him?  Read Zechariah 11:7, 10, 14.

Have you ever sent someone to encourage believers and to proclaim the Word (If you are part of our church you have!)?  Whom have you encouraged recently?  When have you shared God’s Word with someone?  Read Acts 15:32, 34-35.

How did Jesus show you the greatest kind of love?  What does it mean to be a friend of Jesus, not just a servant?  How do you respond to the revelation that Jesus has chosen you?  Are you willing to produce lasting fruit?  Meditate on John 15:18-21.

Why do you want the Lord to remember you today?  For what are you seeking the Lord’s help?  Read Psalm 106:4-5.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk5 Thursday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

What words does the Psalmist use to describe the Lord?  What words would you use?  What is the response that the Psalmist calls us to make to the Lord?  Meditate on Psalm 96:6-7, 9.

Word "cloud" based on today's Bible readingsWhat does it mean to be redeemed?  What does it mean to be brought home?  Are you “strong in the Lord?”  Do you “walk in his name?”  Think about the meaning of Zechariah 10:8, 10, 12.

The prophet Amos envisioned the Lord calling His people and the Gentiles to seek Him.  Why was it so hard for the Jewish leaders and even some Church leaders of the 1st Century to be open to God’s global mission?  Read Acts 15:13, 15-17 and consider how you are partnering with God’s global mission today.

How can we abide in Jesus’ love? How can we live with Jesus’ complete joy within?  Meditate on the meaning of Jesus’ words in John 15:9-11.

How has God taught you?  When was the last time you told someone something wonderful that God did for you?  Consider singing a song of joy & praise to God today as you read Psalm 71:17, 21-24.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk4 Saturday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

singing natureIf you were to write a song to sing to the Lord, what would it be about?  What “marvelous things” has God done for you?  How do you “make a joyful noise to the Lord?”  Read Isaiah 98:1, 4.

Have you experienced the Lord guarding you?  If so, in what way?  Has the Lord protected you from an oppressor?  How?  Think about the words of Zechariah 9:6b, 8.

Are you willing to be used by God to be a light to someone whom others might consider an outcast?  What part could you play in bringing “salvation to the ends of the earth?”  Read Acts 13:47-48.

Do you have an accurate understanding of God the Father?  Does He look just like Jesus?  What is the family resemblance that Jesus describes in John 14:7-14?  For what are you asking Jesus today?

What burden are you carrying today?  Are you willing to “cast your burden on the Lord?”  Meditate on the words of Psalm 55:22.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk4 Thursday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below.)

Why should we declare the Lord’s faithfulness to our generation? …or to the last generation?  …or to the next generation?  What does the Psalmist mean by saying that the Lord’s “steadfast love is established forever?”  Meditate on Psalm 89:1-2.

Thank you to W.J. Bill Harrison
“There shall be a sowing of peace; the vine shall yield its fruit…” – Zechariah 8:12

What does the phrase “a sowing of peace” mean?  Why does God want our “hands [to] be strong?”  Read Zechariah 8:12-13.

What qualities do you think it would take to be a person “after [God’s] heart?”  Are you a person who will carry out all God’s wishes?  What difference would it make to your descendants if you were?  Consider the example of David, who was not perfect, but who, because of his repentant spirit, was forgiven.  Read Acts 13:22-23.

Is it a Judas-betrayal to act as if we are better than our Master, or as if we know better than He does?  What are the implications of accepting Jesus’ messengers?  Meditate on the words of Jesus in John 13:16-20.

If I asked you for a reason to praise the Lord, what reason would you give?  Why do you think the Psalmist says the name of the Lord is to be praised from dawn to dusk?  Read Psalm 113:1-3.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk4 Tuesday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Why did the Psalmist say that God loved the “gates of Zion?”  Why is Jerusalem called the “city of God?”  What does this say about God’s love for humanity and His desire to have a relationship with us?  Read Psalm 87:1-2.

Why is fairness in your decisions important?  Why do you want to be treated with kindness and mercy?  Are you oppressing widows, orphans, aliens, the poor or anyone?  Are you planning evil toward anyone?  If so, what changes do you need to make?  Consider the implications of Zechariah 7:9-10.

Where do you see the grace of God around you?  Whom are you exhorting to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast devotion?  Are you full of the Holy Spirit and faith?  Who is one person you could bring to the Lord?  (Start first by bringing them to the Lord in prayer!)  Read Acts 11:23-24.

Why does the good shepherd lay down his life for his sheep?  Why does the hired hand run away when threatened?  Are you listening to the Good Shepherd’s voice?  Meditate on the words of John 10:11-18.

the journey home
“Your name, O God, like your praise, reaches to the ends of the earth.” – Psalm 48:10

What has God’s steadfast love meant to you?  How could you help God’s name reach the ends of the earth?  How do you respond to knowing that God’s right hand is filled with victory?  How will you praise God today?  Ponder the words of Psalm 48:9-10, and 48:1.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk4 Monday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Evening Drink
“As the deer longs for flowing streams, so my soul longs for you, O God.” – Psalm 42:1

Do you thirst for God at least as much as you thirst for water?  Do you pray as often as you drink?  How strong is your hope in God?  Read Psalm 42:1-2, 5-6.

Have you ever helped “build the temple of the Lord?”  Have you ever been part of a Work & Witness trip to help bu

ild a church?  If so, you may have helped fulfill this Scripture!  Are you building your life as a spiritual temple for the Lord?  What could you do today to make your life a holy temple in which the Lord can live?  Pray about Zechariah 6:15.

Have you asked the Holy Spirit to baptize you, to fill you, to cleanse you, to empower you?  If not, why not now?  Read Acts 11:15-16 and ask the Lord to fulfill this promise in your life!

Are you able to recognize the Lord’s “voice?”  Are you following Him as your shepherd?  Are you living the “life to the full” that Jesus offers?  If not, why not?  Meditate today on John 10:1-10.

Are you living with integrity?  How has the Lord been gracious to you and raised you up?  What praise can you offer to God today?  Read Psalm 41:10, 12-13.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk4 Sunday

Please join us at church today to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ! For directions see our home page.

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Do you believe that Jesus is the Messiah? Is it possible to tell if Jesus is the Messiah by what He did? Are you listening for Jesus’ voice? Read John 10:22-30.

Why do bad things happen to good people? Why aren’t all good people raised from the dead when we choose? Why aren’t all good people kept from dying? What was the result of Tabitha’s being raised from the dead? Consider the implications of Acts 9:36-43.

Shepherd
“The Lord is my shepherd” – Psalm 23:1

How has the Lord guided you? How has the Lord provided for you? What “valleys” has the Lord brought you through? When have you seen God’s goodness and love pursuing you? Meditate on the words of Psalm 23.

What must God be like to evoke the amount and level of praise expressed in Revelation 7:9-17? Have you ever been through tribulation? If not, how do you think you would respond if you did face tribulation? How does God respond to those who have endured tribulation?

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Saturday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

What can you give to the Lord in light of all that He has done for you?  Have you fulfilled any vows you have made to Him?  Read Psalm 116:12-14.

The Vision of the New Heaven and the New Earth...
“…the former things shall not be remembered…” Isaiah 65:17.

What would you most like to see in the new heavens and new earth that the Lord has promised us?  What former things do you want to forget?  What would He have to create for you to “rejoice forever” in it?  Meditate on Isaiah 65:17-18.

What would it look like for you to speak boldly in the name of the Lord?  Would you have to live “in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of he Holy Spirit” in order to speak boldly for Jesus?  Think about the implications of Paul’s ministry for your life and church as you read Acts 9:28, 31.

Why did Peter continue to follow Jesus when others quit following Jesus?  Who does Peter say Jesus is?  What are the implications of this?  What demands do Peter’s words make on our lives?  Read John 6:60-69 and consider what it means for Jesus to be the Holy One of God.

Has God sent out His light and truth since the Psalmist prayed his prayer?  Are you letting God’s light and truth lead you?  Is God your “exceeding joy?”  What does that mean?  Meditate on Psalm 43:3-4.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Friday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Why should nations & peoples praise the Lord?  How have you seen the Lord’s steadfast love and faithfulness in your life?  Worship the Lord as you read Psalm 117.

Have you ever tried to count all the things that the Lord has done for you?  Have you ever told your family members the things that the Lord has done for you?  Consider writing down some of the significant ways the Lord has blessed you.  Read Isaiah 63:7.

How do you explain Saul/Paul’s rapid transformation:  from persecuting the followers of Jesus to proclaiming Jesus as the Son of God?  Have you seen a change in the direction of your life?  Think about the implications of Acts 9:19-20.

“Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me, and I in them.” Jesus in John 6:56

What does Jesus mean by telling his listeners to “eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood?”  Was Jesus advocating cannibalism?  If not, what did He mean?  Is there any connection with His later institution of the Last Supper?  What does it mean to have Jesus live within us?  Meditate on John 6:52-59.

How has God fulfilled His promises to you?  List at least 3 that come to mind that have brought you joy.  Consider offering God praise today through a song or make up your own music to sing Psalm 105:42-43, 45.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Thursday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

What prayer has God answered for you recently?  Whom have you told about what God did?  Read what God did for the Psalmist in Psalm 66:16, 19-20.

How can we have our whole being “exult” in our God?  (To “exult” can mean “to show or feel a lively or triumphant joy; rejoice exceedingly; be highly elated or jubilant.”)  Does meditating on God’s salvation for you make you want to exult?  Read Isaiah 61:10.

Philip catechizes the Ethiopian Eunuch
“Philip began to speak and…proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus.” Acts 8:35

Do you know someone who has questions about God, faith or the Bible?  Are you willing to come alongside them to search for answers?  Read how God used Philip in Acts 8:29-31, 35.

How has God drawn you to Jesus?  How has God taught you?  Do you believe that Jesus is the bread of life?  Meditate on the words of Jesus in John 6:44-51.

The Psalmist David says we are to “depart from evil.”  What practical steps does that call for in your life?  David says we are to “do good.”  What action does that prompt for you today?  Meditate on David’s words in Psalm 37:27-28, 34.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Wednesday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

How do you usually express praise to God?  Think about the ways the Psalmist expressed his praise in Psalm 66:1-5.

Eclipse
“The sun shall no longer be your light by day…but the Lord will be your everlasting light.” – Isaiah 60:19

What does it mean to you to know that the Lord outshines the sun and moon, that He “will be your everlasting light?”  What might this mean to you on dark days when it seems that all other lights have been extinguished?  Meditate on the words of Isaiah 60:19.

Why did Philip go to Samaria, to those considered by the Jews to be outcasts?  Whom do you know who needs to hear about Jesus?  Would you consider going to tell them?  Read what Philip did in Acts 8:5-6.

Do you want to be raised up on the last day?  Find out how that is possible by reading what Jesus says in John 6:35-40.  What does it mean to receive Jesus, the bread of life?

How does keeping the law of the Lord result in liberty?  What does the Psalmist mean in Psalm 119:41, 44-45, 48?  Meditate on God’s steadfast love and salvation, and on His law, precepts and commandments as you read this passage.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Tuesday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

From what do you need rescued?  What is your request to the Lord?  Read the Psalmist’s requests in Psalm 31:1-2.

What steps could you take to maintain a “contrite and humble” spirit?  What is God’s response to those who live that way?  What are the implications of the fact that God inhabits eternity?  Meditate on Isaiah 57:15, 19.

Beam this up - Stradbroke Island (Straddie)
“Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the clouds.” – Psalm 36:5

What is the significance of the fact that Stephen, as he is being opposed and heckled by those who heard his message, sees into heaven, sees the glory of God and sees Jesus standing at the right hand of God?  Consider God’s response to the first Christian martyr recorded in Acts 7.

Why was the crowd seeking a sign?  Did they want literal bread or the True Bread from heaven, Jesus?  What are the implications of Jesus’ saying that He is bread of life?  Consider how you should live if Jesus is the True Bread.  Read John 6:30-35.

How far does the Lord’s love reach?  If you know the song, “Your Love, O Lord,” hum or sing the song as you offer praise to the Lord for His steadfast love!  Read Psalm 36:5, 10.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Monday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

What way have you chosen? What do you set before you? To what do you cling? What path are you running? Meditate on these questions as you read Psalm 119:30-32.

Why should you seek the Lord today? Is there anything you need to forsake? What are the implications of Isaiah’s promise that God will “abundantly pardon” those who return to Him? Read Isaiah 55:6-7.

Stoning of the ProtomartyrWhat was the source of the grace and power that Stephen shared? What do you think Stephen looked like when he was addressing the council? Read Acts 6:8-10, 15 and consider praying for grace and power sufficient to fulfill God’s purpose for you.

To what lengths do you go to seek Jesus? Are you seeking Jesus or what He can give you? For what kind of food are you working? Have you believed in the One whom God has sent? Meditate on John 6:22-29.

What is a “wonderful deed” that the Lord has done for you? With whom could you share what He did for you? Read Psalm 9:1-2.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk3 Sunday

Please join us at church today to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ! For directions see our home page.

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Easter3_Jesus PeterWhy do you think Peter and his companions went fishing? What was Jesus getting at in asking Peter three times if he loved Him? Read John 21:1-19 and consider what you would say if Jesus asked those questions of you.

Why was Saul persecuting the church? Why was Ananias willing to find Saul and deliver a message to him? Would you be willing to let God use you to help someone else find Him? Read Acts 9:1-20 and then ask God to show you whom you could help on their faith journey.

Have you ever experienced healing? In either case, what was your response? If the Lord hid his face from you, what would be your response? What requests did David make of the Lord in Psalm 30?

Why is the Lamb (Jesus) considered worthy? Who are the ones offering praise to the Lamb in Revelation 5:11-14? What is being offered to the Lamb? How could we intentionally join in, offering the Lamb what is due to Him? Think about how you could offer praise to Jesus daily.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

Photo:  Beacon Hill Press

Devotional for “Ashes to Fire” – Easter Wk2 Friday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Roman Road
“Teach me your way, O Lord,
and lead me on a level path
because of my enemies.” – Psalm 27:11

Are you learning the Lord’s ways?  Are you walking on a “level path?”  Do you find it hard to “wait for the Lord?”  Why or why not?  Read Psalm 27:11, 13-14 (or if you have time read the entire Psalm).

How can we introduce others to Jesus?  Are you a messenger who announces peace and brings good news?  Consider how you might become one “who announces salvation.”  Think about the implications of Isaiah 52:6-7.

Read Acts 5:34-35, 38-39 and consider whether Gamaliel was right.  What evidence do you have to back up your answer?  Are you trying to support or overthrow what God is doing in our day?  Pray about your answer.

What do we learn about Jesus in John 6:1-15?  Why did Jesus challenge His disciples to feed the crowd?  What did the disciples learn about themselves?  What overwhelming need are you facing that you are wondering how to meet?  Read the passage from John 6 and consider how Jesus may be challenging your faith today.

Read Psalm 134:1-2 and consider taking time this evening before bedtime to offer praise to God.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for Ashes to Fire – Easter Wk2 Sunday

Please join us at church today to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ! For directions see our home page.

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Easter2_Jesus ThomasJesus offered His disciples His Holy Spirit.  Have you invited His Holy Spirit to live in and through you?  What is your response to Thomas’ reaction to the news that Jesus had risen?  What would have been your reaction to seeing the risen Jesus appear in the room with you?  Read John 20:19-31 and consider why John wrote this Gospel.

Why did the high priest want the apostles to be quiet?  Why did Peter say that they needed to obey God rather than any human authority?  What was the content of the apostles’ message?  What we we learn from the apostles’ example?  Read Acts 5:27-32.

How have you seen the Lord’s goodness this week?  Take a moment to give Him thanks!  Has the Lord become your salvation?  If the Lord has made this day for you, what does that imply about what you should do with it?  Mediate on Psalm 118:1-2, 14-29.

John says in Revelation 1:4-8 that Jesus loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood.  Have you accepted Jesus’ love for you and the deliverance from sin that He bought for us with His own blood?  What does it mean for John to say that we are to be priests serving his God and Father?  How are you serving God today?  Think about the implications of this passage for your life and service to others.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

Photo:  Beacon Hill Press

Devotional for Ashes to Fire – Easter Wk1 Saturday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

What are your favorite “glad songs of victory?”  Did you “recount the deeds of the Lord” to someone yesterday?  To whom could you tell the story of what God has done for you?  Think about Psalm 118;14-15, 17.

Isaiah says that there is only one God and that He provided for us a Savior.  What should our response be to such a God?  Meditate on Isaiah 45:21-23.

Before the Sanhedrin, St. John's College, Cambridge
Peter and John before the Sanhedrin

How should we respond if the commands of God and those of men differ?  How did Peter & John respond?  Consider the implications of Acts 4:18-20 for our day.

Why did Jesus’ disciples have so much trouble believing that Jesus had risen from the dead?  Do you believe?  What is the good news that His disciples are to share with the world?  Are you spreading the good news?  How?  Read Mark 16:9-15.

How can we “bless the Lord?”  What could we do or say that would be a blessing to God?  Think about this as you read Psalm 104:1, 33-34.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for Ashes to Fire – Easter Wk1 Friday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

What does the Psalmist mean by his reference to the “cornerstone?”  How did the Apostle Paul make use of the word “cornerstone” (see Ephesians 2:19-21)?  Read Psalm 118:22-24 and compare.

Has the Lord “swept away your transgressions like a cloud and your sins like a mist?”  Have you asked Him to?  Pray a prayer based on your response to what Isaiah says in Isaiah 44:21-22.

How use does Peter make of the word “cornerstone” in Acts 4:10-11?  What does this tell us about who Peter believed Jesus to be?  What other clues to who Jesus is can you find in this passage?

Boat on the Sea of Galilee (Lake Tiberias, Gennesareth).
“Simon Peter said to them, ‘I am going fishing.’” – John 21:3

Why, do you think, did Peter and these other disciples go back to fishing?  How were they able to catch so many fish?  Why didn’t Peter wait for the boat to take him to shore?  What do you learn about Jesus and about the disciples from John 21:1-14?

The Psalmist is determined to use his life to “recount the deeds of the Lord.”  What are you doing with your life?  Are you entering the “gates of righteousness?”  Meditate on Psalm 118:17, 19, and 28.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for Ashes to Fire – Easter Wk1 Thursday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Blue Marble - 2002
“He sends out his command to the earth” – Psalm 147:15

How often do you sing praises to God?  What usually prompts you to do so?  How important is God’s Word to you?  Where is the evidence in your life of the importance of God’s Word to you?  Read Psalm 147:1, 15, 19.

What are the implications of Isaiah’s saying that there is no god besides the Lord, the King of Israel, and His Redeemer, the Lord of hosts?  What is implied by Isaiah’s saying that we are God’s witnesses?  Meditate on Isaiah 44:6 & 8.

What happens when we repent according to Peter in Acts 3:19-20?  Have you repented?  If not, why not?

What might have been your reaction if you had been with the disciples when they saw the resurrected Jesus for the first time?  How did Jesus prove that He was truly real…alive and not just a vision or a ghost?  What did Jesus help His disciples understand?  What did He ask them to do?  Meditate on Luke 24:35-48.

Put what the Psalmist is saying in Psalm 148:1, 11, 13 into your own words.  How is the Lord praised “from the heavens” and “in the heights?”

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for Ashes to Fire – Easter Wk1 Wednesday

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

For what will you give thanks to God today?  Why do you need to call on His name today?  What has God done for you that you need to tell others about today?  What song of praise for God is on your mind today?  Make a joyful noise to Him!  Mediate on the words of Psalm 105:1-3.

What things in the past will you choose to forget?  What new thing is God wanting to do in your life? What wilderness in your life needs a God-built road?

Canyonlands National Park
“rivers in the desert” – Isaiah 43:19

What is the desert you are crossing that needs a divinely-fed river?  Think about God’s promise to you in Isaiah 43:14, 18-19.

In what way do you need the Lord’s healing?  What would it mean for you to “stand up and walk?”  Are you willing to take that “step?”  Whom do you know who is looking for the wrong thing?  How could you help them to connect with what God wants for them?  Pray about how the transformation of Acts 3 could impact you or those you know today.

Have you ever been confused about what God is doing in your life or in our world?  Have you ever looked back in your life and realized that Jesus was with you even when you didn’t realize it?  How does the story of Jesus’ walk to Emmaus challenge your faith today?  Meditate on what it might mean for Jesus to walk with you today as you read Luke 24:13-35.

How might it change the way you live if you choose to always give glory to God instead of seeking it for yourself?  In what ways have you seen that “the Lord has been mindful of us?”  In what ways have you seen that your reverence for God has resulted in blessing?  Read Psalm 115:1, 12-13 thoughtfully.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

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Devotional for Ashes to Fire – Lent Wk6 Thursday (Holy Week)

Consider the following questions as you meditate on the Bible passages for today (see the link to the passages below).

Does Psalm 89:26-27 tell us something about Jesus?  If so, what?  In 1 Timothy 6 and in Revelation 17 & 19 Jesus is called “King of Kings and Lord of lords.”  Do you see any parallels with our reading today in Psalm 89?

How has the Lord brought you good news?  How has He bound up your broken heart?  How has the Lord set you free?  Meditate on the Mission of the Servant of God shared in Isaiah 61:1-2.

"I am the Bread of Life."What does the Lord’s Supper mean to you?  Do you pay attention to the meaning being conveyed in the bread and fruit of the vine?  What is the meaning of the New Covenant that Jesus is establishing with His disciples?  Think about what Paul is telling the church in 1 Corinthians 11:27-29.

What is the significance of Jesus reading the passage from Isaiah 61 in the synagogue in Nazareth?  How did Jesus fulfill this passage?  Examine Luke 4:16-21 to determine how Jesus fulfilled Isaiah’s words.

What are the things or people we are tempted to depend upon instead of the Lord?  How can we make Him our refuge instead of other things?  Meditate on the words of Psalm 142:5.

Click here to read today’s Bible passages.

Photo:  Creative Commons License Kathy via Compfight