My family and I have had morning devotions, or family altar as some people call it, every day ever since my wife, Meriqua, and I were married 30 years ago. We have prayed and read the Bible together as well as other devotional books as a family, and it is the only reason why this family has stayed together, and the only reason why God has blessed our family and used our family in ministry all of these years. We read Ephesians 5 and 6 every morning as it relates to the role of each member of the family and how that we need to put on the whole armor of God to fight against the devil who is seeking to destroy our family and all Christian families, churches, and Christians. So, now after 30 years of doing this in our home, we are opening this up to others who don’t have a family to pray with, who don’t have a spouse, or who are single by choice, and to encourage all families who are still intact to go back to the family altar and have devotions together every morning. In these devotions, you may hear me deal with a temptation I’m facing in my life, you may hear me rebuke my wife about not doing what she should be doing, or you may hear me get on one of my children’s cases about something they’re doing. Don’t be shocked; this is real life.
SING “GLORIA PATRI”
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son,
And to the Holy Ghost;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be:
World without end. Amen.
Arthur Pink said, “It is not enough that we pray as private individuals in our closets. We are required to honor God in our families as well. At least twice each day, in the morning and in the evening the whole household should be gathered together to bow before the Lord, to confess their sins, to give thanks for God’s mercies, to seek His help and blessing. Nothing must be allowed to interfere with this duty; all other domestic arrangements are to bend to it.”
PRAY “THE COMMON PRAYER”
Almighty and most merciful Father; We have sinned, and strayed from Thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against Thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; And there is no peace and joy in us. But Thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare Thou us, O God, who confess our sins, our faults, and our failures. Restore those of us who confess our sins and repent; According to Thy promises declared unto us in Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father, for His sake; That we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life,
To the glory of Thy holy Name.
In Jesus Christ Name we pray and for His sake. Amen.
DEVOTIONAL PASSAGE: PSALM 50:1-6
1 The mighty God, even the Lord, hath spoken, and called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof.
2 Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God hath shined.
3 Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him.
4 He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that he may judge his people.
5 Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.
6 And the heavens shall declare his righteousness: for God is judge himself. Selah.
Matthew Henry wrote in his commentary, “This psalm is a psalm of instruction. It tells of the coming of Christ and the day of judgment in which God will call men to account. All the children of men are concerned to know the right way of worshipping the Lord, in spirit and in truth. In the great day, our God shall come, and make those hear his judgement who would not hearken to his law. Happy are those who come into the covenant of grace, by faith in the Redeemer’s atoning sacrifice, and show the sincerity of their love by fruits of righteousness. When God rejects the services of those who rest in outside performances, he will graciously accept those who seek him aright.”
PRAYER FOR GOVERNMENT LEADERS
1 Timothy 2:1-2 says, “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”
President Donald Trump
Vice President Mike Pence
First Lady Melania Trump
Second Lady Karen Pence
Presidential aides: Counsel to the President Donald McGahn
Leaders of federal agencies: Congressional Budget Office Director Keith Hall
State governors: Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf
City mayors: Newark, NJ, Mayor Ras J. Baraka
U.S. Senators: South Dakota Senator Mike Rounds
U.S. Representatives: California Representative Steve Knight
Police Chiefs: Anchorage, AK, Police Chief Doll
Sheriffs: Kern County, CA, Sheriff Anthony M. Wickersham
Military Leaders: General Paul J. Selva, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
All law enforcement officials
Leaders of nations around the world: Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo
PRAYER FOR CHURCH LEADERSHIP
Leaders of the Church of the Nazarene: General Secretary David P. Wilson, General Superintendent Jerry D. Porter, and General Superintendent J. K. Warrick
PRAYER FOR CURRENT EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD
– For the families of the soldiers injured in a car-ramming terror attack in Paris
– For the church family in Nigeria where 11 people were killed in a gun attack
– For peace to prevail in Venezuela where 2 people were killed in an attempted uprising
– For the families of 3 Boy Scouts who were killed in an outing in East Texas
– For the peace of Jerusalem: Psalm 122:6 says, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.”
– Persecuted Christians around the world
PRAYER FOR THE MEDIA
CNN president Jeff Zucker, anchor Brooke Baldwin, and anchor John Berman
please improve, bless, and lead her relationship with Dejan; and strengthen their love; give them wisdom in their behaviour toward each other; make them a strong Christian couple and help them to get married soon
please be with all Christians who are being persecuted; have peace to prevail in the world and have love to prevail among all men
please be with her and save her and her loved ones; protect her from harm
please give the authorities who are investigating a criminal network in her town insight and discernment; please give them the resources they need to help the women and children who are caught up in it; please bring support for her and her son who is also caught up in these events
please bless him with a clear visa, registration, and permit to visit his family in Bangladesh
for strength, power, wisdom, and grace for Your work; have more souls to be won for your Kingdom; please bless him with a car for his ministry
Please give them financial blessings and good health and save them
please help her to do well in all her exams and work
please work things out in his favor, give him a complete turnaround; bless him with health, wealth, well-being, a great career, and healthy relationships
please get her out of the bad relationship she is in and break all soul ties she has to them
PEOPLE WHO HAVE ACCEPTED JESUS CHRIST
PEOPLE WHO HAVE RECOMMITTED THEIR LIVES TO JESUS CHRIST
DEVOTIONAL READING: “Made to Last Forever (Part 1),” from “The Purpose Driven Life,” by Rick Warren
Ecclesiastes 3:11 says, “God has planted eternity in the human heart.”
Abraham Lincoln said, “Surely God would not have created such a being as man to exist only for a day! No, no, man was made for immortality.”
This life is not all there is.
Life on earth is just the dress rehearsal before the real production. You will spend far more time on the other side of death — in eternity — than you will here. Earth is the staging area, the preschool, the tryout for your life in eternity. It is the practice workout before the actual game; the warm-up lap before the race begins. This life is preparation for the next.
At most, you will live a hundred years on earth, but you will spend forever in eternity. Your time on earth is, as Sir Thomas Browne said, “but a small parenthesis in eternity.” You were made to last forever.
The Bible says, “God has planted eternity in the human heart.” You have an inborn instinct that longs for immortality. This is because God designed you, in his image, to live for eternity. Even though we know everyone eventually dies, death always seems unnatural and unfair. The reason we feel we should live forever is that God wired our brains with that desire!
One day your heart will stop beating. That will be the end of your body and your time on earth, but it will not be the end of you. Your earthly body is just a temporary residence for your spirit. The Bible calls your earthly body a “tent,” but refers to your future body as a “house.” The Bible says, “When this tent we live in — our body here on earth — is torn down, God will have a house in heaven for us to live in, a home he himself has made, which will last forever.”
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If you do not know Jesus Christ as your Saviour, John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
The Bible also says in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved…. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and I want to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! I want to congratulate you on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
Until next time, May the Lord Bless You!