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Devo2017-09-28T11:20:03+08:00

16 June 2021 – Matthew 7:7 (NIV)

Scripture

7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.

Reflection

Today’s verse is in connection with prayer as both words ‘seek’ and ‘knock’ are metaphors for prayer and the word ‘knocking’ is also associated with the Rabbinic sayings as a metaphor for prayer. Jesus is expounding his statement as seen in verse 7 by combining verse 7 with verses 9-11. The reason for this confidence in an answered prayer (see verse 8) is explained by a consideration of fatherhood. A human father will not meet his son’s request for food with useless or even harmful substitutes. Yet human fathers are evil – referring to humankind’s sinful state (v.11), but they still in their sinful state knows what good gifts are. Jesus is contrasting this image of fatherhood with that of a divine and holy Father. How much more will God knows what good gifts to give us. But take caution, to not be in a relationship with God for the good gifts. God already gave us the ultimate gift (in the person of Jesus).

So next time when you do pray for something, keep verse 7 in mind that’s linked with the assurances as seen in verse 8, but never love the good gifts more than the Giver himself or forget the ultimate gift you’ve already received, namely Jesus Christ.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in your current situation

Prayer

God, You hear. Please let the displaced people of the world know that they are heard. And help us to hear them.

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By |June 16th, 2021|Week 3|

15 June 2021 – Matthew 12:40 (NIV)

Scripture

40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

Reflection

The sad irony behind Jesus’ reply in today’s verse is the fact that Jesus just performed a significant miracle (Luke 11:29-32), and yet the religious leaders asked Jesus for a miraculous sign (Matt. 12:38) indicating they rejected the many signs given so far by Jesus. And for Jesus to answer them as seen in verse 40, Jesus is declaring the religious leaders already rejected him. Because for Jesus to fulfil this sign (to be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth), He would have to be rejected, die, and be buried. And by the time this sign would be accomplished, it would be too late for the religious leaders to accept His right to rule over the nation as King. By comparing it to Jonah, Jesus was also contrasting the difference that 1) a pagan city (Nineveh) believed when 2) a prophet told them the truth and now 1) the religious leaders refuse to believe even though 2) Jesus the Messiah himself tells them the truth.

We today have this miraculous sign of the cross and everything it embodies. Let this sign of ultimate love continues to propel you to believe in the truth and the person of Jesus Christ and don’t allow the devil to sow doubt in your mind.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in your current situation

Prayer

“I thank you, Lord, for Your beautiful, multicultural, intergenerational family. Revive and sanctify us once again we pray. Forgive our many sins and make us holy. Set our hearts on fire again with the good news of Your gospel.”

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By |June 15th, 2021|Week 3|

14 June 2021 – Joshua 1:9 (NIV)

Scripture

9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Reflection

Today’s verse is one of three calls from God to Joshua to be strong and courageous (Vv. 6–7, 9 and 18.) The only difference with this third call was that it was based on God’s presence. The former two calls to be strong and courageous were based on God’s promise and God’s power. We also read in Deuteronomy 1:21; 31:18 and Joshua 8:1 how God encourages Joshua to not be afraid or to be discouraged. The reason why God encouraged Joshua three times with these words/themes was that Joshua was about to lead the nation of Israel into the Promise Land – the very same Promised Land that was promised to Abraham in Genesis (more than 400 years ago). Talk about being under pressure.

Joshua probably had times when he felt weak, inadequate, and frightened. Perhaps he considered resigning before the Conquest even began. But God knew all about his feelings of personal weakness and fear and hence telling Joshua three times, to be strong and courageous. These calls with their accompanying assurances (God’s promise, God’s power, and God’s presence) were sufficient to last a lifetime. And these same assurances are available to us today too and will last a lifetime. No matter what you’re facing right now. Remember God’s promises, His power, and his presence is with you in the form of the Holy Spirit. Take heart and be courageous.

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in your current situation

Prayer

Invite the Holy Spirit to be present as you spend a moment in silence; Give thanks for one thing that you’re grateful for right now, and use it to reflect on the goodness of God; Bring to God one thing that’s on your mind right now, and lift it before Him; Devote the remainder of your day to Jesus:

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By |June 14th, 2021|Week 3|

11 June 2021 – Philippians 2:12-13 (NIV)

Scripture

12 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

Reflection

The apostle Paul had just talked about Jesus’ obedience on the cross in verse 8:

“And being found in appearance as a man,

he humbled himself

by becoming obedient to death—

even death on a cross!”

The Philippians are commended by Paul for their obedience, when he was with them and when he wasn’t with them anymore. We might have all encountered instances where one would obey a command or law when an authority figure (policeman, a traffic guard, a parent…) was around, but was quick to disobey when there was no one there to hold you accountable (mask or no mask, jaywalking, red light/green light, don’t eat that cookie, you name it!).

Paul’s encouragement is for people to continue to work out their salvation with fear and trembling, not to earn it by what they do, because Jesus’ work of atonement was fully done on the cross, but for each one to be actively willing to be transformed to the likeness of Jesus and aware of the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives. It is from the cross that the work of sanctification is carried out, by the help of the Holy Spirit!

“Am I prepared to let God grip me by His power and do a work in me that is worthy of Himself? Sanctification is not my idea of what I want God to do for me; sanctification is God’s idea of what He wants to do for me, and He has to get me into the attitude of mind and spirit where at any cost I will let Him sanctify me wholly.” – Oswald Chambers

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in your current situation

Prayer

Invite the Holy Spirit to show you something to rejoice over. Look beyond your current circumstances to the Lord of all Creation. Remember that you are fully, unconditionally loved. Take time to rejoice in the goodness of the God who has saved you.

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By |June 11th, 2021|Week 2|

10 June 2021 – Ruth 1:16-17 (NIV)

Scripture

16 But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. 17 Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.”

Reflection

There are so many lessons to be learned from the book of Ruth. Her story and testimony overflows with the sense of loyalty and love towards Naomi, her mother-in-law, and similarly towards the Israelites and God, as she, a Moabite woman, declared: “Your people will be my people and your God my God”. Ruth’s attitude was unwavering! There is a Hebrew word for this loyal, unmerited love displayed by Ruth. It’s called hesed (literally “loyalty born from love”).

Logically speaking, it didn’t make sense for Ruth to follow Naomi back to Israel- it would be harder for her to remarry and as a foreigner she would be considered an outcast, yet it is through her that we see love overflowing. Naomi found in Ruth the support and encouragement in a time of loss and hopelessness. The hesed of the Lord is evident throughout the book! As the story unfolds we see God’s loyalty and faithfulness to Ruth as she meets Boaz and eventually marry him.

How can we tangibly show our love and loyalty to God and His people today by worshiping Him and serving others?

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in your current situation

Prayer

Today, take a moment, wherever you are, to PAUSE in God’s presence. Find a spot where you can stop and be quiet for a minute.

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By |June 10th, 2021|Week 2|

9 June 2021 – Hebrews 11:1 (NIV)

Scripture

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

Reflection

We had just recently ended another season of Alpha at SCF, a place where non-believers/new believers can explore life’s big questions and the Christian faith in a safe and open environment. In one of the sessions the guests tackled the question “How can I have faith?”. In the video they mentioned how, in one sense, we exercise faith every day (for example, if you are seating on a chair, you are exercising faith right now; you do not know how the chair was made or who made it, but you trust it won’t just fall apart when you seat on it!). Faith is trust, and for Christians, that means trust in Jesus.

It is amazing when we witness people taking that leap of faith and accepting Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Our faith journey does not stop there. We start with believing that God is who He says He is. Then we go on in believing and trusting He will do what He says He will do!

“Faith… is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods.” -C.S. Lewis

Thoughts for the day

  • What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
  • What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
  • How can you apply this message in your current situation

Prayer

Invite the Holy Spirit to be present with you in this moment And then, wait. Allow God’s peace to draw near.

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By |June 9th, 2021|Week 2|