Weekly Devotions

Raise Your Expectations of God

Raise Your Expectations of God

God works in people’s hearts when we expect him to do so.

Before each one of our services here at Parkway Church, I pray, “God, it would be a waste of time to go out there and talk to those people without expecting you to do something.  So I’m going to thank you in advance for changing lives.  I expect it to happen in faith.  Not because of who I am, but because of who you are.”  That is the faith that God uses to change lives.

Very few people come to Jesus Christ the first time they hear the Good News. They’ve got to think about it and take the time to make the right decision.

Never give up on anybody.  Nobody’s hopeless!  You have to trust God. Hebrews 11:1 says,

“Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see”

(NIV).

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Make Friends, Make Disciples

Make Friends to Make Disciples

Everybody’s looking for a true friend — not just acquaintances but people who are there with you when you need them most.  God wants you to build true friendships with the people that are already in your life so that you can share the Gospel with them. God has put these people — your co-workers and classmates, neighbors and teammates — in your life specifically so you can share with them about the most important decision they will ever make.  If you don’t tell them about what Christ has done for them, then who will?

The Bible says in Romans 12:16,

“Be friendly with everyone. Don’t be proud and feel that you are smarter than others. Make friends with ordinary people”

(CEV).

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Go On Mission

Go on Mission Together

You were made for a mission.  God wants you to share his love with other people — your friends, family, and the people you work with — who are not in His family.

Why does he want you to do that?  Because God wants everybody in His family.  God has never made a person he didn’t love and have a purpose for.  God has never made a person that Jesus Christ didn’t die for.  So God wants us to share that Good News.

But you’re not alone! God wants you to go on mission with other people.  Philippians 1:27 says,

“You are standing side by side with one strong purpose — to tell the Good News”

(TLB).

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When You Face Trouble

When You Face Trouble, Community Is Your Safety Net

When you experience suffering in life, you need people to weep with you.  There are situations that nobody should ever have to go through alone. Nobody should ever have to wait in the hospital while a loved one is in a life-and-death surgery.  No woman should ever have to wait alone for the lab report on a problem pregnancy.  Nobody should have to wait alone for news from a battlefield.  Nobody should have to stand alone at the edge of an open grave.  Nobody should have to spend the first night alone after a spouse has died or walked out.

The fact is, some of these things are going to happen to you.  They’re inevitable. You’re going to go through tragedy.  You’re going to get bad news. You’re going to experience heartache.  Only a fool would go through life totally unprepared for something that you know is going to happen.  The time to build the safety net — the network of supporters and friends — is now.

What is God’s safety net?

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Community

Community: God’s Answer to Defeat

Who’s watching out for you?  You need people who will defend you, stand up for you and protect you, help you stay on track, and warn you.  We all need this, because we all have blind spots.

 

Philippians 2:4 says,

“Look out for one another’s interest, not just your own”

(TEV).  If you want a counter-culture verse, that’s it!  In America, the general idea is it’s all about “me” — my needs, my interests, my wants, and my ambitions.

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In The Journey Of Life

In the Journey of Life, We Need Each Other!

The Bible says in Colossians 2:6-7,

“As you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him”

(ESV).  The Bible often compares life to a walk, because you don’t just sit still in life.  We are on a journey!  Throughout the New Testament we’re told to walk in wisdom, in love, in light, in obedience, and in the Spirit.

 One of the key ways that God tells us to walk is this:  You were never meant to walk through life alone.  You find community in your spiritual family — the Body of Christ.

 Some of you say, “What’s wrong with walking alone?  I like waking alone. I n fact, I prefer it.  I can go at my own pace.  I don’t have to wait for anybody.”  You may like walking alone, but you need others to walk with you through life.
 

 Let me give you three reasons why:

  1. It’s safer. Have you ever had to walk through a dark alley at night or down a long road in the countryside by yourself? I t can be a little scary. It’s safer to walk through life with others
  2. It’s supportive. There’s an old Zambian proverb that says, “When you run alone, you run fast. But when you run together, you run far.”  Life is not a 50-yard dash; it’s a marathon!  The only way you’re going to finish the race well and not burn out is by having other people involved in your life through meaningful relationships.
  3. It’s smarter. You learn more by walking with others than you do by yourself. Proverbs 28:26 says, “Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool.” In other words, if you’re the only one who thinks something and nobody agrees with you, you may be walking in the wrong direction. When you walk by yourself through life, you don’t have anybody to go, “We’re going the wrong direction.  We’ve got to get back on the path and go in the right direction.”
Ephesians 4:16 says, “

As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love”

(NLT, second edition).

You’ve got to have other people in your life to help you grow into the person God made you to be.  Life is about relationships.  God is love, and he wants you to learn to love him and to love others.  Those are the two greatest lessons in life.

 Let’s Do Life Together

 Pastor Greg


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