Guest Contribution by Rick Bouchard, Barrie Campus, Audio & Production Team
Welcome to Day 8 of the 24 Day Devotion. So glad you’re joining us! Each day for 24 days as a church, we’re going to read one chapter of the Gospel of Luke and post a devotion on it.
If you’ve never read the Bible, we’re so glad you’re joining us. And if you read the Bible, we hope this helps you grow in your faith.
Need to catch up? Start at Luke 1 – Is The New Testament A Lie? and follow along. Today’s devotion is below.
READ Luke 8
When reading the chapter, for me these elements stand out. We need to listen to God’s word, hear it with our hearts and go forward with faith and confidence.
Listen to God’s word:
In the parable of the farmer, four different groups of people heard the word but only one group, those who retained and persevered, we’re able to have an impact for God’s kingdom.
At first when I started my relationship with Jesus, I felt like I could conquer the world! I was so on fire for Him. But after a while that fire started to fade, and it took more of an effort to resist old temptations.
For a season, I walked away from God and lived life apart from Him.
I believed the lie that I didn’t need church in my life and that I could do it on my own. This went on for a few years, but thankfully, God opened my eyes and I started attending church again. With the help of some amazing mentors, I found myself growing spiritually and started on my journey of serving and producing fruit for God’s kingdom.
Do you allow life’s riches, worries and pleasures to intervene with your walk?
When the going gets tough, are you tempted to walk away?
Hear it with our hearts:
Jesus said, “anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand” Luke 8:8. I believe there was a time in my life when all I had was a “head knowledge” of God’s existence. I heard the stories of Jesus during the Christmas holidays and Easter. I always believed in God but never had a personal connection with Him. Later in high school, my best friend gave his life over to God. He began explaining to me the changes that took place including his entire family accepting Jesus as their personal Savior. It felt like my heart was on fire as he was explaining this to me and I started transitioning from a “head knowledge” to a deeper inner level. I began hearing the word of God speak to my heart.
Is your heart open to God’s word?
When a mentor or close friend gives you advise, do you take the time to consider and reflect on what God may be trying to say?
The woman subject to bleeding went forward, touched Jesus robe and she was healed. Jairus, whose daughter was dying, went forward and knelt before Jesus pleading for his daughter’s life. Jesus reassures him saying “Don’t be afraid; just have faith, and she will be healed.” Luke 8:50.
When life throws you a major curve ball, in my case losing my job after 23 years , I looked forward. I did so with fear and trembling but fully trusting God with my circumstances.
My wife and I moved to Barrie in the summer of 2010. We started attending Connexus shortly after and are thankful to God for introducing us to this amazing church family. We both found work and couldn’t be happier. God is good!
Not only do we need to hear God’s word, we need to apply it to our lives. Jesus commands the waves, winds and demons, even death to obey Him but gives us a choice to follow him. Even when choosing to follow Christ, one must always guard against the worries of this world from affecting our faith.
Pray that God keeps us on the straight and narrow, with our gaze looking forward always being ready to do the work God has set aside for us, reaching the unchurched!
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