Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of
LivingFree.org

Monday, March 23, 2015

Today's Scripture
"He lays the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations."
Numbers 14:18 NLT 

Thoughts for Today
Parents hand down possessions to their children. Antiques, rings, the family Bible, property . . . Through their influence, they also hand down character traits, beliefs, habits, behaviors . . .

Some hand-me-downs are good. Others can result in pain, dysfunction, and aimlessness. Whenever a family member has a life-controlling problem, the entire family is affected. These negative behaviors can be handed down from generation to generation if the chain is not broken.

Although much attention is given to alcoholism running in families, other dependencies and behaviors often have similar results. Negative attitudes and unproductive lifestyles can also pass from generation to generation.


Consider this …
Many children grow into adulthood carrying baggage they picked up during childhood. Dysfunctional behaviors and belief systems children learn from parents often affect their adult relationships.

The good news is that the grip of dysfunctional hand-me-downs can be broken. This week we will look at words of hope from God's Word for sons and daughters who have been handed down dysfunctional pain.

“All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” 1 Peter 1:24-25 NIV

Prayer
Father, I thank you that no matter what negative influences have affected my life, there is hope in Jesus and in the promises of the Bible. In Jesus' name . . .
 


These thoughts were drawn from …


Understanding the Times and Knowing What to Do
by Dr. Jimmy Ray Lee. This book offers biblical strategies for ministry to our family and friends. Contemporary issues and needs faced by society are addressed with biblical principles that are timeless. Ideal for small group leaders and Sunday school teachers who want a better understanding of ministry in an addictive culture.












We hope these devotions are a blessing to you and to others in your life. We are happy to provide them for you at no cost, but thought you might want to consider a donation to help our ministry with the expense involved. You can safely donate through our website . Thank you!


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©Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day® devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN, www.LivingFree.org. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of
LivingFree.org

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Today's Scripture
"See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are!" 1 John 3:1 NLT

Thoughts for Today
Very often our picture of God, our heavenly Father, is shaped by the behavior of our earthly father. A godly father will influence his children to trust in a loving heavenly Father. But many children have grown into adulthood with a distorted view of God our Father because they could not trust their earthly father.

To some people, the word father brings to mind a father who was abusive, neglectful, or not there when they needed him. They are struggling with a "father vacuum"—a wall between them and their earthly father and a distorted view of a heavenly Father they cannot accept.

Of course, no father can compare with our heavenly Father because no earthly father is perfect. But the heavenly Father is the model for the earthly father as provider, healer of hurts, and example of righteousness.


Consider this …
Are you a father? A study of the names of God is a good place to begin if you want to be a better father and to pave the way for your children to view their heavenly Father as One who loves them and will always be there for them. One of His names that brings assurance and should be practiced by all fathers is being present—Jehovah-shammah, "The Lord Is There" (Ezekiel 48:35).

If you are dealing with a father vacuum, studying the names of God can be healing. A search for the truth about His character will reveal a Father of great love, compassion, and mercy. One who will never leave you nor forsake you. A Father waiting for you with open arms.

God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. Psalm 46:1 NLT

Prayer
Father, thank you for your love, forgiveness, and faithfulness. Help me to grow in faith as I better understand your holiness and goodness and love. I thank you that you will never leave me nor forsake me. I thank you that you care about everything that concerns me and walk with me through the good times and the bad. In Jesus' name . . .


These thoughts were drawn from …


Understanding the Times and Knowing What to Do
by Dr. Jimmy Ray Lee. This book offers biblical strategies for ministry to our family and friends. Contemporary issues and needs faced by society are addressed with biblical principles that are timeless. Ideal for small group leaders and Sunday school teachers who want a better understanding of ministry in an addictive culture.












We hope these devotions are a blessing to you and to others in your life. We are happy to provide them for you at no cost, but thought you might want to consider a donation to help our ministry with the expense involved. You can safely donate through our website . Thank you!


Living Free Facebook Community

Visit us on Facebook!


©Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day® devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN, www.LivingFree.org. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of
LivingFree.org

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Today's Scripture
"So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." John 8:36 NIV

Thoughts for Today
Jesus knows each of us personally. Before the world began, God had a plan for your release from hand-me-downs. You are more than a number on a computer screen or just another name in a counselor's appointment book. Jesus knows who you are, and He knows your family tree.

Yes, Jesus knows everything about you. Everything. And He loves you unconditionally! He loves you so much that He suffered and died on a cross so you and I can have freedom from every sin, every fear, every habit that weighs us down.


Consider this …

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 1 Peter 1:18-19 NIV

If you will turn to Him and trust Him, Jesus will set you free to live an abundant life. And when He sets you free, you will be free indeed.

Prayer
Lord, Thank you for loving me so much that you died for me. Please forgive my sins and set me free from every negative influence in my life that prevents me from serving you fully and finding the abundant life you have provided. In Jesus' name . . .


These thoughts were drawn from …


Understanding the Times and Knowing What to Do
by Dr. Jimmy Ray Lee. This book offers biblical strategies for ministry to our family and friends. Contemporary issues and needs faced by society are addressed with biblical principles that are timeless. Ideal for small group leaders and Sunday school teachers who want a better understanding of ministry in an addictive culture.












We hope these devotions are a blessing to you and to others in your life. We are happy to provide them for you at no cost, but thought you might want to consider a donation to help our ministry with the expense involved. You can safely donate through our website . Thank you!


Living Free Facebook Community

Visit us on Facebook!


©Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day® devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN, www.LivingFree.org. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of
LivingFree.org

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Today's Scripture
"You call on a Father who judges each person’s work impartially." 1 Peter 1:17 NIV

Thoughts for Today
God's Word offers hope to sons and daughters who have been handed down dysfunctional pain. First, God is fair. He "judges each man's work impartially." Children raised by an abusive or neglectful father often have an incorrect view of God, imagining Him to be like their earthly father. The good news is our heavenly Father is perfect and fair.

However, God's impartiality does not take away our personal responsibility. Although genetic inheritance and social surroundings may influence us, they do not eliminate our responsibility to God. We have the freedom—and responsibility—to make our own choices. We are not locked into our earthly father's way of life. Even if we have been raised by a dysfunctional or abusive earthly father, we can choose to follow our heavenly Father and serve Him.

Consider this …
No matter what your background, God has given you a choice. If you grew up in a dysfunctional home, will you continue that dysfunctional pattern in your life? Or will you choose to break out of that futile lifestyle and build your life on the foundation of God's love and righteousness?

"Choose today whom you will serve. . . . But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15 NLT

Prayer
Father, I thank you that you are perfect and fair. And I thank you that you have given me the privilege . . . and responsibility . . . to choose how I will live. I choose to follow You. Help me serve you faithfully and make wise choices day by day. In Jesus' name . . .


These thoughts were drawn from …


Understanding the Times and Knowing What to Do
by Dr. Jimmy Ray Lee. This book offers biblical strategies for ministry to our family and friends. Contemporary issues and needs faced by society are addressed with biblical principles that are timeless. Ideal for small group leaders and Sunday school teachers who want a better understanding of ministry in an addictive culture.












We hope these devotions are a blessing to you and to others in your life. We are happy to provide them for you at no cost, but thought you might want to consider a donation to help our ministry with the expense involved. You can safely donate through our website . Thank you!


Living Free Facebook Community

Visit us on Facebook!


©Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day® devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN, www.LivingFree.org. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of
LivingFree.org

Friday, March 27, 2015

Today's Scripture
"Give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect." Romans 12:1-2 NLT

Thoughts for Today
As you believe and obey God's truth, He will help you develop godly behavior patterns.

It is interesting to trace our family tree and even do generational behavior studies; however, freedom comes first by receiving Christ as Savior and following Him. To live a life free from enslaving hand-me-downs, it is imperative to walk out God's behavior patterns—and we can only do that with His help.


Consider this …
A person who receives Christ as Savior should immediately enter a discipleship process to deal with hand-me-downs. Some people who have been a Christian for years still carry the baggage of hand-me-downs. They also need discipleship. God has boundaries that, when observed, bring His love and blessing. An accountability partner or godly mentor can help through this time.

Christ-centered support groups that provide both support and accountability can also help people struggling with hand-me-downs. The group's focus should be on Christ, and the curriculum should emphasize biblical principles of behavior.

Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near. Hebrews 10:24-25 NLT

Prayer
Father, thank you that my sins have been forgiven through Jesus. Help me with the walk. Help me leave behind my sinful hand-me-down behaviors and develop behavior patterns that are pleasing to you. Help me find the right individuals to teach me and guide me through this process. In Jesus' name . . .


These thoughts were drawn from …


Understanding the Times and Knowing What to Do
by Dr. Jimmy Ray Lee. This book offers biblical strategies for ministry to our family and friends. Contemporary issues and needs faced by society are addressed with biblical principles that are timeless. Ideal for small group leaders and Sunday school teachers who want a better understanding of ministry in an addictive culture.












We hope these devotions are a blessing to you and to others in your life. We are happy to provide them for you at no cost, but thought you might want to consider a donation to help our ministry with the expense involved. You can safely donate through our website . Thank you!


Living Free Facebook Community

Visit us on Facebook!


©Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day® devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN, www.LivingFree.org. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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