Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of
LivingFree.org

Monday, September 12, 2016

Today's Scripture

"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you." (Philippians 4:8–9 NLT)
 
Thoughts for Today
 
Many of us have passion—the object of strong desire. This week we will discuss passion as something closely related to emotions. Passion can be either a positive or negative influence in our life. 
 
Hopeless passion may say this: "I allow my emotions to rule my actions and perspectives of my relationships and circumstances." This person is controlled by a roller coaster of emotions. 
 
Hopeful passion may say this: "I love the beauty in the world and appreciate the richness of the relationships and blessings I have." This perspective can be more difficult to maintain but results in a better life.
 
Consider this …

Passion can be full of hope and joyful expectancy . . . or result in a sense of hopelessness.  Passion can either propel us into healthy relationships . . . or push us into isolation. 
 
Hopeful passion helps us set goals and believe that with God's help we can reach them. Hopeless passion makes it difficult for us to believe we can ever reach goals.
 
When things are going well, hopeful passion makes us rejoice and focus on our blessings. Hopeless passion says, "This is too good to be true" or "This won't last."
 
Hopeful passion may reflect on the past or be hopeful about the future but is content in the now. Hopeless passion believes more in the past than in the present or future and so conjures up hopelessness in the now. This mindset is based primarily on feelings, not necessarily on truth. 
 
Some passionate people live out joyful expressions of life while others live in a melancholy world full of disappointments and disillusions. What makes the difference? Part of the answer lies in today's scripture. We'll look at more answers tomorrow.
 
Where do you see yourself in all this? Where are you fixing your thoughts?

Prayer

Father, I know that sometimes my outlook is negative. Teach me to live passionately with hope in you. In Jesus' name . . .
 


These thoughts were drawn from . . .

Where is the Image of God in You? by Brad Rymer. The purpose of this study is for us to see how some of the different character traits we have can be used in constructive rather than destructive ways in our lives and relationships so that we are operating more and more in the image of God according to the way He created us. Also, this study can help us better understand others as we build godly relationships. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.


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

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Today's Scripture

"But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint." (Isaiah 40:31 NLT)
 
Thoughts for Today

Hopeful passion excites and motivates us to live a vibrant life no matter what our circumstances. The object of our focus in life can make all the difference. Yesterday's scripture (Philippians 4:8-9) exhorted us to focus on the positives. 
 
Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. (Philippians 4:8 NLT)
 
Today's scripture says to focus on the Lord. Focus on Jesus. His love. His power. His strength. His peace. His joy. His plan for us.
 
Consider this …
 
Jesus said this: "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." (John 10:10 NASB). These words show us the source of hopeless passion (the thief, Satan) and the source of hopeful passion and abundant life (Jesus). Hopeful passion is God-motivated and God-centered. 
 
Hopeful passion sometimes includes suffering. However, it is suffering with a purpose. Paul, a man whose passion to share Christ was seemingly inexhaustible, experienced much suffering. However, he considered the suffering a privilege. "For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him" (Philippians 1:29).
 
Hopeful passion motivates us to focus on accomplishing our God-given purpose. It prevents us from being controlled by our emotions or allowing circumstances to overwhelm us and detour us from the life God wants us to live. 
 
And, of course, Jesus is our greatest example. No matter the circumstances or how Jesus felt, his passion for the mission of the cross was never deterred or extinguished. He focused on his Father and the mission his Father had given him. 
 
Is your focus on circumstances? On what you are feeling? Or is it on Jesus? Only in him will you find abundant life filled with passion and abounding in hope.
 
Prayer

Father, when my focus drifts to circumstances, fear, anxiety, worry, or anything negative, help me refocus on Jesus. In his name . . .
 


These thoughts were drawn from . . .

Where is the Image of God in You? by Brad Rymer. The purpose of this study is for us to see how some of the different character traits we have can be used in constructive rather than destructive ways in our lives and relationships so that we are operating more and more in the image of God according to the way He created us. Also, this study can help us better understand others as we build godly relationships. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.


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, September 15, 2016

Today's Scripture

"Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying." (Romans 12:12 NLT)
 
Thoughts for Today

We've been discussing passion this week. Passion to serve God. Passion to accomplish what he has called us to do. Yesterday we said our passionate service must be motivated by love. Love for God. Love for others. The kind of love that motivated Jesus to suffer and die on the cross to pay the price for our sins.
 
Sadly, we are sometimes motivated by other things. A desire for attention or wanting people to show their gratitude. The feeling of power. Trying to "earn points" with God. Or a multitude of other selfish motives.
 
People of great passion can fall prey to stress, anger, depression, and despair. They may develop an "I don't care" attitude—especially when they are focused on what is wrong in life rather than on what is right and what God is doing to make things right. Passionate people can find themselves in dark places at times.
 
Consider this …
 
We can get off track when things do not go the way we expect them to or when people fail us in ways that are hurtful or upsetting. It's especially easy for that to happen when we are motivated by anything other than love.
 
When this happens, we need to take a step back and ask God to get us back on track and reveal if we have any wrong motives. To help us have a right attitude. As today's scripture says, we need to be comforted by God's ultimate plan for our life, to be patient and always prayerful.
 
Prayer

Father, forgive me for getting off track. Please help me have a right attitude. May my love for you and for people around me grow, and may that love become my motivation for serving. In Jesus' name . . . 
 


These thoughts were drawn from . . .

Where is the Image of God in You? by Brad Rymer. The purpose of this study is for us to see how some of the different character traits we have can be used in constructive rather than destructive ways in our lives and relationships so that we are operating more and more in the image of God according to the way He created us. Also, this study can help us better understand others as we build godly relationships. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.


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, September 14, 2016

Today's Scripture

"In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly." (Romans 12:6-8 NLT)
 
Thoughts for Today

God has equipped us to accomplish his unique plan and purpose for us. Today's scripture passage indicates how he wires each of us uniquely to have passion for various ways to serve. 
 
When you are serving God using the gifts he has given you, your passion will grow. You will be excited about what he is doing through you. If you prophesy, speak out with faith. If one of your gifts is serving, serve well. Be enthusiastic! If you are a teacher, teach well. Be diligent and caring. If your gift is giving, give generously and cheerfully. Remember, God loves a cheerful giver. Has God given you leadership ability? Don't run from it. Assume that responsibility seriously, trusting God to help you. If your gift is for showing kindness, do it gladly. You may be surprised how many people God will place in your path who need that special touch of kindness.
 
Consider this …
 
Jesus had a holy passion for the cross to free us from the power of sin. What motivated that passion? Love. 
 
Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. (Romans 12:9-10 NLT)
 
These verses follow Paul's description of the gifts. They remind us that our primary focus should not be on passion, our personal traits, or even gifts, but on love. Our passion about serving God in the various ways must be motivated by love. Love for God. Love for others. The giving kind of love Jesus has for us.
 
Prayer

Father, thank you for the gifts you've given me. Help me serve you well and passionately. Above all help me be motivated by love. In Jesus' name . . .
 


These thoughts were drawn from . . .

Where is the Image of God in You? by Brad Rymer. The purpose of this study is for us to see how some of the different character traits we have can be used in constructive rather than destructive ways in our lives and relationships so that we are operating more and more in the image of God according to the way He created us. Also, this study can help us better understand others as we build godly relationships. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.


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, September 16, 2016

Today's Scripture

"So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." (1 Corinthians 10:31 NLT)
 
Thoughts for Today

Earlier this week we mentioned hopeful passion is God- and others-centered. If we have hopeful passion, we are passionate about things that glorify God and help others in some way. The apostle Paul remained God-focused in his passion for the Lord despite many difficulties. He said, "For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances" (Philippians 4:11 NIV). 
 
Paul's passion was motivated by a consuming love for Jesus and a great desire to share the love of Jesus with others. Though he experienced ridicule, hatred, beatings, imprisonment, and ultimately execution, he never lost that passion. Why? Because his passion was motivated by love. It was not self-centered. It was God-centered and people-centered. And so no matter what happened to him, he was content as long as he was doing all for the glory of God.
 
Consider this …
 
What are some ways we can be more like Paul? How can we be certain our passion is centered on God and others and not ourselves? We need to know Jesus more intimately by spending more time with him and in the Word. Meditate on Bible passages. Pray . . . and listen to what God is saying. Sometimes we may simply need more "stillness" in our life. "Be still, and know that I am God!" (Psalm 46:10 NLT).
 
Prayer

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life." (Psalm 139:23-24 NLT)
 


These thoughts were drawn from . . .

Where is the Image of God in You? by Brad Rymer. The purpose of this study is for us to see how some of the different character traits we have can be used in constructive rather than destructive ways in our lives and relationships so that we are operating more and more in the image of God according to the way He created us. Also, this study can help us better understand others as we build godly relationships. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.


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.

Choose your language translation

Subscribe to Our
Daily Devotionals Email

These devotions are provided at no charge.
Click here to view a sample Daily Devotion.

Order a Hardcopy of Our Catalog and DVD video
Full Name (first & last)
Email Address*
Phone Number
Address
Address 2
City
State
Zip Code
Country*
Questions/Comments