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May 31 20

The Sure Foundation for Your Times

by J. M. Farro

   “He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure.”  Isaiah 33:6 NIV

   God gave me this encouraging verse last year, but it has taken on new meaning for me in the midst of this Coronavirus crisis.  It is the Lord’s desire to be “the sure foundation for [our] times.”  He wants to be our “security and stability,” as the Amplified translation says.  He doesn’t want us to become fearful or doubtful when trouble strikes.  He longs for us to keep our focus on Him, and to put our trust in Him, so that we can enjoy His perfect peace at all times. (Isaiah 26:3)  Is this really a possibility in this life?  The Scripture says it is.  The apostle Paul wrote, “Now may the Lord of peace Himself grant you His peace (the peace of His kingdom) at all times and in all ways [under all circumstances and conditions, whatever comes].” (2 Thessalonians 3:16 AMP)  God made provision for us through Christ’s work on the Cross, so that we could have peace and stability in this life – but we have to build our life’s “foundation on the rock,” as Jesus told us. (Matthew 7:24-25 NIV)  If we build our lives on anything but Christ and His truth, any storm could cause us to crumble.

   The Lord also wants to be “a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge” for us.  He not only wants to be our eternal salvation, but He wants to demonstrate His saving acts and works of deliverance in our lives right here and now.  He desires that we look to Him for safety and protection – not just in a pandemic like this one, but in our everyday life.  He also wants to provide us with divine “wisdom and knowledge” in every situation.  Scripture says:  “If any of you lacks wisdom [to guide him through a decision or circumstance], he is to ask of [our benevolent] God, who gives to everyone generously and without rebuke or blame, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5 AMP)  Divine wisdom is ours anytime day or night – just for the asking!

   Isaiah 33:6 ends with this profound statement:  “The fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure.”  If we want our foundation in this life to be unshakeable, if we desire divine salvation and wisdom and knowledge, then we must live our lives in the fear of the Lord.  Scripture says:  “Continue to work out your salvation [that is, cultivate it, bring it to full effect, actively pursue spiritual maturity] with awe-inspired fear and trembling [using serious caution and critical self-evaluation to avoid anything that might offend God or discredit the name of Christ].” (Philippians 2:12 AMP)  If we are more afraid of offending God than people – if we are truly God-pleasers and not people-pleasers (Galatians 1:10) – then we most likely have a healthy fear of God.  And all of these blessings are ours for the claiming in Jesus’ precious and mighty name!

   Lord, I want You to be the sure foundation for my times all the rest of my days.  Teach me how to build every area of my life on You and Your truth.  Be my safety and protection in the midst of these turbulent times, and give me the wisdom and knowledge I need to walk in victory day and night.  Thank You that as I do my best to avoid anything that might offend You or discredit Your name, I will experience the unshakeable peace and unspeakable joy that belong to me in Christ!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

May 24 20

Times of Testing

by J. M. Farro

   “We all experience times of testing, which is normal for every human being.” 1 Corinthians 10:13 TPT  

   The Lord showed me the verse above during my quiet time with Him one morning.  I had been pouring out my heart to Him about how difficult our state’s stay-at-home orders were for me in the midst of this Coronavirus pandemic.  As I write this, it has been more than two months since my loved ones and I have been able to move about freely.

   When the Scripture says that all of us “experience times of testing,” it is meant to encourage us.  God wants us to know that we are not singled out to suffer.  No, “every human being” goes through times of testing and “temptation,” as some translations say.  This verse goes on to say, “But God will be faithful to you.  He will screen and filter the severity, nature, and timing of every test or trial you face so that you can bear it.”  Think about that.  In God’s faithfulness, “He will screen and filter” all of our tests so that they will never push us beyond our ability to endure them.  God will control their “severity,” so that they are not too intense for us.  He will control their “nature,” or the types of tests we face.  And He will control their “timing,” so that they will occur within a timeframe that we can handle.

   This verse continues:  “And each test is an opportunity to trust Him more, for along with every trial God has provided for you a way of escape that will bring you out of it victoriously.”  The Lord wants us to view every test we face as a new “opportunity to trust Him more.”  Each time we face a trial and realize that God has faithfully provided us with an exit path, and brought us out of it “victoriously,” our trust in Him will grow.  Sometimes, the best thing that we can do in the heat of battle is to begin thanking and praising God for His faithfulness to His Word.  Satan and his evil cohorts are not going to hang around long when we are rejoicing in the Lord.

   One of the study notes for this verse in the Passion Translation says:  “God’s faithfulness and grace will limit the severity of every test and prevent you from being tested beyond your ability to cope.  Unlimited grace is available for every believer who faces hardship, temptations, and seasons of difficulty.”  Glory to God!  Whatever you are going through today, believe God when He says that He will equip you to come through it victoriously.  His “unlimited grace” is available to you right now.  Receive it by faith in the name of Jesus, and watch the Lord turn your tests into God-glorifying testimonies!

   Lord, I praise You that because I belong to You, You will “screen and filter” every test I face, and You will control its severity, nature, and timing.  Teach me to look for, and recognize, the way of escape that You provide for me, and help me to make the most of it.  Help me to draw on Your unlimited grace, and to rejoice in Your love and faithfulness continually.  Thank You for ensuring that I come out of my trials even better than before!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

May 17 20

Negotiating Difficult Times

by J. M. Farro

   “The Sovereign Lord is my source of strength.  He gives me the agility of a deer; He enables me to negotiate the rugged terrain.”  Habakkuk 3:19 NET

   If you have ever read the Book of Habakkuk in the Bible, then you know that it tells of God’s plans to punish the wicked in Judah by allowing the Babylonians to invade their country, and to take them into captivity.  Though Habakkuk questions the Lord and His wisdom, by the end of the book, he is singing God’s praises, having decided to put his trust in the Lord.

   After recounting the devastation headed his way, Habakkuk’s last recorded words are:  “The Sovereign Lord is my source of strength.  He gives me the agility of a deer; He enables me to negotiate the rugged terrain.” (Habakkuk 3:19 NET)  The footnote reads:  “Difficult times are coming, but Habakkuk is confident the Lord will sustain him.  Habakkuk will be able to survive, just as the deer negotiates the difficult rugged terrain of the high places without injury.”  The word “negotiate” used here means, “to find a way over or through an obstacle or difficult path.”  Habakkuk takes comfort in the fact that, because he has chosen to make God his source of strength, he will successfully overcome every obstacle and challenge that comes his way.

   The Amplified Translation of this verse says:  “The Lord God is my Strength, my personal bravery, and my invincible army; He makes my feet like hinds’ feet and will make me to walk [not to stand still in terror, but to walk] and make [spiritual] progress upon my high places [of trouble, suffering, or responsibility]!”  Glory to God!  As followers of Christ, you and I don’t have to “stand still in terror” when facing “trouble, suffering, or responsibility.”  On the contrary.  Our God will make us able to “walk” in victory, and to even make “spiritual progress” in the midst of difficult circumstances.

   Right before Habakkuk’s last words in verse 19, he declares in verse 18 (AMP): “Yet I will [choose to] rejoice in the Lord; I will [choose to] shout in exultation in the [victorious] God of my salvation!”  When we choose to find joy in our relationship with the Lord, and to praise Him in dark and difficult times, He will lift us above our circumstances, and lead us onward to victory!

   Lord, teach me how to make You my source of strength, so that I can overcome every obstacle and challenge that comes my way.  Guide me safely through the “rugged terrain” of daily life, and comfort and refresh me whenever I begin to feel weary. Help me to always choose to praise You no matter what happens. (Psalm 34:1 TLB)  Thank You that as I learn to rely on Your loving care and protection, You will lead me in the paths of abundance, vitality, and victory!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

May 10 20

Plenty of Food and Joy

by J. M. Farro

   “In the past God let all the nations do what they wanted.  But God was always there doing the good things that prove He is real.  He gives you rain from heaven and good harvests at the right times.  He gives you plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.”  Acts 14:16-17 ERV

   These verses are from a sermon that the apostle Paul preached to the people of Lystra.  After miraculously healing a man who was crippled from birth, the people there tried to worship him and his traveling companion, Barnabas, as gods.  Paul tells them:  “Men, why are you doing this?  We are not gods.  We are human just like you.  We came to tell you the Good News.  We are telling you to turn away from these worthless things.  Turn to the true living God, the One who made the sky, the earth, the sea, and everything that is in them.” (Acts 14:15 ERV)  Paul is preaching his heart out, and urging the people to turn away from their idols, and to turn to the one true God.

    Paul continues:  “In the past God let all the nations do what they wanted.  But God was always there doing the good things that prove He is real.” (v. 16-17)  Think about that.  Before Jesus came, even in the midst of God letting everyone “do what they wanted,” He was always there giving evidence of His goodness to prove His existence.  How?  “He gives you rain from heaven and good harvests at the right times.” (v. 17)  And here’s my favorite part in the midst of this COVID-19 lockdown:  “He gives you plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.” (v. 17)  Hallelujah!  Right in the midst of increasing shortages of food and supplies, the Lord promises us “plenty of food.”  But He doesn’t stop there.  He “fills [our] hearts with JOY”!  I love the fact that our God takes care of ALL our needs – not just material ones, but emotional and spiritual ones, too.  We may be IN a crisis right now, but we don’t have to let it get INSIDE of us.  We can have Holy Spirit joy and gladness, right in the midst of trouble and turmoil.

   The Message Bible’s translation of verse 17 says:  “When your bellies were full and your hearts happy, there was evidence of good beyond your doing.”  This is talking about supernatural provision and joy.  Glory to God!  Believe it.  Lay hold of it by faith.  And enjoy plenty of food and joy today – and in the days to come!

   Lord, I rejoice in the fact that You are walking closely with me through these difficult times.  Make Yourself real to me now in fresh, new ways.  Speak to my heart, and help me to hear – and to heed – Your voice.  Help me to navigate these challenging times with Your wisdom and grace.  Thank You that I will experience Your supernatural provision and joy throughout this crisis and beyond!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

May 3 20

Don’t Be a Slave to Fear

by J. M. Farro

   “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship.  And by Him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’”  Romans 8:15 NIV

   One of the things that disturbs me most about this Coronavirus pandemic is that people all around us are living in fear.  What are they most afraid of?  Death.  They are literally slaves to fear, as the verse above talks about.  What really saddens me is that there are many Christians who are tormented by the same fears that unbelievers are.  If you are one of these precious people, I have some good news for you.

   As a follower of Christ, you have been delivered from the fear of death once and for all.  Scripture says:  “Since the children have flesh and blood, [Jesus] too shared in their humanity so that by His death He might break the power of him who holds the power of death – that is, the devil – and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.” (Hebrews 2:14-15 NIV)  Even though Jesus has set us free from the fear of death through His own death and resurrection, we can continue to be slaves to that fear by refusing to put our trust in God and His truth.  The Bible clearly states that “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV)  In Christ, we have the authority to resist and rebuke fear whenever it comes against us.  Anytime I begin to feel fearful, I declare:  “Fear, I resist you and rebuke you in the name of Jesus Christ!  You are not of God, and I’m not having you!”  Suddenly, the peace of God washes over me, and I can go about my business calmly and confidently.

   Scripture reveals an important key to living without tormenting fear.  Isaiah 26:3 (NLT) says:  “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, whose thoughts are fixed on You!”  Putting our trust in God, and focusing on Him and His promises, will lead to His “perfect peace.”  On the other hand, dwelling on all of the bad news that is bombarding us right now will keep us fearful and fretful.  Here’s something to think about:  Satan will use your fears against you, if you let him.  He will play on your fears, and he will use them to manipulate you and paralyze you.  And you will never fulfill your God-given destiny, because the devil will continually lead you around by the nose.

   The Bible says that we are “slaves to righteousness” and “slaves to God.” (Romans 6:18; 6:22)  We are no longer slaves to fear, because we have been adopted into God’s family, and His Spirit dwells in us.  We have the privilege of calling God our Father.  Today, I urge you not to settle for a life filled with fear.  Instead, enter into a life of true peace and freedom through our Lord Jesus Christ!

   Lord, by Your grace and power, I refuse to live my life as a slave to fear.  Give me a trusting heart, and show me how to discipline my thoughts so that I can learn to keep my mind fixed on You.  Help me to be quick to resist and rebuke fear whenever it comes against me.  Thank You that my faith and confidence in You and Your promises will enable me to live the overcoming life You have called me to – and I will spend eternity with You!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

Apr 26 20

Trust the Promises of God

by J. M. Farro

   “When I am afraid, I will put my confidence in You.  Yes, I will trust the promises of God.”  Psalm 56:3-4 TLB

   This psalm by King David reveals one of his strategies for overcoming fear in the face of opposition and adversity – he intentionally and firmly puts his confidence and trust in God and His promises.  David knew that if we will learn to keep our trust in the Lord and His Word, He will equip us with everything we need to succeed in every situation that comes our way.

   What is the biggest problem people are facing in the midst of this COVID-19 crisis?  It’s fear.  As followers of Christ, you and I don’t have to be overcome with fear in the midst of this pandemic.  God has given us promises to lay hold of which can dissolve our fears, and enable us to set a Christlike example that will inspire others.  We can meditate on – and declare – God’s Word which says, “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV)  And we can pray for deliverance from ALL of our fears on the basis of God’s promise in Psalm 34:4 (NIV): “I sought the Lord, and He answered me; He delivered me from all my fears.”  The beauty of this particular promise is that it’s already in the form of a powerful declaration of faith.

   Multitudes of Christians are praying and standing on God’s promises of safety and deliverance in Psalm 91 during this pandemic, with good reason.  Here, God’s Word promises divine protection, including angelic protection, to those who belong to the Lord, and put their wholehearted trust in Him.  This psalm specifically declares that God’s people will be protected from every plague and pestilence. (v. 3, 6)  For years, I have declared daily, “Though a thousand fall at my side, though ten thousand at my right hand, it will not come near me!” (v. 7)  I also continually claim God’s promise which assures me that – “The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them.” (Psalm 34:7 NKJV)  Hallelujah!

   Are you concerned about your needs being met during this worldwide crisis?  Stand on God’s promise which says, “God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19 AMP)  Before my husband, Joe, even retired, I began thanking and praising God that He gives us “food and provision” because we fear and reverence Him. (Psalm 111:5 AMP)  And I am continually amazed at how the Lord goes out of His way to prove His promises to us.

   Today, in the midst of these turbulent times, I say – “Let’s keep a firm grip on the promises that keep us going.  God always keeps His word!” (Hebrews 10:23 MSG)

   Lord, help me to always see You as “the God who keeps every promise.” (Psalm 46:6 TLB)  Work in my heart so that my first response to trouble will be to put my trust in You and Your promises.  Help me to memorize and meditate on Your Word continually, so that Your Spirit can remind me of Your promises day and night.  Today, O Lord, I earnestly pray: “Never forget Your promises to me Your servant, for they are my only hope.  They give me strength in all my troubles; how they refresh and revive me!” (Psalm 119:49-50 TLB)

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

Apr 19 20

God Can Make Us Prosper Right Now

by J. M. Farro

   “As long as he sought the Lord, God made him prosper.”  2 Chronicles 26:5 NKJV

   I believe that one of the things that God is trying to teach His people during this worldwide pandemic is that He wants us to make HIM our true Source of supply.  The verse above tells us that as long as King Uzziah of Judah “sought the Lord, God made him prosper.”  When we see God alone as our true Source, we can ask and believe Him for provision and prosperity right in the midst of calamity and catastrophe.  God’s economy is set apart from the world’s economy.  He has an infinite supply of whatever we need.  His supply never runs dry, no matter what is going on in the world.  If the economy, your job, or the government are your true source, then you have every reason to worry.  With one pandemic like this one, you can be wiped out of everything you depend upon.

   The Amplified translation of this verse says:  “As long as he sought (inquired of, yearned for) the Lord, God made him prosper.”  God wants, and expects, His children to consult Him on all things great and small.  Then HE becomes responsible for our outcome, even if we make mistakes along the way.  He also wants us to continually “yearn” for Him – longing for His presence so much that we build our schedule around spending time alone with Him and His Word, with an eagerness to hear and to heed His voice.   

   God has challenged me to believe Him for increase right in the middle of this worldwide Coronavirus crisis.  I am challenging you to do the same thing, based upon God’s Word which says:  “I will make you prosper more than before.  Then you will know that I am the Lord.” (Ezekiel 36:11 NIV)  One translation says, “I will make you more prosperous than ever.” (GNT)  If God is our true Source, then we don’t have to wait until the economy improves before we pray for, and expect, increase.  The Amplified translation of the second half of this verse says, “Then you will know [with great confidence] that I am the Lord.”  God wants to build our confidence in Him and His promises by showing Himself strong on our behalf in the midst of chaos and uncertainty.

   Today, I challenge you to prove that God is your Source by asking Him to prosper you more than ever before – right here, right now, in Jesus’ name and for His glory! 

   Lord, I regret the times that I made anything or anyone but You my Source of supply.  Today, I ask that You abundantly meet all my needs throughout this crisis and beyond.  But don’t stop there, Lord.  Make me prosper more than ever before right here and now in ways that will get the attention of others and draw them to You.  Thank You that because You are my true Source, fear and worry will never again have a hold on me!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

Apr 12 20

Present Your Case to God

by J. M. Farro

   “If I were you, I would go to God and present my case to Him.  He does great things too marvelous to understand.  He performs countless miracles.” Job 5:8-9 NLT

   These two little verses are packed with divine wisdom and power – not just for this worldwide pandemic, but for our everyday lives.

   First, the Scripture instructs us to “go to God.”  It doesn’t tell us to go to our phone, our friends, our spouses, our doctors, or our banks.  The world’s way is to consult the “experts.”  But the truth is that we aren’t going to find a better expert than God – in any area.  So first, we should go to God, and allow Him to tell us who to go to next.

   Then, it says to “present [our] case to Him.”  In other words, get specific in your prayers.  Lay out the problem before God.  Tell Him what you would like to see happen in your situation.  Ask Him for the desires of your heart.  Don’t hold anything back.  If the tears come, let them flow freely.  God loves it when we get real with Him.

   Lastly, the text says:  “He does great things too marvelous to understand.  He performs countless miracles.”  This reminds us that God is still in the miracle-working business.  So we should ask for big things, and expect big answers to our prayers and petitions.  By doing this, we take the limits off of God, and we invite Him to work wonders in our lives and circumstances.  I love how the Scripture says that God “performs countless miracles.”  We aren’t restricted to expecting only a certain number of miracles from the Lord.  No, we can pray each and every day as though He is always ready and willing to do extraordinary things on our behalf.

   If God’s devoted ones are going to get through this Coronavirus crisis being powerful examples of His love, mercy, and might, then we are going to have to continually present our case to God, expecting Him to do things for us that we could never do on our own.  So ask often and ask freely, and let others be drawn to our great God through you!

   Lord, work in my heart so that my first response to a problem will be to go directly to You.  Teach me how to present my case to You – sincerely, truthfully, without holding anything back.  Show me how to take the limits off of You by inviting Your supernatural power into every area of my life, and into every one of my circumstances.  Thank You that as I cooperate with Your desire to work wonders on my behalf, others will take notice and want an eternal relationship with You!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

Apr 5 20

God is Getting Our Attention

by J. M. Farro

   “But by means of their suffering, He rescues those who suffer.  For He gets their attention through adversity.”  Job 36:15 NLT

   I believe that God is going to protect and provide for His devoted ones who look to Him during this pandemic.  I also believe that the fact that He is allowing this crisis means that He is trying to get our attention.  It’s unfortunate that, human nature being what it is, He often has to get our attention “through adversity,” as the verse above says. 

   I think it’s entirely possible that God is tired of competing with things like Netflix, social media, games, and sports for His children’s attention.  (Parents, can you relate?)  I have no doubts that this Coronavirus crisis is a wake-up call for Christians to stop giving so much of our attention to worldly things, and to start paying more attention to the things of God.  Our generation may be the most distracted generation of all time.  As believers, we should know better than to allow the devil to distract us from our God, as well as from our God-given purpose.

   I looked up the definition of the word, “attention,” and it says, “The regarding of someone or something as important.”  Every day, we prove what is important to us by giving it our attention.  The Bible makes it clear what God wants us to give our attention to most.  Proverbs 4:20-21 (AMP) says: “My son, pay attention to my words and be willing to learn; open your ears to my sayings.  Do not let them escape from your sight; keep them in the center of your heart.” (Proverbs 4:20-21 AMP)  Each and every day, the Lord has things that He wants to teach us and show us.  Only by paying attention to His Word, having a willingness to learn, and putting His principles into practice, can we receive all that He has in store for us.  And that can include health and healing.  The very next verse in this passage says, “For they are life to those who find them, and healing and health to all their flesh.” (v. 22)  Giving our attention to the Word of God ministers life and health to our whole being.  Glory to God!

   The Easy-to-Read translation of Job 36:15 (ERV) says: “God saves those who suffer by using their suffering.  He uses their troubles to speak in a way that makes them listen.”  Don’t miss the positive message in this verse.  Yes, it’s true that God is using adversity and trouble to get our attention.  But it’s also true that He is “using [our] suffering” for a good purpose, which includes drawing us closer to Him, and preparing us to minister to a lost and hurting world in a greater way than ever before.  God has something wonderful to say to you today.  Are you listening?

   Lord, please forgive me for the times that I have given more attention to worldly things than to You.  Make me a good and faithful steward of the time You give me on this earth.  Fill me with a hunger for Your Word and Your truth.  Make me “willing to learn” so that I won’t miss out on the extraordinary blessings, rewards, and opportunities You have for me right here and now.  Thank You that as I continually give my attention to You and Your Word, You will draw me closer to You, and You will mold me into a mighty world-changer for Christ!

   *Join the J. M. Farro Devotionals group on Facebook, and connect with J. M. Farro — with all-new weekday devotionals in addition to the standard weekly devotionals. You can access this group by clicking here!

   *For autographed books, check out the J. M. Farro ETSY Store at www.etsy.com/shop/JMFarro

   *Visit Amazon’s J. M. Farro page by clicking here!

   *Comments or Prayer Requests?  Please email Joanne (J. M.) Farro at jmf@jmfarro.com

Mar 29 20

You Are More Valuable to God

by J. M. Farro

   “God doesn’t abandon or forget even the small sparrow He has made.  How then could He forget or abandon you?  What about the seemingly minor issues of your life?  Do they matter to God?  Of course they do!  So you never need to worry, for you are more valuable to God than anything else in this world.”  Luke 12:6-7 TPT

   My husband, Joe, finally retired at the end of last year.  In our wildest dreams, we would never have imagined that we would be in the midst of a worldwide pandemic just two months after his retirement.  I have asked myself, “Didn’t God see this disaster coming before it reached us?  Isn’t His timing always perfect?  Isn’t He aware of our financial situation?”  To all of these questions, and many more, my spirit has answered a resounding, “Yes!” 

   Jesus said, “God doesn’t abandon or forget even the small sparrow He has made.  How then could He forget or abandon you?” (Luke 12:6 TPT)  I have read this verse in the Bible many times over the years, but this time, it made me cry.  Here was God saying that if He tenderly cared for the birds, He would certainly care for my husband and me, even in the midst of a world crisis.  Our needs are certainly no less important than those of a bird.

   This passage goes on to say:  “What about the seemingly minor issues of your life?  Do they matter to God?  Of course they do!” (v. 7)  The Lord deeply cares about every little detail of our lives.  He cares about the shortages we are seeing in this pandemic – even the most trivial ones.  We may feel silly talking about some of our “seemingly minor issues” to our friends and loved ones, but we should never hesitate to bring these matters before God.  This was one of the points that Jesus was trying to make in this teaching of His.  We dare not miss it.

   Next, Jesus says in this passage, “So you never need to worry, for you are more valuable to God than anything else in this world.”  Think about that – “you never need to worry,” and neither do I, because we are of the highest value to God.  Knowing this should cause us to go boldly before the Lord to ask for our needs, and even the desires of our hearts – not just during this Coronavirus crisis, but every day, all the rest of our days on this earth.  What would you most like to ask Him for today?

   Lord, during this world crisis and beyond, reassure me of Your intimate and eternal presence.  Remind me often that You care about even the “seemingly minor issues” that I deal with from day to day.  Teach me how to pray about all of my needs, as well as the desires of my heart.  Thank You that I “never need to worry” because I am of the utmost value to You!

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