By Joyce Meyer
Read by Jodi Carlisle
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Bestselling author Joyce Meyer shares her personal and intimate daily devotions, recorded over 365 days, that provides spiritual and practical guidance for her busy life.Each daily entry guides readers through a narrative of meditations, an uplifting declaration, and relevant scripture to encourage greater intimacy with God. Including spiritual revelations experienced by one of the world's leading Bible teachers, this book will renew readers' minds, offering assurance of God's complete love and desire for closeness with them.
I wrote this devotional over a period of three years, and it is a collection of encouragements that I sensed God speaking to my heart in my time with Him. I want to share them with you, and I pray they will encourage you in your own personal devotion time with God. Some of them are longer than others; some include quotes and confessions, while others include a prayer you may want to pray.
This devotional is close to my heart simply because it is taken from my own life. The daily devotions consist of things God has taught me at various times, as well as specific things He was dealing with me about during the time I wrote them. I believe you will sense the presence of God as you take time to let Him speak to you through His Word.
In fact, this is one of my prayers for you as you jump into this devotional: that you will fully understand that God loves you completely, and He wants to have a close personal relationship with you. So although these various entries are insights into my time with God, my intention is that they would be a starting point for you as you go deeper in your relationship with Him.
God’s Word is extremely powerful and it contains the power to renew our minds and change us into the image of Jesus Christ. I trust that as you read and study this devotional you will experience a new intimacy with our Lord.
God Is Your Vindicator
For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.”
HEBREWS 10:30 (NKJV)
In order to begin this new year properly, it is important not to enter it with any kind of bitterness or unforgiveness in our heart. It is unlikely that any one of us has made it through an entire year without being hurt by someone, but we only continue letting what they have done hurt us if we don’t forgive them.
Ask yourself if you are angry with anyone for anything, and if you are, ask God to help you forgive, forget, and let it go. God is our Vindicator and if we will allow Him to, He will repay us for every injustice that has been done to us. In my life, I have learned that anger is something we should never carry around with us. God’s Word says that we should not let the sun set on our anger, and if we do, then we give the devil a foothold in our lives (see Ephesians 4:26–27).
Do yourself a favor right now as you enter this new year and refuse to remain angry or bitter. God has good things planned for us, and we don’t want to miss them by refusing to let go of things in the past. Start the new year with a peaceful heart and be determined to enjoy each day.
Prayer: Father, help me forgive everyone who has hurt me in the past year, and if I have hurt anyone, please help them forgive me.
Trust God at All Times
Trust in, lean on, rely on, and have confidence in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts before Him. God is a refuge for us (a fortress and a high tower).
It is important to live with an abiding trust in God. That means we form a spiritual habit of trusting Him at all times, rather than just when we have a need or when a problem arises in our lives. As a parent, I would not be happy with my children if they only called or visited me when they needed something.
God is merciful and there are many times when He helps us although we have ignored Him, but it isn’t the way He wants our relationship with Him to be. God has been urging me to make this year a year when I come up higher in trusting Him at all times.
We all hope that each day contains nothing but good and exciting things and that it goes exactly as we had planned, but we know from experience that it rarely turns out that way—we may get stuck in traffic that makes us late for an important appointment, or someone may disappoint us or hurt us in some way. Making a decision to trust God totally, even before we have a challenge, is very helpful.
Prayer: Father, I trust You today for whatever this day brings. If this day contains difficulty that I did not expect, I put my trust in You now to take care of me and enable me to do what I need to do.
You Are Loved
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
ROMANS 5:8 (NIV)
God reminded me today of His unconditional love!
It is very important to begin each day knowing that you are loved! God loves you unconditionally, and His love is more valuable and important than anyone else’s. He doesn’t love us because we deserve it, but simply because He wants to.
As you receive God’s love freely, it will give you confidence and enable you to live life without fear. God’s perfect love casts out all fear and dread (see 1 John 4:18).
Perhaps you have known the pain of not being chosen. You were not picked for class president or asked to attend the party that everyone was going to. When we are left out it hurts, but the good news for you today is that God has chosen you! You are special to Him and His love for you will never end.
Prayer: Thank You, Father, for loving me. I receive Your love by faith today and ask that it will strengthen me.
One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in His temple.
PSALM 27:4 (NKJV)
My life changed when I learned to seek God and His presence as my primary need. To seek is to pursue, crave, and go after with all of your might. Always set aside time to be with God, to study His Word and simply rest in His presence. Learn to be conscious and aware of Him at all times.
We take time to seek what is truly important to us!
Speak this: I always spend time seeking God because His presence is my greatest need in life.
The Power of Simplicity
Truly I say to you, whoever does not accept and receive and welcome the kingdom of God like a little child [does] shall not in any way enter it [at all].
I wrote in my journal this morning, “Keep it simple.”
Life is certainly complicated and tends to be very stressful. I spent years praying that my circumstances would change so I could enjoy life, but finally realized I needed to change my approach to life. How about you? Do you feel the effects of stress and have a desire for simpler days? We often talk of the “good old days,” when life was simpler, but that doesn’t help us much today.
What we need is a change in our attitude and approach to life. Only foolish people think they can keep doing the same thing and get a different result. Learn how to think more simply. Don’t think about too many things at once, or allow your schedule to get overcrowded. Saying no when you need to will help you keep your schedule manageable. Lots of people want lots of things from us, but we don’t have to ruin our life and forfeit our joy to keep them happy. Take some time today to inventory your life. Ask yourself if you are enjoying it. If not, I urge you to make whatever adjustments are necessary in order to do so.
Prayer: Father, I love You very much, and I am grateful for the life You have given me. I want to enjoy life and use my time wisely, and I ask for Your help in making any changes that are necessary for me to live simply and powerfully.
The Beauty of Faith
Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass.
PSALM 37:5 (NKJV)
I see more clearly than ever before how simple and beautiful faith is and how self-effort complicates life and steals peace and joy. Man’s mind plans his own way (see Proverbs 16:9), but God’s ways are much higher than ours and they always work better (see Isaiah 55:9). I have finally learned that whenever I feel frustrated, it almost always indicates that I have trusted myself to do what only God can do. It is my signal to return to full faith in God and once again enjoy His peace.
Apart from faith we cannot please God (see Hebrews 11:6), and apart from Him, we can do nothing (see John 15:5). If you are worried or feel burdened by anything, I urge you to let it go and return to simple faith in God without delay. “Commit your way to the Lord” and “He shall bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:5). God already has a perfect plan for your situation, and as you rest in Him, He will work!
Prayer: Father, thank You that You are working in my life while I rest in You. I trust You to do the right thing at the right time. Help me walk in faith at all times.
I Am Protected
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall remain stable and fixed under the shadow of the Almighty [Whose power no foe can withstand].
Spending time with God protects us from the attacks of our enemies. When I remember this, it helps me feel safe, and that is something we all desire. Take a moment several times a day to simply turn your attention toward the Lord and say, “I know You are with me and that You are my Protector.” Then take a few moments to dwell in that thought and let it comfort you.
There is never a moment in your life when God is not with you.
Speak this: God is with me at all times. He will never forsake me, and He protects me from those who would harm me.
… With the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.
Jesus can heal you anywhere you hurt, and He delights in doing so. Whether you are hurting spiritually, physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, or financially, Jesus cares, and He wants to help you. God’s will is for you to be in a growing, intimate relationship with Him through Jesus. He wants you to be healthy and energetic, to have peace of mind, enjoy emotional stability, have plenty of good friends and family relationships, and have all your needs met abundantly, including being able to give generously to others in need.
If you are experiencing lack in any of these areas, God is reaching out to you today and asking you to trust Him for healing. He is our physician, and His Word is our medicine. Perhaps it has never occurred to you that Jesus wants to heal you, but He does, and I pray you will ask and receive that your joy might be full (see John 16:24). You have not because you ask not (see James 4:2), so ask boldly and stand firm on the promises of God. Take your pain to Jesus, and through faith and patience you will be made whole.
Prayer: Father, heal me everywhere I hurt. I ask in Jesus’ name that I might experience Your wholeness in my life. I receive healing by faith, and I declare that Your healing power is working in me right now!
And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.
2 CORINTHIANS 9:8 (NKJV)
When I feel like my “get up and go” has got up and gone, I purposely stir myself up through aggressive expectation!
God is the God of abundance, the one who wants us to live a large, free, and full life. Dare to have big faith, big plans, and big ideas, because God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above and beyond all that you can ever dare to hope, ask, or think (see Ephesians 3:20). It is time to start asking God to do greater things! Have great expectations!
Don’t be afraid to ask God for big things. The truth is that you cannot ask for too much as long as your heart is right and you are willing to not only be blessed by God, but also be a blessing everywhere you go. The Bible says God is searching for those in whom He can show Himself strong (see 2 Chronicles 16:9), and it can be you if you are willing to believe. You don’t need a perfect performance to qualify for God’s best; just love Him with all your heart. Don’t settle for less than the best life that you can have.
Prayer: Amazing Heavenly Father, I am humbled that You want to offer me an abundant life. I know that I don’t deserve Your goodness, but I do ask in faith that You would do great things for and through me. Thank You!
Wisdom cries aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the markets.
Wisdom stands at the intersection of every decision crying out, “Follow me.” Wisdom always does now what it will be satisfied with later. Don’t live in regret due to following emotions, popular opinion, or your own will. Wisdom will promote you, prosper you, and give you peace and joy.
Are you at a point of needing to make a decision? Obviously, we make decisions all the time, and they are all important, but some are more important than others. I believe that if you are facing a major decision, you need to let your emotions subside before you decide! Make the wise choice. Wisdom is first of all pure and then it is peace-loving, and I urge you to wait on wisdom so you can live without regret.
Prayer: Father, I commit to follow wisdom in all my decisions. Please make the path that You want me to take very clear. Thank You!
Hidden from Harm
In the secret place of Your presence You hide them from the plots of men; You keep them secretly in Your pavilion from the strife of tongues.
Unkind words spoken to us hurt, but this Scripture promises that if we spend time in God’s presence, we will be protected from their effect. Even though evil words may be spoken against us, God will shield us and comfort us as we spend time with Him.
God’s words are the ones that really matter anyway, and He always says good things about us.
God’s words are more powerful than anyone else’s.
Speak this: God’s words protect me from evil words spoken against me, and His words are louder to me than anyone else’s.
The man of many friends [a friend of all the world] will prove himself a bad friend, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Everyone wants friends, and God wants us to have them. He encourages relationship throughout His Word, but it is important to have healthy, safe, and godly relationships. Some relationships are not safe for us because we are being used, manipulated, and taken advantage of. God wants us to pray for and love everyone, even our enemies, but that doesn’t mean we should let people take advantage of us. I personally am not interested in having what I call one-sided relationships in which I do all the giving and the other party does all the taking.
God does use us at times in the lives of selfish, self-centered people, and we do make sacrifices, but there is a point at which we are hurting people if we let them manipulate us for their own pleasure. Stand up for yourself and always be willing to confront unhealthy relationships. Speak the truth in love (see Ephesians 4:15). You are very valuable and entitled to have good friends who will respect and honor you properly.
Prayer: Father, help me always be a good friend. I ask You for safe, healthy relationships in which I can flourish and grow. Amen.
Wait on God
… For You [You only and altogether] do I wait [expectantly] all the day long.
I am a person of action, and when there is a problem, I am ready to take action, but sometimes I make the situation worse because I didn’t wait to get God’s plan. Being aggressive has many benefits, but it can also cause problems if we are acting independently of God.
I am reminded today of the importance of maintaining an attitude of waiting on God. I am not suggesting inactivity but rather the highest form of spiritual activity, that of trusting God in every area of life. Wait on Him for supplies, for strength, healing, wisdom, and opportunity. Wait on God to reveal Himself to you and to show you His amazing favor. God is waiting to be good to us, and He looks for those who are waiting on Him (Isaiah 30:18).
Waiting on God is mostly an attitude of the heart. One that is fully aware that God is everything and we are nothing without Him. We should pray and refuse to take action without assurance that God is leading. Go to Him as early as possible each day, which is the moment you wake up. He is always near, and you need no special preparation to begin fellowshipping with Him. Always remember that God loves you unconditionally and is with you at all times.
Prayer: Father God, I desire to form a habit of waiting on You all throughout the day. Help me not to rush ahead into activities and decisions without acknowledging You. Thank You for Your presence.
Time Is Valuable
So teach us to number our days, that we may get us a heart of wisdom.
Spending time with God regularly is the foundation of living the victorious life that Jesus died to give us. Very often, people say that they want to spend more time with God, but they simply don’t have the time. We all have the same amount of time, but not everyone chooses to use it in the best way.
You can be as close to God as you want to be; it all depends on how much time you are willing to put into seeking Him and learning His ways.
Are you investing or wasting your time?
Speak this: I have as much time as anyone else, and I will make changes in how I use it so I can seek God regularly.
Since all these things are thus in the process of being dissolved, what kind of person ought [each of] you to be [in the meanwhile] in consecrated and holy behavior and devout and godly qualities.
2 PETER 3:11
This is a special day because it is one in which we have an opportunity to grow in holy behavior. We grow in holiness as we fellowship with God and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit, not as we work hard to follow religious rules and regulations. Spiritual disciplines are important, but we should avoid letting them become laws. For example, it is good to read and study God’s Word as often as possible, but there is no law that says if you miss a day that God is mad at you or disappointed in you.
The way to grow in holiness is simple—just be committed to following peace. If you have peace about your thoughts, words, and behaviors, then continue in them, but if you sense an uncomfortable feeling in your spirit, or a lack of peace, it may well be a nudge from the Holy Spirit that your action isn’t what it should be. The more you follow God’s lead, the happier you will be. When God gives us another day to live, it is a valuable gift, and one that should be used for His glory and honor.
Prayer: Father, thank You that today I can grow in holiness. I ask You to help me sense what You approve of and what You do not approve of, and to live accordingly.
Make Each Day Count
To everything there is a season, and a time for every matter or purpose under heaven.
ECCLESIASTES 3:1 (AMPC)
We all have the same amount of time each day, but some people seem to do more with theirs than others do. You might say that we all “spend” our time. We spend it doing things that will bear good fruit, or we spend it on activities that are totally useless. I think it is wise to occasionally take an inventory of what we are spending our time on and to make adjustments if they are needed. Today would be a good day to spend some time thinking about how you are spending your time!
Time is a gift, and the older you get the more you realize that. I believe we could avoid most of the stress we experience if we simply use the time we have wisely. Don’t waste time doing frivolous things that are not important and then be frustrated when you don’t have enough time to do the things that must be done. Always remember that when your time is spent, you can never get it back, so spend it on something that is an investment and pays good dividends.
Prayer: Father, I thank You for time, and I repent for all of it I have wasted in my life. Grant me wisdom concerning what I choose to do with my days, and help me make each one really count for something good.
My times are in Your hands; deliver me from the hands of my foes and those who pursue me and persecute me.
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