Real Christians Look on the Heart

If we look down on people who aren’t fashionable, wealthy, or educated, we’re snobs.

If we look down on people of different races, countries, and ethnicity, we’re bigots.

We should never use worldly criteria to approve or disapprove of people. We should look at a person's heart and honor those with good hearts like our Lord does:

"The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart." 1 Samuel 16:7

One day, rich and poor, educated and uneducated, from every tribe and nation will worship our Lord together (Revelation 7:9). 

So let's cleanse our hearts of all snobbery and bigotry, especially within the Body of Christ (James 2:1-13).
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More 1-minute devotions on this subject:
Sometimes We Miss a Man's Heart explains what God saw in the hearts of David's brothers
5 Reasons God Searches Hearts

The Benefit of Godly Examples, Especially Christ's

The Benefit of Godly Examples, Especially Christ's - John 13:15
Examples are extremely helpful.

Recently, a friend repaired our washing machine by looking at an example of the repair on Youtube, saving us hundreds of dollars. Seeing an actual example of the repair was easier than simply reading instructions.

This is one reason I enjoy Christian biographies. Biblical principles come alive in the lives of God's faithful saints, giving us examples to follow.

Christian friends can also be godly examples, just as ungodly friends can be corrupting examples (1 Corinthians 15:33).

Of course, our perfect example is Christ. 

In John 13:15, Jesus said: “I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.”

Ephesians 5:1-2 tells us to “follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children.”

Philippians 2:5 tells us to “have the same mindset as Christ Jesus” in our relationships with each other, and 1 Thessalonians 1:6 encourages us to become “imitators” of the Lord.

There’s no doubt about it, examples in our lives matter. Let’s choose the best ones (1 John 2:6).
Note:
On page 149 of The Shack, The Shack’s jesus says, “Seriously, my life was not meant to be an example to copy. Being my follower is not trying to ‘be like Jesus’...” 
Many Christians have embraced The Shack as a way to better understand our relationship with Jesus, but this and other errors give a false view of that relationship. See The Shack’s Errors.

Contentment Comes from Proper Perspective

Contentment Comes from Proper Perspective - 1 Timothy 6:6
It can be challenging to be surrounded by people more wealthy and prestigious than we are because we often start measuring our lives by their standards and become discontent.

There's always something we can buy that we don't have, some trip we can take that we haven't taken, some luxury or convenience we want but don't need.

That's why it's important to see our lives in perspective to the rest of the world.

Did you know:
“If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep ...you are more comfortable than 75% of the people in this world.”(1)

After we see our lives in perspective to the rest of the world, we also need to see our lives in perspective to the Gospel: For "godliness with contentment is itself great wealth." (1 Tim.6:6, NLT)

Let's give our hearts to the pursuit of spiritual wealth.

based on devotion first published in 2012 called "Feeling Rich," copyright Gail Burton Purath
(1) This quote from If the World Were a Village of 100

Contentment Comes from Proper Perspective - 1 Timothy 6:6

Don't Listen to "Weedy Messages" in the Church

Matthew 13 warns us about "weeds" in the church. We must know and teach Scripture.
A recent survey polled practicing Christians who “consider their faith very important in their life.”

Twenty-eight percent agreed with this statement:
“All people pray to the same god or spirit, no matter what name they use for that spiritual being.”  

(See: 1 Corinthians 10:20 & Are There Many Ways to Heaven?)

Twenty-percent agreed with this statement:
“Meaning and purpose come from working hard to earn as much as possible so you can make the most of life.” 

(See: Luke 12:15Less is More)

Twenty-three percent agreed with this statement:
“What is morally right or wrong depends on what an individual believes.”

(See: Psalm 119:11 & Thou Shalt Not....Maybe)

This means approximately 25% of the people in our churches are believing significant errors. Some of these are confused believers, but not all. 

Christ warns us in Matthew 13 that there will be “weeds” in our churches, closely resembling wholesome wheat, but planted by Satan.

Satan’s purposes are always to damage and destroy God’s purposes, and we should be aware and prepared.

Now, more than ever, we must be like Bereans, checking every teaching with Scripture. (See Politely Skeptical).
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Would you like to do a short Bible study addressing these three errors in belief? Check out today's Bite Size Bible Study.
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5 Ways To Rid Your Thoughts of Sinful Desires

5 Ways To Rid Your Thoughts of Sinful Desires
James 1:13-15 explains temptation:
“each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”

Temptation begins when we “conceive” sinful desires: entertain, enjoy, and contemplate those desires in our thoughts. 

Next we act on the desires we’ve “nourished.” 

Finally, we indulge those desires until we sear our conscience and no longer know right from wrong (1 Timothy 4:2; Ephesians 4:19).

It’s important to immediately identify sinful thoughts and refuse to entertain them. Then we need to replace them with wholesome thoughts in one or all of these ways (Philippians 4:8):

1. Seek God’s help (Matthew 6:13).

2. Recite memorized Bible verses (Psalm 119:11).

3. Read the Bible (Hebrews 4:12).

4. Count our blessings (Philippians 4:6).

5. Besides reading and reciting God's Word when tempted, we should read, study, and memorize it daily to transform our minds (Romans 12:2).

Our thoughts can corrupt us or transform us. Let’s choose to be transformed!
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These devotions also provide help for overcoming bad thought patterns:
Taking Thoughts Captive
Dirty Thoughts
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