Saturday, January 1, 2011

Doubly Blessed With Life

"Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, and instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double: Everlasting joy shall be theirs." Isaiah 61:7

First of all, we would like to wish all of our friends a very Happy New Year; may this be your very best year ever!

I wanted to write a special devo today to all of you ex-party-ers out there. If you were anything like me before meeting Jesus, then you know what New Year's Eve meant to us. It was party till you puked and then party some more until you got in some sort of trouble. Well, I've got some good news for you; this verse is for us.

Because we've made Jesus Lord of our lives, we no longer have to have wake up New Year's Day, lying there in bed or on the couch—as the foggy confusion of the night before begins to clear up, realizing that once again we've blown it and have acted like idiots. It's that moment when the temporary joy of the night before is replaced by an overwhelming sense of shame of your behavior, and instead of starting out the new year with confidence and excitement—you just feel miserable about yourself. Then, of course, you check your wallet and realize that once again you must have emptied it buying rounds of drinks for all of your new "so-called" friends. So you begin the year by feeling crummy, ashamed, hung over, and broke…wow, what fun, huh? You getting the picture, or am I just talking to myself?

But then Jesus came into our lives…the One who forgives us and changes us from the inside out. I am so thankful that the old life is long gone and not just gone, but replaced by the real life, a life of double. Remember, He's the one who said in John 10:10, "…I have come that you might have life and it MORE abundantly." That sounds like double dipping into life to me. Here in Isaiah He promises us that our shame is replaced with double honor, that our confusion is replaced with double peace, that our lack is replaced by double possessions, and that our sadness is replaced with double joy.

Now that's something we can celebrate every day, and not just once a year. So, thank You, Jesus, for loving us enough to lay down Your life so that we could experience the life of double!

"Father, we thank You for helping us to see the kind of life You have for us. The life of double—double honor, double peace, double possessions, and double joy. I choose to speak this over my life, my family, my work, my church, my friends, over every area of my life. I call 2011 my year of double! In Jesus' Name. Amen."

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