Category Archives: Devotional

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus!

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus!
Written by Rhovonda L. Brown
(Originally posted on marthamaryministries.com: 1/21/13)
“Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Phil. 2:9-11, NLT)
Jesus! There’s just something about that name!”
How wonderful is the name Jesus?! How sweet is that wonderful name?! That name makes demons tremble! At the name of Jesus, the lame walks. At that marvelous name of Jesus, the sick are healed! At that name, the dead are raised! Things happen at the name of Jesus!
At that wonderful name, the Bible says, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess (admit) that He is Lord! Regardless of what we may have thought. Regardless of what idea or false notion we may have or have had about Jesus, regardless of what you or I believe, all will bow down to King Jesus! All will confess that Jesus is Lord! Everyone will acknowledge Jesus as Lord! He is GOD! He is the Holy One!
What a sight to see!! What a day to behold!! What an awesome worship experience that will be when every creature in Heaven, on earth, and under earth bow in reverence to the Mighty King! All will say, “Jesus is Lord!!”
If you haven’t already given your life to Christ, now is the time! Surrender your life to Him today! Allow King Jesus to be your Lord and Savior! Make the choice and surrender now! He wants to make you brand new! In fact, He will make you brand new (2 Cor. 5:17). He wants to do a new thing in your life (Isa. 43:19). He wants to give you a new birth (John 3:1-21), a new life, a life of purpose and meaning! Right now, give your life to Christ! Follow Him.
If you have given your life to Christ, Praise God!! You can be a witness to the fact that God makes us brand new! We are new creatures! As Christians, we can stand up and be a witness for God, telling others that a new life in Christ means a new start! When we give our lives to Christ He gives us new purpose and our life has new meaning. When we surrender our lives to Christ, He’ll show us the reason for our existence. It’s because of Him we live, move, and have our being!
“so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;  for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ (Acts 17:27-28, NKJV)
Jesus invites all of us to have a new life in Him. No one needs to wait to invited Jesus into his/her heart because on that Day of Judgment it will be too late. Let’s surrender everything over to Him! Surrender to His will! Surrender to Christ today! Surrender our lives to Jesus! Open up our hearts today! Let us fall down on our knees and acknowledge Jesus as King of everything.
“because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:31, NKJV)
If you haven’t already, surrender today. Do it right now before it’s too late! If we don’t acknowledge Him today, we will do it on that great day! ………But by then, it’ll be too late.
During your quiet time MEDITATE on today’s scriptures. Be encouraged in knowing God answers prayers, His ways are perfect and His thoughts for you are beautiful!
LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM TOGETHER & IMPACT THE WORLD!
Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.
No portion of Martha & Mary Ministries, Walking in Freedom!™ Devotionals may be reproduced, stored in any electronic system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission from the author. Brief quotations may be used in literary reviews.

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Tuesday Morning Prayer

Happy LOVE & Black History Month!
Greetings and welcome new Freedom Walkers! Shout outs to all of you!

We are making preparations for our Prayer Breakfast this Saturday. Yes! The excitement is in the air! To help us get mentally, spiritually and emotionally ready for what God will do on that great day, I’ll be sharing some of my past devotional prayers. These prayers will also be included in my upcoming book, Tuesday Morning Prayer. Look at God!!

I pray today’s Walking in Freedom! Devotional prayer will motivate and inspire you to press your way into the presence of the Lord.

Happy Tuesday!
If you haven’t had a chance to register for Saturday’s event, no worries. You still have time! Use the link below to register online or you may register at the door on the day of the event between 9:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

 

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Prayer Breakfast

 


 

Tuesday Morning Prayer

“But the LORD watches over those who fear him,
those who rely on his unfailing love.
He rescues them from death
and keeps them alive in times of famine.”
(Ps. 33:18-19, NLT)

Most precious and loving Father, in the name of Jesus, we come before Your presence with thanksgiving and praise. We want to thank You and praise You for allowing us to see a brand new day and a brand New Year. We praise You and thank You for Your many, many blessings! We praise and thank You for what You’re already doing in 20136

God, on day 23 of February 2016, You’re already showing up and showing out!! Lord, we thank You!! Not only that, but we praise You for Jesus Christ! Thank You for allowing Him to live in our hearts! He’s the reason why we live, move, and have our being! He’s the reason why we’re clothed and in our right mind! Father, we’re so grateful for Your Son! We know that without Jesus, we’d be lost like a ship lost out at sea, with no destination, no sense of purpose, being carried away, tossed to and fro upon the waves of destruction. Thank You, Jesus, for finding us! We praise You, Jesus, for keeping us!

Father, we appreciate all that You do. You do wonderful and great things for us. You protect us, look after us, care for us, and love us! As a Loving Father, You never give up on us. You continue to show us Your Great Love, and Your Great Mercy. Thank You for Mercy and thank You for Grace! Lord, we thank You for being so patient with us and always giving us another chance. Over and over again, You forgive us! We thank You for never getting tired of our mess. God, we thank You for knowing us, but still loving us. We thank You for the thoughts You have toward us! You think good thoughts about us, not evil. Father, we love You! We appreciate Your amazing love! Your unfailing love never runs out!

Lord, we make our petition unto You. Lord, we need You today and every day! Lord, we need You to lead us. Be our guide, Father. Lead the way. Lord, crucify our flesh today and Holy Spirit reign over us. Be Lord over our lives. Father, we ask that You would help us allow the Spirit Man to govern our walk today and every day. Lord, help us to surrender our will to Your Will. Help us to walk not according to our flesh, but according to Your Spirit. Lord, we yield to the fruit of the Spirit. We yield and surrender to love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23).

Loving Father, we asked that You would crucify our flesh and let Your love abide. Crucify our flesh and help us to celebrate the joy of just knowing You. Crucify our flesh and let the Prince of Peace fill our hearts and mind. Master, give us patience to wait on You; give us patience with ourselves and with others. Father, show us how to be kind toward everyone we come in contact with. Lord, fill us up with Your goodness so that others may see You in us. Lord God, we ask that You would increase our faith, help us to be more committed to You, committed to Your work and to Your ministry. Help us to have faith in You, never doubting Your Word.

Merciful God, show us how to show mercy to others. Give us the spirit of humility, and teach us how to be selfless. We don’t want to live a selfish life anymore. Perfect God, give us that quiet spirit that will cause us to think before we speak and think before we act. Show us how to have self-restraint and be disciplined in our Christian walk. Father, we live for You and not for ourselves. Father, we crucify our flesh so that we can please You.

Heavenly Father, show us how to live a life that’s filled with praise, worship, and thanksgiving unto You. Strengthen our prayer life so that we may commune with You daily. Father God, we ask that You would bless us indeed! Expand our territory. Please be with us in all that we do, and keep us from evil, from all trouble and pain.

Now, Father, we continue to be thankful and be hopeful for what You’re doing and what You’re about to do. We thank You for what’s to come in 2016! In every situation that we face today, may we see the good in it and not the bad. May we not complain, whine, or find fault, but may we remain thankful and hopeful in You. For You are a loving Father who causes all things to work for our good (Rom 8:28). Lord, this is our petition, and we pray that You’ll grant us our request just like You did for Jabez (1 Chron. 4:9-10).

We ask it all in Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

“We put our hope in the LORD.
He is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
Let your unfailing love surround us, LORD,
for our hope is in you alone.”
(Ps. 33:20-22, NLT)
During your quiet time MEDITATE on today’s scriptures. Be motivated by today’s VIDEO. Allow all these things to encourage you to walk in freedom!
LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM TOGETHER & IMPACT THE WORLD!
Rhovonda L. Brown is speaker and author of two bestsellers, Walking in Freedom!: A Thirty-Day Devotional Journey for Women and At Least Say, “Thank You!”: An 8-Day Devotional Plan for a Grateful Heart.

Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.

Image Credit: graur razvan ionut via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Five Dollars

[Remember] this: he who sows sparingly and grudgingly will also reap sparingly and grudgingly, and he who sows generously [that blessings may come to someone] will also reap generously and with blessings. (2 Cor. 9:6, AMP)

This morning, I was in the mood for some coffee and a pumpkin scone, and was willing to wait in this long (Ridiculous!) line at Starbucks. So, I waited. And waited and waited to spend my little bit on breakfast. Come to think of it, my truck probably wasted close to $10 in gas as I anticipated satisfying my sweet tooth.

It was finally my turn at the drive-thru window. I opted using my debit card instead of cash, and happily drove off excited about enjoying my pumpkin scone and fresh hot coffee. Normally, with a swift left turn, I’m back home within minutes. But not today. For some reason I decided to take the long route, even though I had been waiting in the longest line EVER. I have no idea why I went that way…..well, I do now.

This alternate route lead me directly into traffic. While waiting, once again, in traffic, at the light for metro rail, a man walks pass my truck holding a sign that reads, “25¢ goes a long way.” He wore a camouflage fishermen hat with the adjustable chin strap, baggie black gym shorts, dingy or dirty white t-shirt, and flip-flop shoes that seemed to be hiding underneath the heel of his large feet. Yeah. Out of habit, I did a quick inventory. From head to toe I believe I can determine if a person is truly homeless, a beggar, or just a con artist. Does this theory shed some truth? Not really.

Anyway, his stride decreased each time he passes a vehicle, as if to give drivers time to decide whether he and/or his cause was worthy of their coins. When he came close to my truck I looked at him in his face, then turned my head away. So he kept walking and I kept my eye on him, looking through my side and rear view mirror. These days you can never be too careful. However, I noticed the driver behind me do the same – cautiously observe this man.

After doing his initial walk through, with no donors, the homeless man (I guess that’s what he was) turned around and walked past the cars again. This time, the guarded driver behind me raised down his window and gave. At that moment, I heard, “Where’s that five dollars you had?” Huh? “You were going to give five dollars to Starbucks. Now, give it to him.” Reluctant to be obedient, I dug in my purse, fumbling through my last bit of cash to find five dollars. Quickly letting my window down, I blew my horn, but he didn’t turn around. He didn’t see me. I blew it again louder, waving the five dollar bill in my hand to get his attention. Finally, he turned around, hurriedly took the cash, smiled and said, “God bless you.”

You want to know how I felt afterwards. Conned. I immediately felt I had just been had. Like I was waiting for the man to say, “Gotcha!” Then, I said to myself, I don’t know anything about that man. Maybe he’ll use that five dollars to buy a hot meal. Maybe he’ll spend it on drugs. Maybe he was homeless. Maybe he was a beggar or just a straight up con artist doing whatever he can to get over on people. Maybe, maybe, maybe. I didn’t have a clue what this stranger would do with the money he collects on the streets.

The light turned green. I drove passed him, and he gave me a genuine smiled and waved goodbye.

You know what amazes me? I was willing to wait in a long line to give five dollars away to company whose annual revenue is over 13 billion dollars. I’m amazed that without giving it a second thought I’ll spend $20 on a meal at Chick-fil-a, and their lines are always long! On the other hand, most times, I will blatantly refuse to give my change to a beggar on the street. Why? Because I selfishly question how he or she will spend my money. But as a consumer, waiting in a fast food line, this thought never comes up.

Nope, not on a soap box today. Yet I’m grateful to God for showing me my reflection. He made it obvious that I miss out on countless opportunities to be a blessing to a stranger on the street. I fail to give my little or my last on the grounds that this person may not be legit. Shame on me, especially when I’m told to be a cheerful giver (2 Cor. 9:7).

Earlier this morning, I was tweeted a YouTube video about these guys who randomly asked strangers for food. I was surprised, well not really, by the people’s response. This video prompt me to post “Let’s not pass up our opportunity to be a blessing to someone else (Lk. 17:11-19)”, except God didn’t allow me to post it. Unbeknownst to me, (God has such a sense of humor!) He wanted to present me with an opportunity to either eat my words or practice what I preached. Honestly, I was oh so close at eating my words. I almost missed out on my chance to give.

Prayer: Father, please forgive me. On many occasions, I shamelessly look the other way when given a chance to show benevolence to Your people. Not only have You called me to share words of encouragement, but You’ve called me to show acts of compassion and generosity too. I’m so sorry for missing opportunities to be a blessing to those in need. Teach me how to be a cheerful giver, giving bountifully expecting nothing in return. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

 MEDITATION AND QUIET TIME 

ENCOURAGING YOU TO WALK IN FREEDOM!

Rhovonda L. Brown is speaker and author of two bestsellers, Walking in Freedom!: A Thirty-Day Devotional Journey for Women and At Least Say, “Thank You!”: An 8-Day Devotional Plan for a Grateful Heart. 

Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.

The Week He Change Everything: A Bad Friday Turned Good

“‘Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, saying, ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.’” (Luke 24:5-7 NKJV)

Jesus predicted everything that would happen to Him. He predicted how He would be betrayed by one of the twelve. He predicted how His disciples would stumble because of what was going to happen to Him that night and how they would desert Him. He predicted how Peter, the Rock, would deny Him. Jesus predicted His death. The things that Jesus predicted were way too heavy for His disciples and it troubled them. Their week of festivities and celebrations was coming fast to an end.

At the beginning of the week everything was wonderful. Their King made His triumphal entry into the city. He was going to overthrow their evil government. Their King was going to establish His kingdom and take His rightful place on His throne. Their King was going to make everything right, and now, He was talking about leaving them! Now, He’s talking about dying. It wasn’t supposed to happen this way. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. This isn’t how they imagined it. This was supposed to be a time of celebration! This was supposed to be a time of victory! Their King, Son of David, and the One they shouted “Hosanna, Hosanna!” to was supposed to save them.

No, this was not how it was supposed to be. This was supposed to be the week that Jesus would change everything, but now this week was turning into a horrible nightmare.

They came for Jesus with their clubs and their swords, like He was a thief. They laid hands on Him. Jesus could have stopped them, but He didn’t.

“But Jesus said to him, ‘Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?’ In that hour Jesus said to the multitudes, ‘Have you come out, as against a robber, with swords and clubs to take Me? I sat daily with you, teaching in the temple, and you did not seize Me. But all this was done that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled.’ Then all the disciples forsook Him and fled.” (Matt. 26:52-56 NKJV)

They arrested Him and marched Him from judgment hall to judgment hall. They gave false testimony and called false witnesses. They spat in His face. They slapped Him and beat Him. They ridiculed Him. They yelled, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!!” With a crown of thorns around His head, He carried His cross up a hill called Golgotha. They nailed Him to a cross and He hung there. He died between two thieves. They pierced Him in His side and immediately blood and water came running down (John 19). He was placed in a tomb that was not His own. The King was dead, and dread and gloom surrounded the disciples.

But the disciples had it all wrong. They thought all was lost. They thought all their hopes and dreams had vanished. They had it all wrong. Jesus was and is the true King. Jesus did make all things right. Jesus had to fulfill the scriptures so that the human race could be brought back to God. Jesus had to die and be buried in the grave. But that’s not how the story ends. Praise God!

On the third day, Jesus got up! On the third day, the tomb was empty! Jesus took off His grave clothes, folded them neatly in the tomb, and arose from the dead. Jesus conquered Hell and the grave. The disciples bad Friday turned into something wonderful. Their sorrows turned into joy! Jesus came and changed everything!

Today, we celebrate Good Friday. He accomplished everything He said He would. Jesus is alive! He’s not dead. We now have victory. Now, we can really celebrate. Now, our sorrow has turned into joy. All that was wrong, Jesus made right. Jesus came to save us and unite us back to God.

Believers, celebrate with me! It’s Good Friday! Jesus is alive! He reigns in Majesty. In Power. In Wisdom. In Honor, and in Glory. Let the celebrations go on and on and on!

Happy Good Friday!!

REFLECTION

“‘Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, saying, ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.’” (Luke 24:5-7 NKJV)

QUIET TIME

Encouraging You to Walk in Freedom! ™

Rhovonda L. Brown is speaker and author of two bestsellers, Walking in Freedom!: A Thirty-Day Devotional Journey for Women and At Least Say, “Thank You!”: An 8-Day Devotional Plan for a Grateful Heart. 

Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.

*COMING SOON! Soon you’ll be able to enjoy Rhovonda’s tribute to Easter ebook.

Unexpected Guest

An unexpected guest always shows up at the wrong time. He comes when the house is a mess and no one is dressed. There’s no food cooked and nothing in the fridge. Out of the blue, in the wee hours of the night, “fo day in da morn′in” (is what the old people would say), he unexpectedly appears.

He shows up like he owns the place. Without warning, giving no time for the family to prepare, the unexpected guest arrives on our doorsteps. He isn’t considerate, doesn’t plan ahead or calls before he comes. He’s not concerned about how the master of the house may feel about him dropping by or how the visit will be an inconvenience. None of that is on his mind. He is not thinking about how his visit will cause such a ruckus. He’s only focusing on doing what he needs to do and accomplishing what must be done. I call it just plain selfish and rude! How dare he show up uninvited….. and baring bad news!

At 3am, an unexpected guest showed up on my family’s doorstep. Knocking hard on the door and demanding to come in. We couldn’t stop him. It was out of our control. He barged in before we had time to open the door and welcome him in. He didn’t care that I was sleeping real good in my warm bed. He wasn’t concerned that I was not in the mood for any company nor was he bothered by the fact that I was oblivious to the reason he was there. After he shared the bad news, I think he got a kick out of seeing me struggle for words to say. With no explanations or apologies, the unexpected guest made himself comfortable as he went about his business. With papers in hand, he came for the life of my grandfather.

By now, you would think that I’m used to this guest. One may wonder, why am I caught off guard? For I’ve been here before and I’ll be here again. Nevertheless, every time, each time, uninvited, Death unexpectedly shows up at my front door.

So here I am, as before asking the same question, “Why didn’t I?”

Death came today. At the appointed time, he arrived at my grandfather’s door (Eccl. 3:2). He offered no condolences. Didn’t say a word, but did what he was assigned to do. Every being must go through the threshold of Death; since the day Adam and Eve sinned, Death was given that responsibility (Gen. 3). Though it stings, it hurts, and can be frightening, most assuredly you and I will die (Eccl. 3:20, Gen. 3:19).

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Heb. 9:27, NKJV)

Whether we try to run from it, delay it, avoid it, or ignore it, Death will come knocking. In your mind, he’ll show up at the wrong time, but it will be the right time. With the death certificate signed by the Creator, he carries our souls to judgement (Rev. 20:10-15). Either we’ll be condemned to eternal damnation because we’ve rejected Christ or welcomed into God’s arms of grace to spend forever and always in paradise with our Savior Jesus Christ. For our names were written in the Book of Life (Rev. 20:15)!

My sister, dealing with the loss of a loved one? Weep if you must, knowing God shall wipe away every tear that you shed (Rev. 7:17, 21:4). Go ahead and cry. It’s alright. As a believer, we understand we’re not crying as if we have no hope (1 Thess. 4:13-18). God comforts those who mourn (Matt. 5:4). Most importantly, “For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died” (1 Thess. 4:14, NLT).

But let me tell you something wonderful, a mystery I’ll probably never fully understand. We’re not all going to die—but we are all going to be changed. You hear a blast to end all blasts from a trumpet, and in the time that you look up and blink your eyes—it’s over. On signal from that trumpet from heaven, the dead will be up and out of their graves, beyond the reach of death, never to die again. At the same moment and in the same way, we’ll all be changed. In the resurrection scheme of things, this has to happen: everything perishable taken off the shelves and replaced by the imperishable, this mortal replaced by the immortal. Then the saying will come true:
Death swallowed by triumphant Life!
Who got the last word, oh, Death?
Oh, Death, who’s afraid of you now?
It was sin that made death so frightening and law-code guilt that gave sin its leverage, its destructive power. But now in a single victorious stroke of Life, all three—sin, guilt, death—are gone, the gift of our Master, Jesus Christ. Thank God! (1 Cor. 15:51-57, MSG)

Encouraging You to Walk in Freedom! ™

Originally posted 3/19/15.

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