VIDEO Cost Comparison

So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life.” Mark 10:29-30


We usually hear it in the context of athletics, but it applies to all areas of life: “No pain, no gain.” We tell our children that in order to make an A in history, they will have to sacrifice time spent on other activities and commit to studying. In order to have funds to live on in retirement, we have to sacrifice purchases now and commit to saving.

Jesus had to convince His early followers that any cost to following Him would be rewarded later: “a hundredfold now in this time… and in the age to come, eternal life.” Such a commitment required trust. To prioritize Jesus over family and property was a big decision. But Jesus was proving Himself to be trustworthy, and His early disciples took Him at His word.

 When the cost of following Jesus seems to go up, consider the cost in light of the return.

And all thou spendest, Jesus will repay. Mary Ann Thompson

God’s Perspective on Spiritual Wealth (Mark 10:23-31)

Known by God

[Mary] turned toward him and cried out . . . “Rabboni!” John 20:16

After two brothers were separated by adoption, a DNA test helped to reunite them almost twenty years later. When Kieron texted Vincent, the man he believed was his brother, Vincent thought, Who is this stranger? When Kieron asked him what name he’d been given at birth, he immediately answered, “Tyler.” Then he knew they were brothers. He was recognized by his name!

Consider how a name plays a key role in the Easter story. As it unfolds, Mary Magdalene comes to Christ’s tomb, and she weeps when she finds His body missing. “Woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asks (John 20:15). She didn’t recognize Him, however, until He spoke her name: “Mary” (v. 16).

Hearing Him say it, she “cried out in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (Which means ‘Teacher’)” (v. 16). Her reaction expresses the joy believers in Jesus feel on Easter morning, recognizing that our risen Christ conquered death for all, knowing each of us as His children. As He told Mary, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God” (v. 17).

In Georgia, two reunited brothers bonded by name, vowed to take “this relationship to the next level.” On Easter, we praise Jesus for already taking the utmost step to rise in sacrificial love for those He knows as His own. For you and me, indeed, He’s alive!

By:  Patricia Raybon

Reflect & Pray

How does it feel knowing that Jesus rose again and knows you by name? How can you know Him better?

Your knowledge of me is humbling, dear Jesus. Thank You for the sacrificial gift of Your knowing love.

Our Responsibility to Rest

Life can bring frustrations, but knowing that God’s timing is perfect, we can ask Him to help us wait patiently Psalm 37:6-8

Yesterday we started reading Psalm 37 and discussed what we must do to receive our heart’s desires. But if we keep reading that chapter, we find the psalmist encouraging us to rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him to act. 

Rest sounds easy, but sometimes it may require supernatural strength. Our natural tendency is to scramble, fret, and push our agenda, and those habits turn our mind away from delight and trust in the Lord. The stronger our desire is, the shorter our fuse. Sometimes we may even try to give God a timetable, but true rest occurs on His schedule. Only He understands every circumstance and knows the precise moment when answering our prayer is best. 

So, the basic tenets of Psalm 37 are interrelated: We must spend time enjoying God in order to learn to trust Him and commit to His way. And doing so then frees us to rest in His control and patiently wait for Him to act.

Take a moment to pray: Father, thank You for giving me the desires of my heart. Today, help me to delight in You, commit everything to You, and rest in the knowledge that You have everything under control. I will wait for Your perfect timing. Amen.

This Same Jesus

“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” (Hebrews 13:8)

When the Lord Jesus rose from the dead, then later ascended into heaven, His body was immortal, no longer subject to death—yet it was a physical body, capable of being seen and heard and touched, even capable of eating with His disciples. He was clearly recognizable, yet could quickly ascend from Earth to heaven and could pass through a solid wall. As He ascended, two angelic messengers said, “This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11). He was immeasurably different after His resurrection, yet Peter could also proclaim “that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36).

Furthermore, even when He returns and assumes the eternal throne of the universe, He will still be the same. “But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever:…they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail” (Hebrews 1:8, 12).

This was the same Jesus whom John the Baptist identified at the beginning of His earthly ministry. “He that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost” (John 1:33).

In fact, before His baptism, and even before His incarnation, He was the same. “In the beginning was the Word….The same was in the beginning with God” (John 1:1-2). This same Jesus who lived among men, identified by John the Baptist as the Son of God, and who died on the cross, is the eternal Word by whom all things were made, as well as the resurrected Savior and coming King. Jesus Christ is truly “the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” HMM


Why is it that we often find:

  • God so distant?
  • Our hearts so cold?
  • The Scriptures so flat?
  • Our efforts at ministry so fruitless?


One reason may be the fact that in the work environment we are brutalized

My guess is that to survive, we feel we have to be tough. Thick-skinned. A person who is impervious to pain, pressure… problems. Someone who has the answers.

So our work day is often characterized by a high degree of stress. Politics. Manipulation: Doing whatever it takes to win.

We become hardened. Jaded. Cynical. Cold. Exploitative. Brutalized. (2 Timothy 3:1-4)

Much in our professional world caters to pride: To impressing and being impressed. And when we carry this hardened attitude over into our approach to God, He simply will not be known, as our Heavenly Father responds only to the humble… To the poor in spirit. (James 4:6; Matthew 5:3)

Since the brutal work environment probably will remain with us, let me propose two solutions:

(1) That we settle in our soul the fact that it is God, not us, who meets our needs. “But remember the lord your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth… “ (Deuteronomy 8:18). Once we understand God to be our provider, we are then free to serve people rather than manipulate them to our advantage.

(2) That we settle in our soul either that God’s grace is sufficient in the circumstances, or that He will provide a way of escape from the circumstances. (2 Corinthians 12:9, 10; 1 Corinthians 10:13)

Once we choose to rest in the provision, grace, and sovereignty of God, intimacy with Him will become an increasing reality, the Scriptures will begin to come alive, and fruit in and through our lives will start to bud!
Facts of the Matter: Daily Devotionals.

“No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper.”

Numbers 22:1-20

Numbers 22:1-3

Yet they ought to have rejoiced, for the Amorites had been their great enemies, and Israel had put them down: but men who are bent on opposing God’s servants are under such an infatuation that they know not their own mercies.

Numbers 22:4-6

Moab hated Israel, but did not come to open fighting at first. Many are the underhanded enemies of Israel, but God will defeat their devices.

Numbers 22:9

Probably Balaam was surprised beyond measure that God should actually come to him. He had been a mere magician, but now for awhile the true prophetic spirit filled him.

Numbers 22:12

What an opportunity for Balaam, if he had but been blessed with grace as well as with the prophetic gift. Here the Lord told him of a blessed people; why did he not cast in his lot with them?

Numbers 22:13, 14

So far so good. Under the pressure of fear Balaam is obedient, but will he hold on?

Numbers 22:15-17

Here are larger bribes—how will the prophet act now?

Numbers 22:18-20

He wanted to go, for he loved the wages of unrighteousness, and to try him he has a conditional permit to go if the princes come again and press him, but not else. We shall see in our next reading how his evil heart broke this gentle bond. He was a great man, an enlightened man, and for a while a supernaturally endowed man, but a grain of grace would have been of more value to him than all this, and for lack of it he perished miserably. O Lord, give us grace rather than the rarest endowments.

Place the Greatest Value on Godliness

He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him freely give us all things? Romans 8:32

Were the church a pure and Spirit-filled body, wholly led and directed by spiritual considerations, certainly the purest and the saintliest men and women would be the ones most appreciated and most honored, but the opposite is true!

Godliness is no longer valued, except for the very old or the very dead!

The saintly souls are forgotten in the whirl of religious activity. The noisy, the self-assertive, the entertaining are sought after and rewarded in every way, with gifts, crowds, offerings and publicity. The Christlike, the self-forgetting, the otherworldly are jostled aside to make room for the latest converted playboy who is usually not too well converted and still very much a playboy.

The whole shortsighted philosophy that ignores eternal qualities and majors in trivialities is a form of unbelief. These Christians who embody such a philosophy are clamoring after present reward; they are too impatient to wait for the Lord’s time! The true saint sees farther than this; he cares little for passing values; he looks forward eagerly to the day when eternal things shall come into their own, and godliness will be found to be all that matters.

The wise Christian will be content to wait for that day, and in the meantime, he will serve his generation in the will of God!