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Word For You Today

Learn to work with others 1



'The burden is too heavy for me.' Numbers 11:14 NIV

Working with others can either be a blessing or a challenge! But guess what? We are surrounded by people in every situation in life. We cannot hide away from the difficult people forever, and it's a lot of hard work to make sure we're only surrounded by 'easy' people.

We are all created differently. Our personalities are as different as the colours in a crayon set. Some colours work beautifully together and some not as well. When you are asked to work closely with someone who is difficult, your first instinct is to dread it and then maybe try to get out of it. When this situation happens, stop and ask God why you are dreading it so much. Ask him to give you grace, patience and discernment for the first meeting or get-together. Then ask him to help you to see the bigger picture about this person. It's highly likely that God will show you how that person can bring something unique to the work.

Working with others will make you so much stronger than trying to do everything alone, even if that person and you do not initially gel. Imagine a rainbow. It contains the spectrum of colours, yet the total picture works so well together. Every colour is equal and has something unique to bring, and the result is spectacular.

So what now? Who in your life is difficult to work with? Ask God for his grace, strength and patience in this situation and ask him to show you that person's true, beautiful colours.

Soulfood: Acts 18-19 Mk 4:35-41 Ps 7:10-17 Pro 11:7-9,

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Becoming like Jesus



'And we... are being transformed into his image...' 2 Corinthians 3:18 NIV

Ever thought about what kind of guy Jesus was while he was here on earth? We have our 'white muslin robe and long dark hair' image because of what we've seen in movies, but what was he actually like? We can infer that Jesus had a darker skin complexion, darker eyes and dark hair because he was born to a middle eastern family. From Isaiah 53:2 we can deduce that he wasn't particularly good looking.

But, as a person, he had something undeniably attractive about him. He could say to people, 'Follow me' and they dropped everything and did! Jesus was not afraid to speak out, especially to those who were trying to find a reason to kill him. He loved people and was drawn to the sick and poor. He was a joyful person; the children flocked to him, and children don't go to unhappy people! He didn't look for people's approval, doing only what his Father showed him to do.

So, when we look at Jesus we can see what God is like because Jesus is God's Son. But, also, we can see what we can be like, because Jesus was also Mary's son and therefore very human. The Bible says that God (together with Jesus and the Holy Spirit) created us in their image (see Genesis 1:27). Wow, that is a powerful statement!

So what now? You are already a new creation (see 2 Corinthians 5:17). But God is in the process of making you more and more like Jesus (see 2 Corinthians 3:18). How totally exciting!

Soulfood: Acts 16-17 Mk 4:30-34 Ps 7:1-9 Pro 11:3-6,

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No more worrying



'It begins and ends with faith...those who are right with God...live by faith.' Romans 1:17 NCV

Some people worry about the strangest things. A man who claimed he'd swallowed a horse was sent to a psychiatrist who recommended having an operation for the removal of the horse. The surgeon agreed to bring a horse into the operating room so that when the man woke up he'd know the operation was a success. But after the operation the man opened his eyes and announced, 'That's the wrong horse. It's white. The one I swallowed was black!'

Too much worry and not enough reality; it's why Jesus had loads to say about worry. Understand this. Worry: (a) wastes your time and energy. Jesus said, 'You cannot add any time to your life by worrying about it' (Matthew 6:27 NCV)? It's a medically proven fact that worry can shorten your life; (b) stops you from enjoying what you have. When you worry about things that may happen in the future, you are robbing yourself of the moment. Trust God with your future; (c) makes you forget God's promises. 'Since he did not spare even his own Son for us but gave him up for us all, won't he also surely give us everything else' (Romans 8:32 TLB)?

God knows your needs and your problems, so don't just ignore them hoping they will go away, but also don't worry. There's a healthy balance that involves seeing the concerns and giving them carefully to God.

So what now? Today, stop worrying and trust God. 'It begins and ends with faith...those who are right with God...live by faith' (Romans 1:17 NCV).

Soulfood: Acts 14-15 Mk 4:21-29 Ps 16 Pro 11:1-2,

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You have access to God



'So let us come boldly to the very throne of God.' Hebrews 4:16 TLB

In the 'olden days' of the Bible, people could only approach or speak to God through the High Priest, and only at certain times. But then Jesus came, and his death and resurrection destroyed the old rules and gave us complete access to his Father (our Father) at any time! 'Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us' (Ephesians 2:18 NLT). How awesome is that!

God wants nothing more than to have a relationship with you. This means that when you come to him he draws close to you and is ready to listen and talk to you. He wants you to come right into the throne-room. And the great thing is that you can do this at any time, whether you're in your favourite prayer spot, working, eating or even socialising with a group of people. It helps to use your imagination and see yourself there with him.

It's in his throne-room, in his presence, that you will learn God's voice and understand who he is. It's there he will truly bless you, but also where he will challenge, shape and transform you.

So what now? Sometimes it may seem that God is far away or inaccessible. Acts 17:27-28 (GWT) says that God 'is never far from any one of us. Certainly, we live, move, and exist because of him. As some of your poets have said, "We are God's children."' Reach out to him, knowing he is always accessible.

Soulfood: Acts 12-13 Mk 4:10-20 Ps 103:13-22 Pro 10:30-32,

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Rooted in God's love



'Stand firm and be deeply rooted in his love.' Ephesians 3:17 CEV

Many of us have suffered from, or still battle through, rejection of some sort. This rejection may be real - as serious as being abandoned by or ignored by a parent. This kind of deep rejection can affect and debilitate people for years. Other rejection is sometimes only perceived rejection, but it can still affect us negatively and prevent us from living victoriously and in peace.

But here's a great truth: God loves us with an everlasting love (see Jeremiah 31:3) and to as many as receive him, he gives the power to be sons and daughters of God (see John 1:12). Talk about accepted! We are not only accepted 'in' God, we are accepted 'by' him! The Bible also says there is nothing that can separate us from his love (see Romans 8:38-39); and 'nothing' means nothing in God's dictionary.

And here's more good news! If your roots are securely in God, you can be victorious over your feelings of rejection. When you realise that you're 100% loved, welcomed, wanted and cared for by the Creator of the universe, it will help you heal from any deep personal rejection; it will also not really matter that you didn't get picked for the footie team.

So what now? It's time to use God's acceptance as a basis for your worth. It's time to push through your own pain to see what God thinks about your situation, and how he sees you. Get digging, plant some seeds of God's Word in your life and grow deep, strong roots into God's love.

Soulfood: Gal 5:22 2 Pet 3:3-15 Matt 5:39 1 Sam 25:1-42,

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'Nevertheless'



'Nevertheless David took the stronghold of Zion.' 2 Samuel 5:7 NKJV

In 1000 BC David had a look at Jerusalem. It was a monster of a fortress with incredible high, impenetrable walls The enemy was so self-assured they taunted them, saying 'You'll never get in here...Even the blind and lame could keep you out' (2 Samuel 5:6 NLT)! The situation looked hopeless. But did that stop David? Not in the slightest. The Bible says, 'Nevertheless David took the stronghold (that is, the City of David)' (2 Samuel 5:7 NKJV). David won because he trusted in God to help him. He didn't get in over the high walls, he found an alternative route through the water tunnels (see 2 Samuel 5:8)!

We all have areas in our lives where the fight looks hard or hopeless - the walls are too big and we seem so small! Satan tells us we can't do it and we believe him. It might be that habit we can't quit, the attitude we can't shake, the way we feel every single time we look in that mirror... we just don't feel good enough.

But, your battles (which in the Bible are called strongholds) do not frighten or knock back God. When the enemy says, 'You're stuck, you'll never get out,' the Bible says God's 'mighty weapons...knock down the devil's strongholds' (2 Corinthians 10:4 TLB).

So what now? To be like David and overcome the battle, you must do two things. Listen to the right voice - the one telling you that you can overcome; and look for alternative solutions - look for the tunnels. Nevertheless, you will be victorious!

Soulfood: Acts 10-11 Mk 4:1-9 Ps 103:1-12 Pro 10:27-29,

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Have you heard



''God has taken care of his people...' Luke 7:17 GWT

Jesus walks into a village and sees a woman wailing alongside the body of her son being carried for burial. Luke says: 'When the Lord saw her, he felt sorry for her. He said to her, "Don't cry." He went up to the open coffin... He said, "Young man, I'm telling you to come back to life!" The dead man sat up and began to talk... Everyone was struck with fear and praised God. They said, "A great prophet has appeared among us," and "God has taken care of his people"' (Luke 7:13-17 GWT).

Many Jews in that time believed that God had forgotten them. The Romans were in charge, and life was very hard for them. Then the stories start: 'Have you heard about the man preaching something new or about the healings or the people getting free food?' 'Have you heard he makes friends with losers and sinners or about that boy raised from the dead?'

For the religious leaders, these stories were totally heretic, but for the lost, sick, broken and abused, the stories were full of hope. If you are one of the 7.6 billion people in the world who hasn't got life sorted: Jesus came to earth way back then to help you, and that's why the Holy Spirit is here today.

So what now? Do you need something brought back to life or healed or provided? A dream, a relationship, hope for the future? Ask God for his help. Have you heard? God is taking care of you!

Soulfood: Acts 8-9 Mk 3:28-35 Ps 130 Pro 10:24-26,

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