Follow You Anywhere // devotional

 

Wherever You lead me  

Whatever it costs me  

All I want is You  

Jesus, all I want is You

—Follow You Anywhere

 

We are all trying to figure out where we are going in life.  Whether you have your dream job or not, it seems like we are constantly faced with the looming question, “What are you going to do with your life?”  It’s really easy to think that we will be truly satisfied when we find the right job or career.

At the beginning of His ministry, Jesus invited a group of fishermen to go back out after an unsuccessful night at sea.  When they recast their nets, immediately their boats were overflowing with fish. More than the blessing, these fishermen were so in awe of Jesus and what He was able to do.  They were humbled because God was standing in their presence.

Then, Jesus said two of the most life-changing words, “Follow Me.” Jesus invited them to be in a relationship with God.  They were so compelled by who Jesus was, they left everything, including their business, and followed him.

You see, our primary calling in life is to follow Jesus.  This calling is to die to ourselves and our way, and embrace Jesus and His way.  When you see and experience the love of Jesus, you realize, He is worth our everything.  The benefits of knowing Jesus far outweigh the costs. In Him, we find true satisfaction for our souls.  We can deal with disappointments and setbacks, because through it all, Jesus is walking with us.

As we follow Jesus, He promises to give us a role to play.  He said, “I will make you become fishers of men.” He invites us to be a part of what He is doing on the earth.  Our job is to follow Jesus, it’s His job to make us into whatever He wants us to be. We just need to be open and available.  As we follow Him, we can trust that at just the right time, He will bring about His purposes and plans for our lives.

And Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” Immediately they left their nets and followed Him.

Mark 1:17-18

– Brett Younker


Bigger Than I Thought // devotional

 

I throw all my cares before You

My doubts and fears don’t scare You

You’re bigger than I thought You were

-Bigger Than I Thought You Were

There is a very beautiful and challenging story found in Mark 9 starting with verse 14. It’s about a man who is trying to get his son some much needed help. Help that could only come from Jesus. You should read it. I’ll wait…

Ok, you probably have loads of questions after reading a story like that. Good. So do I. After meditating on this story, here are the two things that left me compelled and encouraged.

1) Put yourself in the shoes of this father. His son is in really, really bad shape. This man has got to be gripped with all sorts of fears and questions and possibly some anger or doubt; all the kinds of things that life has a way of throwing at us. But, instead of running away from God with all those things, he ran straight towards Him. He threw it all at the feet of Jesus. Even his honest faith. “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief” verse 24.

2) Jesus doesn’t turn him away. Not only did Jesus heal the boy, but He also helped the father surrender. In the Kingdom of God, surrender always leads to freedom.

Are there hurts, fears or doubts in your life that cause you to run away from Jesus instead of towards Him? Don’t be afraid. He won’t turn you away. He’s bigger than that. The King is on your side. Surrender it all. Find your freedom.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Philippians 4:6-8


written by Sean Curran


More To Come // devotional

 

 

You’re the God who makes the giants fall   

You bring down the walls of Jericho    

You’re the God who gives the miracle    

We believe    

-More To Come

 

Remembering is a powerful thing. We are not promised every day will be the brightest and the best. We are living in a world broken by sin and filled with pain and heartache. In fact, I’m willing to bet that each and every one of us reading this right now have been disappointed, heartbroken, let down or walked through the valley of the shadow of death at some point in life. As sons and daughters of the living God, these are the times when remembering is crucial.

Our God has a perfect track record. He has never broken a promise and has never failed to keep His word. His ways are trustworthy and His heart is good. We can look back through scripture and see all the ways that He has been a deliverer, provider, protector, guide and Savior to His people. We can even look back on our own lives and see how His hands have held us, protected us and led us through desert seasons. These moments and miracles are markers. They are rocks of remembrance that we return to when we find ourselves in the fight of our lives wondering if He is with us. It’s God’s past faithfulness that gives us confidence for today and for whatever lies ahead.

Lift your eyes today and remember the God who holds you. He is good. He is powerful. He is near. He does come through. He is sovereign over all. He has a plan. He is Lord. He is not done. There is more to come.

Your word, Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. Your faithfulness continues through all generations; You established the earth, and it endures. Your laws endure to this day, for all things serve You.

Psalm 119:89-91

 

written by: Kristian Stanfill

Photos by: Austin Bell + Brooke Bennett


It Is Finished // devotional

                                                       

 

Strongholds bowing to the Savior

Resurrection power, over every circumstance…

-It is Finished

 

A lie is anything that leads us to believe the opposite of what God says about us. And a lie, over time, can become a stronghold — a battle that feels impossible to overcome. You’re not alone if you’ve ever felt imprisoned by a desire, a grief, a guilt, or bitterness. However, we were not designed to live a life of captivity. There is freedom for every one of us in the finished work of Jesus: His death and resurrection.  

Have you ever considered what Scripture means when it talks about resurrection power? It says that Jesus holds all authority over death and the same power that raised Jesus from the grave is available to us today. Think about that! Don’t move by it too fast. Resurrection power breathed life into Jesus’ dead bones. It took a body that was dead and began pumping blood through its veins once again. That unrivaled strength did what no man could ever do: it brought life from death, hope from hopelessness.

We can live in that power today. Though each of us will face unforeseen circumstances and undesired hardships, those things do not define us and we are not enslaved to them. What seems impossible becomes possible when there is resurrection power involved. Hurts can be healed. Offenses can be forgiven. Dead things can come to life.

Wherever you find yourself today, remember this: every stronghold must bow to the authority of Jesus. Today we claim not just any power over our circumstances, but the greatest of them all: resurrection power.

 

“If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.”

Romans 8:11

 

written by: Jeff Johnson

 


LIFT 2017 Resources // recap

We Sing Because We’ve Seen.

 
What a remarkable time we had at LIFT 2017: A Collective of Worship Leaders, Musicians, and Creative! We had leaders and teams from over 450 churches who came together for a time of renewal and refocusing our hearts on Jesus. There were several different states, regions, backgrounds, and denominations represented at LIFT — but when we lift up the name of Jesus, we become one Church. It was truly a beautiful sight and sound to witness.

There were lots of great sessions and breakouts that happened this year, and because no one was able to go to all of them, we’re releasing several of them for FREE! You’re welcome to download these, share them, and hopefully encourage your team with them. Sign-up below to join our Passion Music and Passion Conferences email lists and we’ll send you a link to the watch / download page.

Also, don’t forget to register early for LIFT 2018. We’ll see you there!
 


BUILD MY LIFE // devotional

Before following Jesus, we were all building our lives on something.

 

Whether it was a relationship, an achievement, a dream, a failure, or our own plan, our foundation was our own making. We can only build our lives with our own hands for so long until realizing that our foundations aren’t strong enough. They are cracked. Or completely shattered. What God wants to build in each of our lives is an eternal, purpose-filled life, a life that we cannot muster or earn or build on our own strength. It takes a strong and sure foundation. When we put our faith in Jesus, we exchanged our faulty, self-made, crumbling foundation, broken by the weight of sin and darkness, for a sure footing on the brand new foundation of God, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.

As we surrender daily to Jesus, we begin to see him building what only He can build in us: eyes that see him, hearts filled with the things He loves, and lives which seek to serve those around us. His is a love which cannot be moved, and in Jesus we are given a kingdom that cannot be shaken. Jesus holds it all together and the Holy Spirit fills us with wisdom and revelation, revealing who God is to us. Revelation always moves us to act. If we have truly seen God for who He is, our desires will shift and eventually become His desires. As He changes our lives, we will long for others to “know and rely on the love God has” for both us and those around us.

 

Father, show me who you are today. Fill me with your heart—all the things you love and want me to love—and empty me of the things which don’t build up your kingdom. Then lead me in your love to, in turn, love those around me with the love of Christ. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


ROADSHOW // recap

 


 

We have had the best month getting to travel all over America with Rock & Worship Roadshow. It was so amazing to carry the songs of Passion into so many cities and watch Jesus touch down into the lives of people. We also got to do it with some of the best artist on the planet. Much love to @stevencurtischapman, @francescamusic, @rendcollective, @familyforce5, @jordanfeliz, @thederekminor, @urbanrescue, @loswhit, @thattonywolfguy, @compassion.

Our hearts are full. Grateful.


HEART ABANDONED // devotional

It is amazing how an ordinary boy with a less-than-glamourous job of tending fields (read: shoveling sheep poop and fighting lions off in his spare time) for his father was chosen by God for His extraordinary purposes and specifically commended as being one “after God’s own heart.”

 

Our stories are the same! God has called us by name, and through Jesus, brought us into his family. He has made the ordinary extraordinary and given us a new heart, a heart freed from captivity to sin and death which can now choose instead to follow Jesus with abandon. Scripture says in 2 Chronicles 16:9 that the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. In another translation, it says he strengthens hearts “that are completely his.”

The world tells us to abandon our hearts to other things, and our flesh beckons us back to a life of sin. We may have our hands balled up around something which we have not given to God. It may be something we compartmentalize: God, you can have it all…except this one thing. What is the thing, the relationship, the addiction, the money, the area of life you want control over? Are there any walls in your heart toward God? What would happen if our hearts were “completely His?” He gives us a strength which encourages us, gives courage to us, and sustains us. We lose our false semblance of control, but gain the protection and loving leading of God in our lives and peace that passes understanding. Let it be said of us, the Church, this generation, you and me, that we are a people with hearts abandoned, hearts that are completely His, hearts that are ever after Him alone.

 

God, give me a heart abandoned, ever after you alone. All the things of this world pale in comparison to You. If they don’t, awaken me to the reality of Christ, open my eyes to see you and surely everything else will fade into the background. I know You’re the one who gave me a new heart in Christ, so please shape it and guide it into your ways. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


HOW GREAT IS YOUR LOVE // devotional

It’s easy to look around and see that the world is looking for love.

 

We all deeply connect with the idea of feeling known, accepted, and ultimately, loved, and are searching for it…maybe in all the wrong places as the old adage says. But more often than not, we look for it in good things: a relationship, our career, a success or goal met, our family, the next adventure or “big” thing on the horizon. We may readily run to these things to fill us with a sense of love and acceptance, but there’s a void of dissatisfaction wherever earthly love has taken residence in us where only divine love will do. There are a lot of “good” loves, but only one heavenly Great Love. Only the love of God in Christ Jesus will satisfy continually the innermost depths of our hearts, minds, and souls, to the brim and overflowing both now and forever.

Scripture tells us in 1 John 3:1: How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called the children of God, and that is what we are! Romans 8 says that nothing, not death, life, nor circumstances, nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Through the Innocent Perfection who gave his life for us, we have been forever changed by the power of the cross and brought into this great love of God. This kind of love calls us by name and lifts us up. It gives us a mercy which is new every day. It allows us to live from a place of love and acceptance, not a place of striving or earning. We are simply free to respond to the love of God with our lives. Oh Lord, let us do that today!

 

Father, thank you that I can call you that! Father. You have poured out in great measure continually, even now, your unmatched love on me, that I would be called your child. Thank you that through Jesus I have access to the love and power of God through the Spirit. Help me to lift my eyes to you today, and let your love transform me as I cease striving and live from acceptance, not for it. Amen.


HOLY GROUND // devotional

The idea of Holy Ground was not a foreign one to God’s people Israel.

When Moses saw the burning bush, God told him to take off his sandals because he was standing on holy ground. Again, when Moses cried, “Show me your glory!” to God in Exodus 33, God had to hide Moses in a rock and shield him from seeing his face so he wouldn’t die at the sheer sight of His goodness and glory. It was too much, too glorious, to behold.

But now, because of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, when we as followers of Jesus cry “Show us your glory!” we find that it’s a cry of remembrance of all He has done for us and continues to do in us. Holy Ground is no longer a place, it’s the Person of Christ living in and through us, and He changes everything. Scripture tells us in 2 Corinthians 4 that “God, who has said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. The face Moses couldn’t see has now been revealed, all the hidden treasures of wisdom and knowledge, now found in Christ. When we lock eyes with Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith, it changes us. Again in 2 Corinthians 3, Paul tells believers that we all with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory and are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory. Our lives become worship back to Him as we respond to the glorious truth of “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

God thank you that you have made known to us who you are in Christ, who is the “radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his being.” Thank you that holy ground is not a place but a position—being found in you, Jesus, and you in me through the Spirit. Let my heart be one in awe of you, burning for you, and changed by you. In Jesus’ name, amen.