Antioch Devotionals- July 20-24

MONDAY, JULY 20TH Psalm 51:16-17 (MSG)
By Toya Aultman
"Going through the motions doesn’t please you, flawless performance is
nothing to you. I learned God-worship when my pride was shattered.
Heart-shattered lives ready for love don’t for a moment escape God’s

God used Psalm 51 several years back to really speak to my heart. I had
gone through the motions for a while and just needed God to break my
heart for what broke His. We don't go to church to be seen. We don't go
to church with a "bless me if you can" attitude. We don't go to church
for a nap. We go to church to worship, to worship the Creator of ALL
things, the Savior for this hurting world.

The church building may look a little sparse these days, but rest
assured the church of God is still alive and well! Don't allow the enemy
to steal your joy of worship. Allow God to search your heart, to restore
the joy of His salvation, if that is needed. Allow His Spirit to work in
your inmost being and be grieved for the things that grieve God and to
rejoice in the things that make Him famous!

Hillsong has a song that says, "Heal my heart and make it clean. Open up
my eyes to the things unseen. Show me how to love, like You have loved
me. Break my heart for what breaks Yours, everything I am for Your
kingdom's cause, as I walk from earth into eternity." Oh dear friends,
may we walk into eternity giving all praise to the ONLY ONE who is

Precious Father, thank You for loving me and forgiving me. Thank You for
always being faithful when I call. Please open my eyes and allow me to
be a light for You in these dark and troubling days. Amen.
TUESDAY, JULY 21ST Matthew 5:5 (NIV)
Gentle Giant by Paulette Herring
“Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth.”- Matthew 5:5

This verse is another Beatitude taken from the Sermon on the Mount. Sometimes we think of meekness as a weakness, but it is not. Meekness is power under restraint. Some characteristics of meekness are to soothe, bring comfort, have patience, respect, humility, beauty, kindness and to be gentle.
A breeze can bring soothing relief but if it becomes a raging wind, it can cause great damage. A gentle horse will let a rider harness it, lead it, and climb onto its back. The horse weighs a lot more than you do, yet it can be easily led.
Jesus was humble enough to die on the cross for us. He had the power to stop it, by just calling on the angels. He endured the cross for us. He bent down so we could be lifted up. This is the power of restraint.
Lift up someone this week and be a blessing to them. We all could use some blessings right now!
WEDNESDAY, JULY 22ND Proverbs 15:1 (NIV)
Words Are Powerful by Chris Blacksmith
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”- Proverbs 15:1

History has proven time and time again that words are powerful. Consider Winston Churchill’s speech during World War II when he rallied the forces of England to victory with these words, “We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields, and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills, we shall never surrender.”
Yes it’s true words are powerful; God spoke and creation came into existence. Jesus calmed the storm when He said, “peace be still”. Later He said, “It is finished” and brought salvation to all of humanity. Yes it’s true words are powerful.
Have you considered just how powerful your words are? Just think how your words might affect someone. True enough, we can be harsh and get the upper hand, but at what cost? Who knows it may be your words that pushes someone away. It may be your words that pushes someone over the top. Even worse it may be your words that prevent someone from coming to Christ. Yes it’s true words are powerful. With that said, take some time before you speak, and be gentle with your speech. The outcome will be rewarding and your heart will be filled with peace because words are powerful.
THURSDAY, JULY 23RD John 10:10
Is Meekness Weakness? by Paula McKee
“The thief [Satan] comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I [,Jesus,] have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”- John 10:10
Epic battles occur regularly between frustrated adults and willful children. I remember gripping my toddler’s clothing through the vertical slats of a chair as she arched her back and struggled. I gritted my teeth and fairly hissed, “You will sit here until I tell you can get up.”
Isn’t that a reasonable picture of what we too often do to God? We arch our backs and fight against the pull of what He knows is best for us. We must touch that hot stove and figure out that it burns before we humble ourselves and acknowledge that when we allow our spirits to be nailed to the cross, we win. The meek “inherit the earth” for a reason. Meekly accept the saving grace of Jesus Christ. Nail that rebellious spirit to the cross and live a blessed life.

Prayer: Thank you, God, for not giving up on me. Help me to live according to your will today and every day. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.
FRIDAY, JULY 24TH Matthew 5:7
By Jeff Rice
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”- Matthew 5:7
I must confess that I am not very handy when it comes to fixing things around the house. I have always said that I know just enough to make a 30 minute job a 3 hour job. But, nonetheless I love to watch DIY programs on TV. I always think to myself, “I can do that”. We live in a culture that is obsessed with Self-Help advice and DIY projects, and there is nothing wrong with this but as believers we need to be careful to not approach the Bible in the same way.
The Bible is not a self-help book that gives you the magic formula or keys to make the necessary changes to your life so you can enjoy your best life here on this Earth. It is a book that reveals man’s brokenness and sinfulness and our desperate need for a Savior. God did not send His Son to improve us but to transform us!
So as we read and meditate on the beatitudes let’s not get caught in the trap of self-righteousness that says if we just discipline ourselves enough and change our attitude God will bless us. This whole sermon speaks to that very thing. If the attitude of our heart is going to change then it will be the Spirit of God working in us to transform us.
Pastor Jason told us that to be meek means “power under control”. But this is not a matter of self discipline or anger management techniques. It is humbling ourselves to realize the only power that we truly have comes from the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is not a power that is ours but God given, so we must submit to that same Lord Jesus Christ to use that power for His Glory and not our gain. This is so counter cultural and against every human instinct. That’s the point. In our sinfulness humans will always try to abuse power. Ever heard the saying “Power Corrupts”. Unless we humble ourselves in submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and the control of the Holy Spirit in our lives we will never achieve the meekness that Jesus Christ had and the humility that will identify us as Christ followers.