Welcome to Daily Steps!
A weekly devotional message with daily scripture readings, prayer prompts, and action steps to help you spend time with Jesus and strengthen your relationship with Him.
Mark 4: 8-11 "Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up, grew, and produced a crop, some multiplying thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times. Then Jesus said, 'Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.' When he was alone, the Twelve and the others around him asked him about the parables. He told them, 'The secret of the Kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside, everything is said in parables.'"
The Kingdom of God is Within You
Have you ever frantically looked everywhere for something precious like a watch, your glasses, or your wedding ring, only to find it in the pocket of the jacket you are wearing? The feeling at the moment of discovery is so gratifying, peaceful, and joyful. You want to celebrate that feeling with everyone around you, shouting and jumping with joy because what was lost is now found.
Our lives are like a journey of discovery, to know more about the Kingdom of God and how to experience it. Through the parables He told, Jesus invites us to enter the Kingdom of God and shows us the way to live our lives so that we can be a part of bringing others into the Kingdom with us. Imagine the feeling of finding that the precious thing we have been looking for is right there within us all along. That is the moment that our relentless searching and hard work comes to an end.
Mark 4:8 tells us that the seeds that fall on good soil multiplied. Some multiplied to thirty, some to sixty, and some to even a hundred times. Jesus is inviting us to look at our lives and check our hearts so that others around us can see God's Kingdom through us by the way we live, what we say, and how we act. Instead of blaming the economy, the government, the conflicts happening around us, the pandemic, and other external things for a bad harvest, we should share with others the precious gift within us, expanding its impact on the world around us by a hundredfold. We can harvest good things and reap an abundant crop if we allow the Holy Spirit to transform our lives. Sometimes we will be able to do it in a small way, and it will be only a few people who reap the benefits. Other times, it could be a hundred times more as we allow the Kingdom of God to grow within us and overflow into the lives of others.
Our lives can display the evidence of God's Kingdom through our jobs at our workplace, at our kids' school while interacting with other parents and encouraging the teachers, with our friends, neighbors, the community, and our fellow church members. We can even impact others in our social media posts by offering encouraging and positive messages of hope and faith. The Kingdom of God is all about living each day with joy, peace, love, faith, kindness, care, and then spreading those fruits of the Spirit through our intentions, words, and actions, such as serving others in times of need. Our encouragement can help people discover Jesus for themselves and give them the strength to rise above challenges and the comfort to endure suffering.
Daily Bible Readings
Start your day meditating on the Bible verses. Feed your mind with God's promises and then see how your entire day flows. Make this your daily habit and you will experience transformation in your life.
Monday - Read Isaiah 55:10-11, Jeremiah 30:17, Amos 9:14. Reading these Bible verses will revitalize your hope. It gives us a promise that we can survive anything that the world throws at us. When life doesn't go as planned, it's easy to lose hope. During such times, the Word of God gives us hope for a better future. All that we need is to have faith as little as a mustard seed and trust that God's hand is at work. True hope comes by trusting God even when circumstances are difficult and believing that it's for our greater good, even if we may not be sure of what is ahead for us. "Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see." (Hebrews 11:1) Do you believe that all things in the current situation work together for the good of those who love God (Romans 8:28)?
Tuesday – Read Mark 4:20. Jesus gives us a three-step process to produce the harvest of God's Kingdom – hear the Word, accept it, and produce a good crop. It's simple. All that we have to do is keep hearing and practicing the Word of God. Our mind starts accepting what we keep hearing if we take action, and put it into practice. Rather than listening to all of the negative news and stories around us, it's best to focus our minds on listening to God's Word. Take some time to practice the art of truly hearing and implementing God's Word. Re-read today's verse slowly asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to you what He wants you to learn from it.
Wednesday – Read Mark 4:13-14 Gardeners know the process of sowing a seed so that it produces a plant. They begin by scattering the seed and then add fertilizers to create a conducive environment for the plant to grow. Most importantly, they water it regularly. We need to follow the same process with sowing the Word of God into our hearts and minds. When we memorize Bible verses, they come in handy to use when anxiety, stress, fear, or calamity strikes. Your mind starts reciting a familiar verse and holds onto it for hope. Here is a small exercise to try. Write one Bible verse on a sheet of paper and keep it in your pocket the whole day. Take it out and read it whenever you get a moment. Try this exercise for 21 days, and you will have sown 21 seeds that will grow in you.
Thursday – Read Mark 4:18-19 and Matthew 6:25-34. Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice. Make this your mission in life to "Rejoice through your tears and your fears." It may seem like a tall order and a big ask, but worrying will not resolve anything. The only way through worry is to rejoice your way to the other side. At least that will be a courageous and brave act. Worries cloud your mind and your judgment. God's Word will not take root if you are constantly worried.
Friday - Read Mark 4:1. Take a moment to ponder your life, and ask yourself this question: do you continue to follow Jesus when things do not match your expectations? Jesus had no power, no wealth, no crown, no palace, and no army. Jesus did not fit human expectations of a king. His Kingdom was truly different than what people expected. And still, large crowds followed Him, and the King of kings preached to the crowd from a boat, instead of His throne. The people sat at the shore to hear the message of God. God's Kingdom is open for everyone who chooses to follow Him. Listen to this song and proclaim your promise to follow Jesus and not turn back.
TAKE YOUR NEXT STEP
Grow closer to God each day and explore what it means to be a part of bringing the Kingdom of Heaven down to earth.
Want to Go Even Further?
If you are not already using our weekly study guide with your community group or family members, you're missing out on thought-provoking questions for discussion or individual study.
Get Your Worship On!
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