S O A P

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Romans 1:11 I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong. O-bservation: St. Paul desired to get to the Christians in Rome so he would be able to impart a spiritual gift on them to make them strong. It is evident through other New Testament writings that Paul would do this through the laying on of hands. It was Paul’s continual goal to “Be A Gift Giver.” A-pplication: Not everyone who reads this post will feel inclined to impart spiritual gifts to other people like the Apostle Paul did. Yet we can all “Be A Gift Giver.” You can always give the gift of love to one another. What about the gift of prayer or the gift of helping a friend move? Or what about the gift of service. I’m sure there are some who will read this, and you are the person who actually imparts spiritual gifts to others, but whatever you do, “Be A Gift Giver!” There’s nothing more rewarding than being generous with those in need of a gift that perhaps only you can produce. No matter what, spend your life being like Jesus....

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: 2 Thessalonians 3:13 And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good. O-bservation: As he was closing out his letter to the church at Thessaloniki, St. Paul implores them never to grow tired of doing good. Some had actually become busybodies and were lazy, and Paul addressed that too, but his great directive at the end was, “Please Don’t Get Tired Of Doing Good!” A-pplication: Last night, my wife and I had the wonderful opportunity to be part of a great Christian organization fundraiser that provides clean water for some of the world’s most desperate locations. To sit and listen, not just to the need worldwide but to also hear of this incredible organization’s never-ending worldwide operation to address the problem, made me think of this verse. I almost felt like the leader of this wonderful team must have at one point in his life read this one verse and said, “Lord, I promise you I will do everything I can to obey this admonition of the Apostle.” But none of us have to lead a worldwide organization to obey Jesus’ call. We only have to say, “Yes I promise,” when He...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Psalm 78:4 We will not hide them from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done. O-bservation: These are the words of the Psalmist reminding the people of Israel then and the people of Judeo/Christian faith today to tell the next generation the wonders of the Almighty. What has been passed down to them, and what has been experienced by them, of the great wonders of God must be delivered to their children no matter what. We must all, “Pass It On!” A-pplication: Each generation that has received an excellent background in spiritual matters tends to lighten their presentation to the next generation. I say that because each generation looks back on their parents as being too strict. Yet children have no other foundation to stand upon initially than what their parents give them. If parents are not careful, they will lighten the promotion of fundamental Christian truth given to their children. That’s why it is often said, “What one generation condones, the next generation will openly practice.” I’ve watched it happen in my own family. I was light on some things my...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: 2 Thessalonians 1:11 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. O-bservation: St. Paul wanted the young church at Thessaloniki to know that he had them in his prayers. He desired that they would be worthy of the calling the Lord had placed on their life. Not only that, but he wanted their desires for goodness to become a reality in their lives, as well as all of their deeds to be motivated by faith. A-pplication: As I was reading this passage this AM, I had to stop and think to myself, “Are all of my desires, desires to be good and do good things? Are all of my deeds motivated by faith?” Remember, it was the same Apostle Paul who told the Roman Church that if it is not done in faith, it is done in sin (Rom. 14:23)! But I know I have selfish motives at times, and I know there are times when I’d like to “get back” at those who...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. O-bservation: In writing to the church at Thessaloniki, St. Paul reminded them that whether we are awake or asleep, we are living together with Jesus because He had died and risen from the grave. Because of this, we have great hope, and we are to “Be An Encourager” to everyone we meet at all times. A-pplication: This is one of my favorite verses in the Bible, and I’m not bragging, I promise. Because of my father, it’s easy for me to encourage other people. That’s the way dad was. He was an encourager to everyone he met. Because of that, he always had people around him. People were drawn to dad because he saw the best in them, and as a young man, I determined I wanted to be that way. I know others haven’t had the upbringing I had, so that’s why it’s easy for me to encourage others. Yet, I have found that when I encourage others, like my father, they are drawn to me as well. Maybe today you could make a change. Why not,...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: 2 Samuel 24:24 But the king replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” O-bservation: King David had sinned greatly by insisting that the fighting men of Israel be numbered. This was a sin in the eyes of God. When it was over, David himself knew he had done wrong and felt the conviction of the Holy Spirit for his sin. In the end, God sent an angel and killed seventy thousand Israeli people, from Dan to Beersheba! Finally, the Lord’s hand relented, and David went to buy the threshing floor from Araunah. Araunah said he would give it to the king as a gift. David said, “This land I’m buying from you to build an altar to sacrifice to the Lord for my sin will not suffice Unless It Costs Me Something!” A-pplication: My wife and I have learned something in the past twenty-three years as the Pastors of Trinity Church here in Miami. We’ve learned that when people have to pay something for an event, they are more likely to show up at the event. People never...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: 2 Samuel 21:15 Once again there was a battle between the Philistines and Israel. David went down with his men to fight against the Philistines, and he became exhausted. O-bservation: David was up in years, and yet he still insisted on fighting with his men. This was the very first time there appeared to be a weakening in King David’s physical body. He was the leader of Israel. He had covered the full gamut of leadership, from winning to losing, from running to standing, from joy to sorrow, from sin to righteous living, from despair to hope, and on it goes. But finally, there came a weakening of the physical body and one of David’s men stepped in to save the day. After this event, the men of Israel told their king he would never again go into battle with them in case the light might go out in Israel. A-pplication: This story is simply an illustration of “The Wear And Tear Of Leadership.” Unlike a third or fourth or tenth king in a succession of kings kind of leadership role in a country led by a Sovereign, David was the founder of the family of King...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Matthew 27:66 So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard. O-bservation: The day after Jesus was crucified and laid in Joseph’s tomb with a big rock stationed in front of the tomb, the chief priest and some Pharisees went to see Pilate. They told him about Jesus’ declaration that He would rise from the dead after three days in the tomb. Pilate said, “Go make the tomb as secure as you can and place a guard there.” So that’s what they did. A-pplication: These were Jewish people who worried that Jesus might actually resurrect from the dead. They had access to all of the stories of their God Jehovah throughout their Jewish history. Their God had destroyed the earth by flood. Their God had delivered the Jewish people from over 400 years of bondage to the Egyptians in one night with the  Passover angel. Their God had opened the Red Sea for Moses. He had killed one hundred and eighty-five thousand Assyrian soldiers by the hand of one angel. Unfortunately for Pilate and the Jewish chief priest and Pharisees, they believed that one guard and their...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Psalm 32:2 Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not count against them and in whose spirit is no deceit. O-bservation: King David writes these words as one who had been forgiven by the Lord and was clean before his Maker. As the leader of his nation, he knew people would stand before him saying one thing, yet with a hidden agenda not mentioned. David believed that when the Lord has forgiven one’s sin, it is best to never come before Him with something hidden. A-pplication: As a servant leader, I often have people come to me saying one thing while I’m quick to discern they actually have a hidden agenda. They know that if they can slip this request through me, it will open the door for them to get what they really want. I’m sure, through the years, I’ve been naive enough to be fooled by many people. However, when it comes to the living God, some people believe they can actually hide their real “WANT”  from Him. How foolish. David knew that doesn’t work with the Almighty. That’s why he believed that the most important part of one’s relationship with the Lord...

S. O. A. P. Here’s Your 90 second AM Devotional! S-cripture: Matthew 24:4 Jesus answered, “Watch out that no one deceives you.” O-bservation: Two days before Jesus was crucified, He was on the Mount of Olives, and His disciples asked Him, “Lord, what will be the sign of your coming and the end of the age?” Before you answer that, “What’s The First Thing,” Jesus said? Here it is, the number one sign of the end of the age and the coming of the Lord will be that deception will track people down. Because the first thing Jesus said was, “Watch out that no one deceives you!” A-pplication: I believe we are at that age right now. I believe the Lord could come at any moment. Now that’s coming from an aged preacher who has lost all of my youthful naïveté. Almost all of my youthful idealism is gone. But that does not change the fact that I believe Jesus could come in a minute, just like I did when I was a kid. Many believers during this pandemic have been outright deceived. They put government and politics above the king of kings. They said things out loud on social media that are so far removed from the...