The Journey with Ron Moore

How do the children of divorce process the confusing and conflicting emotions that tear at their hearts? What can you say to them that will restore a lost relationship and keep them close to God?

With those questions in view, Ron Moore continues a conversation with special guest Gretchen.  In the story of her troubled marriage, you’ll learn how God shows up in the most unexpected ways.

Devotion Text

Isaiah 50:10

Who among you fears the LORD and obeys the word of his servant? Let the one who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the LORD and rely on their God.

Discovering God’s will is often one of the most challenging things a believer faces. God’s revealed will in Scripture is clear – “Do this,” “Don’t do that.” But God’s individual will is not always so straightforward. Many believers who desire to follow hard after God struggle with questions such as:

  • Is this the person God wants me to marry?
  • Is this the college God wants me to attend?
  • Is this the calling God has placed on my life?
  • Is this the job God wants me to take?
  • Is this the place where God wants me to live?
  • Is this the home God wants us to buy or rent?

Now granted, some believers make life-altering decisions without ever asking, “Is this God’s will?” But for those who are intent on following God with their whole heart, these questions, and many more, are ones for which we seek God’s specific direction. And sometimes, as we seek God’s will, we feel like the person who “walks in the dark, who has no light.”

Today’s passage reminds us that God does not intend for the “dark path” to be confusing or permanent. He uses dark stretches to develop and deepen our faith. He calls us to obey Him, even with our questions, and trust Him to open and close the appropriate doors. He calls us to rely on Him for wisdom and discernment, for strength and peace. There will be times when the path seems dark. But these are the times God uses to ask us a question, “Can you trust Me?” Can you?

Father, for all those walking through a stretch of path where there seems to be no light, remind them today that You will never leave or forsake them. Remind us all that dark paths cause us to trust and rely on You. And remind us that when we trust You in the darkness, we see You more clearly in the light. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

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Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

A Man and His Marriage – Part 2

Devotion Text

Proverbs 18:24

One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

Companions are a dime a dozen. Just provide the external hooks of good food and a game to watch, and you have all kinds of companions hanging around. Add the social externals of position, status, and wealth, and the room is crowded. Even Christians like the “many companions” thing. All the externals mentioned above mixed in with a little “Jesus” or “church” or “Bible” and, all of a sudden, you have a Cool Christian Club. Evangelical name droppers love to be in the CCC!

A friend, on the other hand, is rare. They hang around without the external hooks. When the food is gone and the sports season is over, a friend still shows up. When you are no longer the CEO; a friend still loves to be seen with you. When you downsize from the deck and pool to just the deck, a friend still helps flip the burgers. When things go belly up and you have to trade in the Porsche for a Pontiac, a friend still calls “Shotgun!”

Look around. Be discerning. One of these days the good food will be gone. One of these days the money will be spent. One of these days a Cool Christian Bible Study will not be enough. One of these days people who just hang around will not be enough; you’re going to need someone to stick close. That day is coming. Better find that friend now.

Father, help us understand the difference between a companion and a friend. Help us develop lasting relationships today so that we will not be alone tomorrow. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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This Week on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Vital Signs

Devotion Text

Psalm 89:48

Who can live and not see death, or who can escape the power of the grave?

Several years ago there was a Time magazine with the cover story, How To Die. Describing the last days of his mom and dad, the story was written by Joe Klein, I have no problem with the topic. But I do find it tragic that Time is explaining how to die without addressing what happens next.

Scripture is clear that everyone is going to die. The writer of the Hebrews tells us that everyone is destined to die (Hebrews 9:27). No one has power over the time of their death (Ecclesiastes 8:8). But Scripture is also clear that death is not final. Following death, judgment comes (Hebrews 9:27). And for the believer, the Judge is our Savior, who is there to welcome us home.

If you are walking through the last days with someone whom you love, I encourage you to talk openly and honestly about Jesus. Let them know how much Jesus loves them. Let them know that Jesus died for their sins on the cross. Use the time to explain how they can know Jesus and be sure of what happens when they close their eyes in death. Let’s not leave it to our culture to teach us how to die. God’s Word is the only place we find the promise of eternal life. Here are some passages to read and reflect upon.

John 5:24

Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.

John 8:51

Very truly I tell you, whoever obeys my word will never see death.

John 11:25-26

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.”

Father, thank You that even when we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we don’t have to fear. Thank You for being with us to give us the courage and comfort we need to cross over from death to life through Jesus. In His name we pray. Amen.

 

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The Great Adventure of Prayer – Part 3

Devotion Text

Psalm 34:18

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Broken hearts come in many forms. Some are crushed by a sixth-grade break-up; others when he walks out after twenty-five years. Some come from the rejection of a dear friend; others by reckless words that pierce like a sword. Some hearts are broken when the job is lost; others when the retirement gift doesn’t quite justify the years of sacrifice. Sometimes kids go astray or go away. Sometimes loneliness sits heavy on the heart. Sometimes discouragement settles in, and you’re not sure when or why it came. Sometimes you come to the crushing realization that what you desperately wanted is just not going to happen. Anyone who lives this life will experience a broken heart, that’s for sure.

And there is another thing that’s for sure – the Lord will be right there with you. God is always close. If you are a follower of Jesus, He lives in you! But there is something about a broken heart that highlights His presence. There’s something about a crushed spirit that amplifies His voice. Funny, isn’t it? When our hearts hurt, we hear Him more distinctly. When our spirit is crushed, we see Him more clearly.

It’s not like we go out looking for a broken heart or excitedly anticipate a crushed spirit. But they will come – unforeseen, uninvited, unwelcomed. The Lord is close with comfort. The Lord is there with hope. He never lets go of His children. He saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Father, thank You for the promise from Your word. Thank You for being close to the brokenhearted.  In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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This Week on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Worshiping God

Devotion Text

Numbers 14:24

But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it.

Note the word “wholeheartedly” in today’s passage. It describes Caleb, a man who followed hard after God. When everyone else was struck by fear, Caleb stood his ground and obeyed without reservation or hesitation. How does one acquire such a full-out faith?

At this point in history, Israel was only two years out of Egypt. Caleb had lived 38 of his 40 years in slavery. No doubt he prayed that God would deliver his people. And then one day Moses showed up. Caleb saw the plagues, experienced the Passover, marched through the Red Sea, and then turned to watch the walls of water envelop the Egyptians. Caleb was there at the giving of the Ten Commandments when the earth shook with the presence of God. He gathered the manna day after day as God supplied the food. Caleb had seen God at work.

How does one acquire such a full-out faith? I believe the answer is this: a firsthand experience of God’s power and faithfulness. You cannot live a wholehearted faith just by hearing the stories of God’s great work. You have to experience it up close and personal. You will never feel God’s power until you are in a position to need it. You will never experience God’s faithfulness until you are in a position where the only thing left is to trust him. 

Father, life is too comfortable for many of us to place ourselves in a position where we must trust in you to provide. Help us realize that meaningful faith is not developed on the leftover experiences of others. Help us to put ourselves in situations that stretch us and make us depend on you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 

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Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Grace of Handling Conflict

Devotion Text

John 20:1-8

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!” So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed.

There are emotions that run our hearts ragged. Like John, we reach the place where Jesus is, and we hesitate to go in. Like Peter, we barge ahead but leave with unanswered questions. Like Mary, we stand outside broken, fearful, and weeping. But when the resurrected Lord calls our name, His voice is unmistakable.

There are sounds that distract us. “Peter, Peter, what do you see in there?” “John, look for yourself!” “Let’s go tell the others.” “Woman, why are you crying?” But when the resurrected Lord calls our name, His voice cuts through the noise.

There are places that distance us from each other. Mary went alone to the tomb but found it empty. The younger John outran Peter. The bolder Peter went directly inside the tomb. Both Peter and John hurried back to the others. Mary stayed alone, catching her breath. But when the resurrected Lord calls our name, we slow down and stand still.

There are sights that overload our senses. From television to the billboards on the way to work, from the computer screen to the newspaper, these put our brains on visual overload. Like Mary, we look right at Jesus and miss all that He is doing in our lives and the world around us. But when the resurrected Lord calls our name, He becomes our singular focus.

Are your emotions bouncing off the wall? Are all the sounds distracting you? Is the hurried pace isolating you from others? Are you visually exhausted? Close your eyes. Jesus is alive. The resurrected Lord is here. Listen to His voice.

Lord Jesus, in a world distracting me at every turn, help me hear Your voice. Help me to live in the power of Your resurrection. In Your name. Amen. 


 

Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Community: The Most Neglected Part

Devotion Text

John 16:12-15

I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.

The ministry of the Holy Spirit is all-encompassing. He teaches, encourages, assures, prays for, and empowers us. He is always there to give us exactly what we need when we need it. Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would “guide [us] into all truth.” In his letter to the Romans, the apostle Paul said that those who are guided by the Spirit are the children of God (Romans 8:13-14).

In Scripture, some instructions for our lives are recorded in black and white. These truths are specifically revealed. However, there are times when we are confronted with a decision and have no specific Scriptural guidance. How can we know what we are supposed to do when the answer is not clearly laid out?

It is the Spirit who directs us when we are confronted with these types of decisions. He is our Counselor who opens our eyes to see the right path to take. It is His ministry to lead us into all truth. David said, “I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me” (Psalm 16:7). Even when we close our eyes in rest, the Spirit speaks to our hearts.

Father, thank You for the guiding ministry of the Holy Spirit. May I seek and follow His counsel. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Have questions about the Holy Spirit? For a free brochure about the Spirit and His work in the believer’s life, e-mail us at prayer@ronmoore.org.


 

Today on The Journey Broadcast:

 

Jacob – Part 1

As when a maritime fog obscures a firm shore, taking your eyes off Jesus can result in a slow drift into dangerous waters.

Today, from the book of Hebrews, Ron Moore urges you to pay close attention to the anchor of your soul.

Psalm 84:8-12  
Hear my prayer, LORD God Almighty; listen to me, God of Jacob. Look on our shield, O God; look with favor on your anointed one. Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. LORD Almighty, blessed is the one who trusts in you.

The Lord God is a sun. The sun is a revealer. It extinguishes the darkness and allows us to see the world around us. Even when it’s overcast, the sun still provides light through the clouds. In the same way, God, the true Light, reveals the path we should take. When our lives are clouded with confusion, pain, or grief, His light still shines through.

The Lord God is a shield. We do many things to protect ourselves—insurance, retirement funds, healthy diets, exercise. All these things are good. But at end of the day God is the only true source of protection.

No good thing does He withhold…. A “blameless” walk does not mean perfect. It describes a person whose journey is on God’s revealed path. Those who walk close to God experience His constant presence and great blessings. He never holds out on what is best for us.

Father, thank You for Your light that shows me where to go, Your shield that protects me every moment, Your presence on the journey, and the great blessings that You provide all along the way. In Jesus’ name. Amen.  

Psalm 55:1-8  
For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskil of David.

Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea; hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught because of what my enemy is saying, because of the threats of the wicked; for they bring down suffering on me and assail me in their anger. My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen on me. Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me. I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest. I would flee far away and stay in the desert; I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.” 

Have you ever been betrayed by a close friend? The pain, disappointment, and confusion are hard to put into words. Shots from an enemy are painful enough but when a friend draws back the bow and lets the arrow fly…that’s a heart wound.  

In today’s psalm a close friend has wounded David (see Ps. 55:13-14). He is distraught. His heart is anguished. He is overtaken with “fear and trembling” and overwhelmed by “horror.” He wishes that he could take on the wings of a bird and fly far away from it all.

Have you been there? Maybe you are there today. The harsh reality of life is that friends, even close friends, will disappoint. But there is one who will never let us down. If you feel alone you are not because Jesus is the friend that will never leave nor forsake you. He will always stay by your side…no matter what. 

Lord Jesus, I pray for those who feel alone today. Warm their heart by Your Spirit. Remind them of Your great love. Allow them to feel Your arms wrapped around them. Encourage the lonely by reminding them that they are never alone. In Your name. Amen.

Psalm 46:8-11

Come and see what the LORD has done, the desolations he has brought on the earth. He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth. He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the shields with fire. He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

When your schedule is insane…Be still and know that I am God.

When the kids are driving you crazy… Be still and know that I am God.

When your job is pressure-packed… Be still and know that I am God.

When your heart is broken… Be still and know that I am God.

When a friend disappoints you… Be still and know that I am God.

When the news is not good… Be still and know that I am God.

When the treatment is wearing you out… Be still and know that I am God.

When you didn’t get what you wanted… Be still and know that I am God.

When you got what you didn’t want… Be still and know that I am God.

When you are discouraged… Be still and know that I am God.

When you feel alone… Be still and know that I am God.

Close your eyes, clear your mind, and calm your heart. Be still and know that He is the all-knowing, all-powerful, all-loving God.

Psalm 34:17-22  

The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all; he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken. Evil will slay the wicked; the foes of the righteous will be condemned. The LORD will rescue his servants; no one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.

Broken hearts come in many forms. And we all will at some point experience a broken heart; that’s for sure. Some are crushed by a spouse who walks out on the marriage. Heartache comes from the rejection of a dear friend or family member; by reckless words that pierce like a sword. Some hearts are broken when the job is lost; others when the retirement watch doesn’t quite justify the years of sacrifice. Sometimes kids go astray. Sometimes loneliness sits heavy on the heart. Or discouragement settles in and you’re not sure when or why it came. Sometimes you come to the harsh realization that what you desperately wanted is just not going to happen.

And there is another thing that’s for sure—the Lord will be right there with you. God is always close. If you are a follower of Jesus, He lives in you! But there is something about a broken heart that highlights His presence. There’s something about a crushed spirit that amplifies His voice. When our hearts hurt we hear God more clearly.  

It’s not like we go out looking for a broken heart or excitedly anticipate a crushed spirit. But they will come—unforeseen, uninvited, unwelcomed.  And when they do the Lord is close with comfort. The Lord is there with hope. He never lets go of His children. He saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Father, thank You for being close to the brokenhearted. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Psalm 26:8-12  

LORD, I love the house where you live, the place where your glory dwells. Do not take away my soul along with sinners, my life with those who are bloodthirsty, in whose hands are wicked schemes, whose right hands are full of bribes. I lead a blameless life; deliver me and be merciful to me. My feet stand on level ground; in the great congregation I will praise the LORD.

A few summers ago a friend took my son and me fishing for walleye. Twenty miles out on Lake Erie our boat was bounced around by “three-footers” and “four-footers” as we steadied ourselves to reel in the catches from four hundred yards out. We were thankful to be hit only by the waves and not by seasickness. And, as much fun as the fishing was, I’ll admit it was a good feeling to step off the boat and be standing on level ground.

David was a warrior. He knew the sensation of shaky footing. Hiking through the rocky terrain, climbing up steep hills, sleeping in tents on the hard ground, David and his men felt the stability and confidence that comes when your feet are standing on solid, level ground.

Today you may feel that your life is being bounced about by “four-footers.” You may feel like you are on a rocky climb that is challenging your strength or on a treacherous decline where with each step you are in danger of slipping. Accept David’s invitation to enter into God’s house—the place where His glory dwells. Take a break from the struggle, close your eyes, and invite the Father to calm you, refresh you, and give you strength for today’s journey. Whatever your circumstance, you will be standing on level ground enveloped by the presence of the living God.

Father, I thank You for the glory of Your presence. Thank You for delivering me to level ground. Help me to keep standing firm.  In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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