“Oh sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth! …tell of his salvation from day to day.” – Psalm 96:1-2 (ESV).

Spring arrives in mid-March every year, although it seems someone forgot to tell the weathermen. But even if the weather is not cooperating, it’s spring. It’s time to open up the house and let the fresh air in. It’s time to put away the winter clothes and start some spring projects, waiting until the weather turns. It’s time for some spring cleaning.

Spring cleaning is a time to let go of the clutter that has accumulated over the winter. It gives you a sense of accomplishment and a fresh start. Nothing is better than walking into a sparkling clean, polished, and organized home.

Spring is an opportunity to clean and declutter our physical space, but it also is an excellent time to do a little spring cleaning of our hearts and let go of the things that separate us from God. What are we holding onto that is separating us from God? Are there habits or worries we can hand over to Christ so that our hearts can be free to focus on sharing God’s love?

When sunshine peaks through the clouds, and warm breezes bounce off the skin, it is the perfect time to do just that.   It is a matter of scrubbing away the dirt and making space for new life and growth to happen. Cleaning out any jealousy, ungratefulness, and general pessimism built up over the winter needs to go. We may not completely understand how or why our lives got so cluttered, but at least we know how to clean it up. It may never be finished, but as God continues perfecting the work He started, we can be part of it.

We do not have to go about the spiritual cleaning process alone. When we bring our burdens to the Lord, He walks alongside us. In addition, reading His Word can help us to become stronger in our faith. According to Psalm 119:105, the Word acts as a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path. Ultimately, spending time with the Lord and reading His Word are the only tools we need in spiritual spring cleaning. Through self-evaluation and prayer, God can reveal the areas of our lives where we need improvement.

Like spring cleaning, it becomes a matter of upkeep. Jesus must receive our undivided attention. We must watch for cluttering thoughts that do not align with God’s truth. We must focus on to whom we belong and sweep away any thought that tries to tell us otherwise.

This spring, let’s meet God amid our mopping, sweeping, dusting, and decluttering. Let’s invite Him to show us what needs to be cleaned up in our lives to be more like Him.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Is there a part of your life that needs some spring cleaning?
  2. What can you do this week to start that spring cleaning?


GOD made my life complete when I placed all the pieces before him.” – 2 Samuel 22:21 (MSG).

David is a paradox — a mix of the good, the bad, and the ugly. He is a great hero of the faith whose Psalms speak of passionate worship. He performed heroic deeds, including killing Goliath. In 2 Samuel 22, David speaks of a passionate relationship with God. But then we have Bathsheba, Uriah, and Absalom.

In 2 Samuel 22, David records his thoughts, which seem a bit self-serving. While David was called a man after God’s own heart, he was neither a perfect man nor a perfect king. So, how can we account for David rejoicing that he was righteous and clean before a holy God? The righteousness David experienced was righteousness given to him and anyone else who put their faith in God.

We need to remember the story of David and others when life becomes messy and when things become more than we can handle. If we could only see ourselves as God sees us. Jeremiah 31:3 says, “…I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”

Jesus is not afraid of our mess. Over and over in the Bible, we see Jesus moving and involving Himself in people’s messes and miraculously coming through for them. Whether it was a blind man beside the road (Luke 18: 35-43), a woman caught in adultery (John 8:1-11), or a lame man lying beside a pool (John 5:1-15), Jesus stepped into their situation and showed them that His love was more powerful than their problems. And He is bigger than the valley we find ourselves in today. God doesn’t love us from a distance. God stepped into our messy world to save us and set us free. He wants to be in it with us and help us despite whatever we face. By sending Jesus, God ran into the mess for us. Jesus did for us what we couldn’t do for ourselves. God didn’t just step into the world 2,000 years ago. He is ready and able to step into what we are dealing with right now.

God permits you to be yourself. You don’t have to put a tarp over the mess.  You are not too messy for God. He specializes in making old things new and transforming messes into things of beauty.  So, trust Him with your mess. Show up in His presence with your mess… your whole mess, and let Him show you what He can do. The great news is that God can do beautiful things with a broken life when you give Him all the pieces.

2 Samuel 22:21 says, “GOD made my life complete when I placed all the pieces before him.” We can lean into Him and experience true change that turns our mess into a message to others — the message that God is able.

Discussion Questions:

  1. How did He change you from mess to a masterpiece? How has God made old things new in your life? 


Because I am God, your personal God, The Holy of Israel, your Savior. I paid a huge price for you: all of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in! That’s how much you mean to me! That’s how much I love you! I’d sell off the whole world to get you back, trade the creation just for you. “So don’t be afraid: I’m with you…I want them back, every last one who bears my name, every man, woman, and child Whom I created for my glory, yes, personally formed and made each one.’”…”But you are my witnesses.” God’s Decree. “You’re my handpicked servant So that you’ll come to know and trust me, understand both that I am and who I am. Previous to me there was no such thing as a god, nor will there be after me.  I, yes I, am God. I’m the only Savior there is.”  Isaiah 43:3-11 (MSG).

Our finite, human minds will never truly understand the vastness of God’s glory, nor the fullness of His character. When we consider His infinite greatness, it can be difficult to remember that while He is incomprehensibly omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent, He is also personal and relational. He is Immanuel, “God with us” (Matthew 1:23).

People have a hard time grasping the idea of a personal God.  They see God as too abstract, big, intimidating, and beyond human understanding to have a personal relationship. They struggle to reconcile a personal God with all the evil and suffering they see in the world. It can be so easy sometimes to get lost in our circumstances and wonder if God is even there. But the reality is God is present with us, deeply invested and active in each of our lives. He is a personal God.

He has a plan for you that is good: ““ For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11). He thinks of you often:”O Lord my God, you have performed many wonders for us. Your plans for us are too numerous to list. You have no equal. If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds,  I would never come to the end of them” (Psalm 40:5). You are never alone: “What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you” (Genesis 28:15). He sustains you: Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken” (Psalm 55:22 NASB). His knowledge of you is intimate:  O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord” (Psalm 139:1-4). And finally He dwells within you: Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you” (1 Corinthians 3:16 NKJV)?

God is with you. Not only is God with you, but God knows your name, your pain, your problems, your doubts, and your fears. God knows your temptations, and God knows which ones you are yielding to. God knows the way out, how to restore joy to your life, and how to help you transcend whatever you are facing. You can’t get more personal than that.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Share when God became personal for you. How do you know God wants a relationship with you? What are some ways that God reveals Himself personally to you?


“Easter was when Hope in person surprised the whole world by coming forward from the future into the present.” —N.T. Wright,

It should be a day for celebration like none other.

It’s obvious why Easter should be celebrated. Jesus Christ’s resurrection defeated death and gave mankind a pathway to redemption. That’s certainly cause for celebration. But with every passing year, does Easter become a little less important to the place we can take this special day for granted? Is it just a day where the church is packed, we eat a big meal and some chocolate bunnies?

Many of us have heard the gospel countless times. Many of us have heard that the Son of God was sent as a servant, and although He was flawless, He took on the punishment we deserve. We can finally be forgiven because He was a perfect sacrifice and suffered death on the cross. Three days later, His tomb was empty. He defeated death and was resurrected from the grave. We cannot completely commemorate what Christ did for each of us on that day.

The resurrection of Jesus is not just an addendum to the Calvary story. It is not merely something that happened as a result of Calvary. Our understanding of Jesus is foundational to our faith. Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:17, “And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins.”Christianity could not exist if Jesus never conquered death, and His resurrection separates Him from any other religious leader. Jesus prophesied His death and resurrection and sealed His promises by accomplishing those two things.

What would our lives be like without Jesus? What kind of future would we look forward to if He hadn’t intervened on our behalf? Sometimes, it can be far too easy for us to become complacent in understanding what He has accomplished on our behalf. We’re so used to the benefits He brings to our lives that we don’t consider the mess we’d be in without Him.

Jesus isn’t just a “good guy” — He’s our Savior, worthy of all praise and attention. Fundamentally, our Lord’s message was Himself. He did not come merely to preach a Gospel; He is that Gospel. He did not come only to give bread; He said, “I am the bread of life.” He did not come merely to shed light; He said, “I am the light.” He did not come only to show the door; He said, “I am the door.” He did not come merely to name a shepherd; He said: “I am the shepherd.” He did not come only to point the way; He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.”

How can we take Easter or our Savior for granted?

Discussion Questions:

  1. Who do you say Jesus is? What difference does this make in how you live each day?? 


“One of the most breathtaking concepts in all of Scripture is the revelation that God knows each of us personally and that we are in His mind both day and night. There is simply no way to comprehend the full implications of His love by the King of kings and Lord of lords. He is all-powerful and all-knowing, majestic and holy, from everlasting to everlasting. Why would He care about us—about our needs, our welfare, our fears? We have been discussing situations in which God doesn’t make sense. His concern for us mere mortals is the most inexplicable of all.” ― James C. Dobson.

Culture has crowned many kings. Henry Ford was the king of automakers. Michael Jackson is the king of pop. Richard Petty is the king of Nascar. Michael Jordan is the king of basketball.

The Bible speaks volumes about kings and lords. The words “kings” and “lords” are mentioned thousands of times in Scripture, many representing God. But “King of kings and Lord of lords” appears only three times. Three passages direct our attention to the fact that Jesus Christ is King of kings and Lord of lords. They are 1 Timothy 6:15: “For, At just the right time Christ will be revealed from heaven by the blessed and only almighty God, the King of all kings and Lord of all lords.” Revelation 17:14 says, “Together they will go to war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will defeat them because he is Lord of all lords and King of all kings. And his called and chosen and faithful ones will be with him.” And Revelation 19:16: “On his robe at his thigh was written this title: King of all kings and Lord of all lords.”

Given that Jesus rose from the dead, it becomes apparent who the King of Kings and Lord of Lords is. And we celebrate our risen King each Easter. Jesus really is King — over all. Jesus’ kingship is universal and absolute. You don’t elect Him or validate His reign. Nor is He a king whom you can ignore indefinitely.

The idea of Jesus being King of kings and Lord of lords means that there is no higher authority. His reign over all things is absolute and inviolable. God raised Him from the dead and placed Him over all things, “Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church. And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself” (Ephesians 1:21–23).

For many people, Easter is simply an event, a holiday. But for Christians, every day is resurrection day. Why? Because we worship, we love, and we live every day in the presence of a risen, living Lord Jesus Christ. So, every day is an Easter celebration for us. Every day is resurrection day.

On Easter, we need to honor and worship our King. We should be filled with awe at His majesty, authority, and power. Jesus, who loves us, deserves to be revered as the exalted King.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What does King of Kings and Lord of lords mean to you? 
  2. How can we better serve Christ the King this week?


“But it was the Lord’s good plan to crush him and cause him grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have many descendants. He will enjoy a long life, and the Lord’s good plan will prosper in his hands.” –  Isaiah 53:10 (NIV)

The cross has become an icon. It’s everywhere, on everything. We wear it around our necks, hang it on our walls as decoration, and place it on the side of the road to memorialize lives lost. The cross is omnipresent in our culture, but do we truly grasp its power and implications?

In Biblical times, the cross caused great distress. It was the symbol of ultimate torture and cruelty—human crucifixion. The writers of the Bible didn’t include the horrific details about what happened to the human body during crucifixion because they didn’t need to. Those who lived in fear of this barbaric death penalty knew all too well its effects. Besides, no words could adequately describe the experience of crucifixion.

As we reflect on the cross, we find ourselves both in awe and surprised by how much of the cross we don’t understand. There is a line in the song “Here I am to Worship,” written by Tim Hughes where it says, “I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross.” Yes, we know Jesus is our Redeemer, but do we truly know the magnitude of the cost? I don’t think we can even come up with a figure or currency to match the price that was paid to redeem us.

The message of the cross is that we don’t have to possess any special qualifications. There are no hoops to jump through. You are invited whether you are rich or poor, young or old, no matter your race, gender, or the sin in your heart. Jesus sacrificed His life for all who would come to Him. Jesus destroyed all barriers so everyone could come to the foot of the cross. 

The cross is the greatest exhibition of love ever seen. When we come to the cross we find refuge, hope, safety, and joy. The power of the cross allows us to join with Paul and say: “My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). That is the power of the cross.

Is there anything we can offer Jesus as we stand at the cross?  We can offer Him our love and devotion. We can bring praise and worship. We can come to the cross with a renewed appreciation for His incredible love and a renewed commitment to sharing His love and His story with the people we interact with.

So, understanding the cross fully is nearly impossible, but if that’s making you worry, don’t. It’s meant to show how an indescribable God lavished an indescribable love on us by hanging Himself upon a cross so that we would be set free.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What is the hardest part of the cross for you to understand? Why?
  2. What can we do this week to better understand and appreciate the significance of the cross?


“He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” ― Matthew 26:39.

Think of a time when a crisis arose, and you could not do anything about it. It may have felt like your only option was to sit back and do nothing. A person on death row lives in a state of constant uncertainty over when they will be executed, but with the knowledge that they will die in a calculated, planned manner, barring a miracle. Jesus knew when He would die; even worse, He knew how He would die.

The night before His crucifixion, Jesus went to the garden of Gethsemane with His disciples. He said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray” (Matthew 26:36). Jesus knew His time had arrived. He knew what was coming. “Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them. “Who are you looking for?” he asked” (John 18:4).

Judas came along with soldiers to arrest Jesus. As soon as He was arrested, all His friends and disciples fled into the darkness. The next few hours were a blur of beatings, mockings, and whippings with leather thongs tipped with balls of metal and shards of bone. Jesus’ skin was flayed off, and blood dripped off His head from the long thorns in His crown.

He also suffered the humiliation of numerous illegal mock trials before Annas (John 18:13), Caiaphas, and the religious leaders (Matthew 26:57–68); and Roman trials before Pontius Pilate, Herod, and Pilate again. The people shouted to release Barabbas instead of Jesus (Matthew 27:15-31). Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again. But they kept shouting, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” Pilate, who knew Jesus was innocent, finally bent to the crowd’s will and sent Jesus to the cross (Luke 23:1–25).

Through all this, Jesus never fought back. Although He could have called down lightning to destroy them all or dispatched an army of angels from Heaven to wipe them all out, He just took every physical punishment and every false accusation.

The trials we face in our lives never approach those that Jesus faced. But we have the same recourse that He did when faced with trials: prayer. When we face trials, Jesus urges us to keep praying. It may be that we will not get the outcome we desire, but we can learn from Jesus to be open with God about our innermost thoughts, boldly asking Him for what we want while at the same time recognizing that He loves us and can strengthen us even in trials.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Christ remained calm, and His speech was gracious to those who persecuted Him. How does our speech represent Christ to the world?
  2. Jesus spoke confidently about His identity before Pilate and the Jewish leaders. How can we live confidently as Christians to display Christ to those around us?


At this point many of his disciples turned away and deserted him. Then Jesus turned to the Twelve and asked, “Are you also going to leave?” – John 6:66-67.

In John, Chapter 6, Jesus is speaking with His disciples—not just the twelve, but a large group that had begun to follow Him by this time. Jesus had miraculously fed the five thousand by turning just a few loaves and fishes into baskets of food. The disciples and the crowds were overwhelmed with what they had experienced. The danger that Jesus was aware of and spoke to was the people following Him for the wrong reasons.

The Bible tells us many of them left Him. They were not going to follow Jesus. They wanted to follow Jesus according to their ideas about Jesus, but not Jesus according to Jesus. At that point, Jesus turned to the twelve disciples, those closest to Him, and asked: “Are you also going to leave?”

If you were to sit down one afternoon and evening and read the New Testament straight through, you would discover that it is written about a single theme—and that theme is captured in Jesus’ question, “Are you also going to leave?” That’s just another way of asking, “Are you loyal?” Are you going to be part of something bigger than yourselves, where everyone has a role, has a job to do, and has a way to serve?

The purpose of the Christian life is to live in service of God for God’s mission in the world. You were made to have an impact. You are made for more; you are made to do great things, and you are born to impact the world. You were made to have an impact for Jesus. That’s why we’re here.

We all have gifts. It doesn’t matter how well you know the Bible or how long you’ve been a Christian. There’s no probationary period before you can make an impact for God. It doesn’t matter how smart you are, how outgoing you are, or how many people you know. It doesn’t matter how talented you think you are. If you’re a believer, God has given you gifts to serve Him and build up His church.

Don’t fall for the lie that you have nothing to offer. Many people don’t serve because of this, but it is not a valid reason. Everyone has something to offer, some way to contribute. The church’s pastors and musicians get a lot of the credit, but the scaffolding that holds the church up are people faithfully and humbly serving behind the scenes.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Is there something keeping you from serving?


“Life’s most urgent question is: what are you doing for others?” – Martin Luther King jr. .

Looking around, we see a world full of needs, and there is only so much we can do. It would seem more practical and logical to have everyone take care of themselves first. That eliminates the concerns of who best to serve and how best to serve them. There is one problem with that idea. God wants us to serve others.

In John 13, Jesus gathered with His disciples just before Passover, and He knew His time with them was growing short. He wanted to teach them something important, and He did it in a way that made a lasting impact. Jesus wrapped a towel around Himself, filled a basin with water and washed their feet.

In Jesus’ time, washing someone’s feet was the work of a servant. By this time, the disciples knew that Jesus was Lord, so for Him to do the work of a lowly servant was shocking. But He washed all their feet so that He could serve them. Remember that Jesus is the King of Kings, the Messiah, fully God yet fully man, the creator of the universe, and He chose at that moment to humble Himself so He could serve His followers. And Jesus’ desire to serve us didn’t end with washing the disciples’ feet. His whole life, death, and resurrection testify to His desire to serve us with grace and love. Now, this doesn’t mean that you should go out and literally wash people’s feet. It means that following Jesus means serving others.

Many people believe that being “called” by God is something only missionaries, pastors, church elders, and other church leaders experience. But the Bible says everyone is called to serve God by serving others. “For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love” (Galatians 5:13).

We need to pause and remember that we are not saved by serving but for serving.  God is more interested in why you serve others than how well you serve them. He’s always looking at your heart, serving willingly and eagerly out of love for Jesus and gratitude for all He’s done for you.

What is the Lord stirring in your heart to do this week? Ask for His wisdom to see things through His eyes. Do you need to be praying for someone? Is God putting on your heart to send a note of encouragement? Have you wanted to help with cleaning at the church or maybe obeying that step of faith to lead a small group? Or maybe it is the gift of hospitality because the dining room or kitchen table in a believer’s home is one of the most impactful locations for ministry. Or maybe He is asking you to serve in the children’s ministry. Whatever the Lord is preparing your heart for, remember that you serve Him by serving others.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Our devotion to God is illustrated, demonstrated, and authenticated by serving others.  Agree or disagree?
  2. What hurdles do you have serving others?
  3. What must you do, beginning today, to acquire the authentic heart of a servant?


“Don’t just count your blessings. be the blessing other people count on.” – Anonymous.

Blessed to be a blessing is a Biblical principle that teaches us something about God’s expectations for each of us. God blesses us because He loves us, and so we can be a blessing to others. The blessings God gives us are intended to be shared.

Paul teaches the church in Corinth, “All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us….” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4 MSG). Proverbs 11:25 teaches that “the generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.” Jump into the New Testament, and you will find more verses like this such as Matthew 5:7; “God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy.”

We live in a world of negativity, heartbreak, and turmoil, and people desperately seek blessings. As Christians, we are called to be that blessing. However, we cannot indeed bless others if we do not understand how blessed we are by accepting the blessings God has given us.

It can be easy to become blinded to God’s blessings because of the frantic pace of life. That is why the Word of God is so important. The more time we spend reading and reflecting on God’s Word, the more we see God’s love and how He is constantly working for our good. When we fully understand how blessed we are, the more likely we are to share those blessings with others.

Taking it a step further, it is a privilege to serve and bless people. Have you ever wondered if people feel blessed when they step into your life? What constitutes a life of blessing?

Being a blessing means living out our faith in a way that positively impacts the people around us. It means showing love and compassion, being honest and sincere, and doing what we can to make someone’s day. Ultimately, this makes us truly happy when we can make someone else’s life just a little bit better.

So whether it’s taking the time to listen attentively, lending an encouraging word, or simply doing something kind for no reason, letting others know that we care about them is one of the most valuable things we can do.

A hoarded blessing won’t ever be enjoyed as richly as a shared one. Using your gift to meet someone else’s needs glorifies God by demonstrating His grace at work in your life. Don’t let His generous provisions end with you. Pass them on and discover the joy of a never-ending cycle of blessings.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Write down how you have been blessed, and thank God for those blessings.
  2. When blessed, you have the resources to be a blessing. What would it (or does it) look like to implement this reality into your life?