What do you think is the most common command in the Bible? To love more? Hate less? Actually, God’s most frequent instruction to us is to fear not. There are 365 “fear not’s” in the Bible, one for everyday of the year!

Over and over in Scripture, we are encouraged to stop worrying, start trusting, stop fearing and start risking.   In today’s passage, Jesus tells us that the way to stop worrying is to put Him first. He says, “But seek his Kingdom, and these things will be added to you as well.” (Luke 12:31)

What are you worrying about today? Health? Finances? Relationships? To worry about these things is like trying to rock really fast in a rocking chair… It takes a lot of effort, but doesn’t get you anywhere!

So how do we go about seeking His Kingdom and putting Him first? A good place to start is to give Him the first part of everyday. Spending some time in God’s word, just like you are now, will make a tremendous difference in your attitude and decisions throughout the day. If you struggle with consistency, and we all do at times, make that daily time with God a priority. Your commitment to join us in this 40-Day Journey is a great beginning to a lifelong, life-changing habit!

Take a few moments to name your fears. Identify them one by one, and then leave them at the foot of the cross. Jesus’ outstretched hand is offering you peace and purpose to replace your fears. All He asks is that you seek Him first.

Bible Reading: Luke 11:1-54 (NIV)

Jesus’ Teaching on Prayer
11 One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”
2 He said to them, “When you pray, say:
“‘Father,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
3 Give us each day our daily bread.
4 Forgive us our sins,
for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation.’”
5 Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6 a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ 7 And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.
9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
11 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Jesus and Beelzebul
14 Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute. When the demon left, the man who had been mute spoke, and the crowd was amazed. 15 But some of them said, “By Beelzebul, the prince of demons, he is driving out demons.” 16 Others tested him by asking for a sign from heaven.
17 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them: “Any kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and a house divided against itself will fall. 18 If Satan is divided against himself, how can his kingdom stand? I say this because you claim that I drive out demons by Beelzebul. 19 Now if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your followers drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 20 But if I drive out demons by the finger of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
21 “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are safe. 22 But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, he takes away the armor in which the man trusted and divides up his plunder.
23 “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.
24 “When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ 25 When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. 26 Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first.”
27 As Jesus was saying these things, a woman in the crowd called out, “Blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you.”
28 He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”

The Sign of Jonah
29 As the crowds increased, Jesus said, “This is a wicked generation. It asks for a sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah. 30 For as Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites, so also will the Son of Man be to this generation. 31 The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with the people of this generation and condemn them, for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon’s wisdom; and now something greater than Solomon is here. 32 The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and now something greater than Jonah is here.

The Lamp of the Body
33 “No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light. 34 Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are healthy, your whole body also is full of light. But when they are unhealthy, your body also is full of darkness. 35 See to it, then, that the light within you is not darkness. 36 Therefore, if your whole body is full of light, and no part of it dark, it will be just as full of light as when a lamp shines its light on you.”

Woes on the Pharisees and the Experts in the Law
37 When Jesus had finished speaking, a Pharisee invited him to eat with him; so he went in and reclined at the table. 38 But the Pharisee was surprised when he noticed that Jesus did not first wash before the meal.
39 Then the Lord said to him, “Now then, you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. 40 You foolish people! Did not the one who made the outside make the inside also? 41 But now as for what is inside you—be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you.
42 “Woe to you Pharisees, because you give God a tenth of your mint, rue and all other kinds of garden herbs, but you neglect justice and the love of God. You should have practiced the latter without leaving the former undone.
43 “Woe to you Pharisees, because you love the most important seats in the synagogues and respectful greetings in the marketplaces.
44 “Woe to you, because you are like unmarked graves, which people walk over without knowing it.”
45 One of the experts in the law answered him, “Teacher, when you say these things, you insult us also.”
46 Jesus replied, “And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them.
47 “Woe to you, because you build tombs for the prophets, and it was your ancestors who killed them. 48 So you testify that you approve of what your ancestors did; they killed the prophets, and you build their tombs. 49 Because of this, God in his wisdom said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and others they will persecute.’ 50 Therefore this generation will be held responsible for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning of the world, 51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, this generation will be held responsible for it all.
52 “Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering.”
53 When Jesus went outside, the Pharisees and the teachers of the law began to oppose him fiercely and to besiege him with questions, 54 waiting to catch him in something he might say.

Bible Reading: Luke 12:1-59 (NIV)

Warnings and Encouragements
12 Meanwhile, when a crowd of many thousands had gathered, so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples, saying: “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 2 There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. 3 What you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in the ear in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.
4 “I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. 5 But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. 6 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. 7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
8 “I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. 9 But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned before the angels of God. 10 And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.
11 “When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.”

The Parable of the Rich Fool
13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”
14 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” 15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”
16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’
18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’
20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’
21 “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”

Do Not Worry
22 Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?
27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.
32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Watchfulness
35 “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, 36 like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. 37 It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. 38 It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the middle of the night or toward daybreak. 39 But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. 40 You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”
41 Peter asked, “Lord, are you telling this parable to us, or to everyone?”
42 The Lord answered, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time? 43 It will be good for that servant whom the master finds doing so when he returns. 44 Truly I tell you, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 45 But suppose the servant says to himself, ‘My master is taking a long time in coming,’ and he then begins to beat the other servants, both men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk. 46 The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the unbelievers.
47 “The servant who knows the master’s will and does not get ready or does not do what the master wants will be beaten with many blows. 48 But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.

Not Peace but Division
49 “I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 But I have a baptism to undergo, and what constraint I am under until it is completed! 51 Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. 52 From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. 53 They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

Interpreting the Times
54 He said to the crowd: “When you see a cloud rising in the west, immediately you say, ‘It’s going to rain,’ and it does. 55 And when the south wind blows, you say, ‘It’s going to be hot,’ and it is. 56 Hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky. How is it that you don’t know how to interpret this present time?

57 “Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right? 58 As you are going with your adversary to the magistrate, try hard to be reconciled on the way, or your adversary may drag you off to the judge, and the judge turn you over to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison. 59 I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.”

 

 

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  1. There was a time that I wanted to get a scooter so badly; it was all I could think about. I rode a scooter when I was on vacation, and I was hooked. It was only a small 50CC so I couldn’t really enjoy all that a scooter had to offer. II mean when I went up a hill I would literally have to push it up with both of my feet, because it didn’t have enough power to get me up the hill. I wasn’t the only one doing it either. After a few months of talking to my husband, I finally convinced him too buy me a scooter. I started out with a 250CC while it had the get up and go; it still didn’t have enough power to climb any of the hills, we had round our place. I would start out at sixty miles an hour, by the time I climbed a hill I was doing maybe twenty.
    My husband was worried I would get ran over, so we went to buy a bigger scooter, a 600 CC. Now let me tell you I never paid attention to the road until I was on the scooter. The things we take for granted when we are in a car, you don’t do that when you’re in a scooter/motorcycle. For instance, if there is a groove in the street from workers it will pull you into it, and you feel hopeless until you can get out; if there are larger rocks, trash, glass and rubber on the road it can cause you to wreck. I never felt as comfortable as I would like, driving the scooter, because the fear was always there. One time we decided we would take a trip to Oklahoma City from Austin, Texas it was a six-hour trip by car, but double that on a motorcycle.
    We started off with the day being nice and sunny, a little windy just another thing to be afraid of. Then as we pulled into Waco it started to rain. We had to stop for rain gear now. I looked back now, and think to myself why in the world didn’t I just turn around, and go back since I was only an hour and a half away. I didn’t though we kept going, after the rain slowed down, not stopped but slowed down. It was cold and miserable. The rain on the road made for just one more thing to be scared for. By the time we hit Hillsboro, I was nervous, and scared of what was around the corner. Every time we stopped, I breathed a sigh of relief.
    By the time we crossed over in to Oklahoma, it was two o’ clock in the morning; we were still over two hours away. I felt we were never going to get there. The rain began to pour again, and I never wanted to get on that silly scooter again. We pushed forward, and made it to Oklahoma City about 4:30 a.m. or twelve hours after we left Austin. I forgot to tell you how sore my bottom was, it was numb from being on the road so long. Now this is no the mode of transportation I would recommend to everyone to get around on, but it’s what I wanted. The next day after we rested, it was time to head back. The weather was going to be perfect, and we were heading out early in the morning so we wouldn’t be on the road in the evening. I was grateful that we each were riding bikes, so we were more visible. I was shaking in my boots. At one point I even told my friends, I wished we could just load these up,and drive them back. My brother offered to take us back, but there was something in me that wanted to say,
    I drove from Oklahoma City to Austin and back. Now how silly is that, wanting to be able to say you drove so far on a motorcycle. We got on the road, and headed back. I was nervous the whole way, the wind threw me around several times, and the road was slick enough that it made the bike hard to handle. We got off of the highway on our exit, and I was never so happy to be in one place again. I should have had a lot of fun, but I was so uneasy about the whole trip, I couldn’t. I wanted the scooter gone, and I didn’t care if I ever rode it again. Thank you, Jesus, you allowed me to have what we wanted. But sometimes it’s only a good idea, not a good plan, and it’s never too late to turn around. Think about it I was afraid, scared, in fear the whole time, why didn’t I just stop, and pray, and ask God to calm my fears, or let me know what I should do? I mean really my heart was racing, my anxiety was overwhelming, and I was in panic. God wouldn’t have wanted that for me, but I never asked. If I had started that day out in prayer I know it would have looked and ended up a whole lot different. Fear can be a good thing, when what you fear is God. But if your life is driven by fear you probably need to get off, get on your knees and start with prayer. God loves us too much, and tells, even compels us, to trust, and never fear. “Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent” (Revelation 3:19, ESV). Okay so repent, take your fear, worries and anxieties to God, and leave them there, He is big enough to handle it. Then don’t get on that ride again!

  2. I enjoy reading my bible daily and I’m happy more people may be beginning to read their bible starting with the 40 day journey with Jesus . This morning’s reading ( NIV version ) leaves out some important parts of the prayer Jesus taught his disciples to say ( Luke 11 : 2-4) . I hope people will take the time to research the full prayer Jesus gave His disciples .
    Blessings, Ken

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