Psalm 103:2

Is everyone talking about forgetfulness, or is it just people of my era? One of the greatest fears in the western world today seems to be that of falling prey to Alzheimer’s. It can hit people in their forties, but most commonly is a disease of the elderly. What is it that we most fear? Is it a loss of identity or the loss of reasoning ability?

Memory is what makes one rich….remembering friends, special occasions, significant accomplishments, the fulfillment of hopes and dreams. Memories are triggered by any or all of the 5 senses. We do not want to lose this precious dimension that actually defines the meaning and purpose of our lives.

However, there is a memory that often haunts us, of things deliberately forgotten. Every human being has a God-consciousness. Some work very hard to deny it, and the harder they fight the more pitiable it is to see the reality against which they engage. God exists! The Holy Spirit will not let us forget God. Scripture tells us He is evident everywhere, even in nature (Romans 1:20).

We read in the Bible of life experiences that coloured many lives by making people conscious of God. These were often repeated so that generations would not forget that God cared about His people. This same God cares about you and me today. Yet, unfortunately there are those who suffer the folly of intentional forgetfulness. They have access to the promises of God. “Forgetting” God is tantamount to rejecting God. There are many references to this topic in both Testaments. Isaiah describes the energy required to “forget” God who is the rock, the fortress of His people. The nations rage and roar before they flee away (Isaiah 17).

On the positive side the Psalmist reflects on all of God’s benefits. “Praise the Lord O my soul and forget not all His benefits!” (Psalm 103:2). He lists some of them. God forgives, heals, redeems, crowns, and satisfies our mouths with good things! He made known His ways. God is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love. He does not treat us the way our sins deserve. Would we really want to forget any of these?

My aunt suffered from Alzheimer’s, yet in the midst of her confusion and paranoia the mention of God relaxed her and brought her peace. Whether she had “forgotten” Him due to changes in her brain, the wonder of God is that He had not forgotten her.

Jesus reminded us that His Father is a God of detail – that He remembers the flowers of the field and the sparrows He created. How wonderful it is to read Jesus’ own words, reminding us of our value in the eyes of One who never forgets:

“Are you not worth more than many sparrows?” (Luke 12:7).


Have you deliberately forgotten God or even wished He would forget you, in moments of temptation? Playing with our memories is not an option when we consider living lives that are pleasing to our heavenly Father. Remember, God’s love is eternal! But because He is just, God will punish our unconfessed sins, since they display an attitude of unrepentance. Let’s remember the Divine promise: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

by Marilyn Daniels (


Forgiven Much

Photo by Luis Quintero on

Luke 7:36-50

Have you been forgiven much? What is the measuring stick for our sins as children of God? Is it a list of do’s and don’ts? Are we guided by our feelings, whether something is right or wrong? How does God’s Word describe “sin”? Chuck Swindoll gives us some clues.

“Any and all sin is enough to separate us from God and invoke His wrath—even eating fruit (Genesis 3:6)! All sin is equal in the sense that all sin breaks God’s law and falls short of His perfect standards. The Bible portrays sin as straying from God’s paths, opposing Him, and rebelling against Him. Whether it’s the sin of stealing a small item, telling a lie, or murder, all sin transgresses the law of God. So yes, in that sense all sin is the same in God’s eyes.”

When God calls us to do something and we do not do it, is that sin? In order to appreciate God’s forgiving spirit we need to understand what offends Him. He saves us to be useful, to further His Kingdom here on earth. In our reading today Luke signifies the importance of glorifying God through our actions. A woman worshiped Jesus. Is that enough?

Reading on, we find that Jesus declares this woman’s sins are forgiven (:48). Is there anything more important in this life than to know our sins are forgiven? The reality is we keep on sinning, in small ways or in big. We all yield to temptation from time to time so are blessed to know that “He [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). There is one condition. “If”….If and when we recognize our thoughts, our words, or our behaviour have offended God, we must confess our sins. Then and then only will God forgive us and cleanses us.

How did the woman in our scripture reading demonstrate a repentant attitude? Tears and kisses? I believe it was the way she bowed at Jesus’ feet. In an act of subservience, she acknowledged His supremacy. She didn’t care what people thought, or what they said about her. In fact, to this day she remains nameless. Only her actions testify to her faith. Jesus knows our hearts, just as He knew hers. “Your faith has saved you” (:50). WOW! He knew what this wordless demonstration of love meant.

Apparently my love is conditioned by my awareness of my own personal sin, according to this woman’s example. Jesus leaves us with a thought for further consideration: “He/she who has been forgiven little, loves little” (:47). For those of us who have known the exquisite joy of being forgiven, our gratitude is never-ending. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!!! Listen to the Psalmist: “It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn Your decrees. The law from Your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold” (Psalm 119:71).


God knows all about us. Are your sins and mine many or few? This woman was apparently a great sinner. Listen to Jesus publicly declaring: “Her many sins have been forgiven”. Whether you and I have been great sinners according to the standards of this world, nothing is too great for God to forgive (Psalm 86:5). How often are we Christ-like towards others who still struggle with temptation? (Ephesians 4:32) How kind are we to ourselves when we need to confess we blew it once again? God’s Holy Word is full of encouragement! He opens the door for us to express our great love to Him, by declaring us to be forgiven much!

by Marilyn Daniels (


In Remembrance

Photo by Eric Smart on

Luke 22:15-20

November is a time set aside to remember the horror of two world wars, and of course veterans from other wars are also celebrated. So many young lives were lost in a slaughter made necessary in defence of values and ideals considered to be worthy personal sacrifice.

Another battle might be remembered as we look at the evils of warfare. Only one life was lost, but it has impacted the world for more than 2,000 years! Jesus died for the sins of the whole world so that every tribe and nation will have an opportunity to know God in a personal way. Why is that important?

Another question for today is: “What makes life worth living?” What is it that gives meaning and purpose to the routines which day after day may become mundane, boring and even perhaps meaningless? As we remember what men and women in bygone eras have fought for, do we hold anything so very dear that we would be willing to die for it?

Imagine the value of every person, each of us created in the image of God. Giving us the capability to make choices was a risky business, but God wanted us to freely love Him in response to His great love for each individual. He loved us so much that He was willing to provide the only solution to the wrong choices which led mankind into sin. Sin, of course, separates us from our Holy Heavenly Father.

As we take time to remember WW1 and 2, perhaps we might remember the battle with evil which plagues humans since the fall of Adam. Let us remember, as Christ Himself taught His disciples long ago to remember that awful moment when, bearing the burden of our sin, He was separated from the Father while enduring the agony of the cross. Alone!

However, that was not the end. Good prevailed over evil! The wonderful victory of Jesus’ resurrection authorizes our greatest hope – that we one day will rise to spend eternity with our Saviour and Lord, in His kingdom. Let us cling to this precious remembrance.


What lessons have we learned from history? What might we be willing to die for? Is there something that lights our passion? What memories bring you and me the greatest thrill? What is our heart’s greatest treasure? What do Jesus’ words “Do this in remembrance of Me” bring to mind?

by Marilyn Daniels. (

Devotional · Uncategorized

Height of Hypocrisy

crop woman with sheet face mask
Photo by Anna Shvets on

Luke 18:9-14

How often have you and I thanked God for our blessings? It’s a critical part of worship isn’t it? First we adore God for His character – all that He is in infinitude, eternality, omniscience and might. That’s a mouthful isn’t it? In other words when we praise God we remember He is so superior to anyone we know, unfathomable really in His wisdom, power and love!

Then we thank God for how He works among the people He has created, sustaining us by His powerful word (Hebrews 1:3). In many countries temporal blessings are so abundant that folks begin to think these are their right. Recently I’ve heard people saying no one can take away their rights. Have they forgotten those around our globe who don’t enjoy the same unalienable rights?

Why then have rights to life and liberty been denied so many people? It’s heart-breaking to see babies and little children who will never enjoy the practical sustenance we believe all children need. Doesn’t God care? Yes, He does. He has given us so much that if we shared a portion of it regularly with others, this world would be a different place. How sacrificially might we love others? When we say we love God how does that play out on the horizontal level, here on earth?

Jesus often talked in parables. One such story might relate to us today. A Pharisee stood up to pray in the temple. Notice his posture. Notice his attitude. “Thank God I am not like other men”! What was his perspective on other people? It was very negative. He would have made a great reporter in the twenty-first century. Look at our society – on the streets of our cities there are robbers, drunks, prostitutes, murderers, drug addicts, adulterers and those who cheat on their taxes. There are even crooks in government! (Luke 18:11). Surely I’m not like them!

He continued: “Look God at how good I have been, tithing and fasting regularly – twice a week!” Now to me that statement smacks of pride. Paul reminds people of faith that the universe was made by God (Hebrews 11:1). God asked Job where he was when He laid the foundation of the earth? (Job 38:4-7). Let’s keep our perspectives about God and man in balance. What impact can my fasting and tithing or any other good works have on the God who created all things? It’s like an ant bragging to me about building its anthill.

Just to keep us focused, Jesus contrasts the Pharisee’s prayer with the prayer of a tax collector – a man the Pharisee has just mocked. This man didn’t even raise his eyes to heaven, but “beat upon his breast and said ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner’ “ (Luke 18:13).

Which man do you think was justified before God? Looking at our world today, it’s shocking to see Christians caught up in what once might have been called a “worldly” perspective. I was told once by a professing believer, that God only wanted the best for me and therefore my old, ramshackle car was an affront to Him. I almost bought it!! However, I knew that God had provided me with a vehicle that got me where I needed to go, freeing me to share with others some of the wealth of this world that still remained in my pocket. This was my comfort in the face of ridicule.

One more lesson might be learned from this parable. Had the Pharisee forgotten that to judge others is a sin in the eyes of God? Along with his insatiable pride, he was as much a sinner as those he criticized. God could judge his heart, even if his life looked good on the outside. We who know God the Father intimately have the unalienable right and privilege to spread His love to those who have lost heart and hope. Just as God lifts us up when we are weary, so we must lift up others with words and deeds of encouragement. May God forgive us if we don’t!


Do I feel accountable to God for all that He has blessed me with?

Which man’s life does mine resemble?

How do others see me, and is it the same as the way God sees me?

Who might you view as society’s outcasts? Would you be willing to come along side them in love?

Devotional · Uncategorized

Appointed by God

man touching book
Photo by Luis Quintero on

Luke 10:1-20

According to Luke’s records, there were many who wanted to follow Jesus, but that on their own terms. We read of 3 such people in Luke Chapter 9:57-62. Peter, on the other hand, voiced the commitment of the twelve disciples Jesus had hand-picked. “We have left everything to follow You” (Luke 18:28).

Apparently there were more than those 12 who actually followed Jesus. After rebuking those who wanted to follow Him when it was convenient, Jesus appointed many more to assist Him in His ministry. They were to go head of Him to prepare various Israeli towns for His coming. He commissioned them to heal the sick and to preach about the Kingdom of God (10:9).

Imagine the extent of this ministry …..72 people were appointed to go in pairs. They might expect everything they needed to be provided – food and accommodation (:7). They were to receive whatever food was set before them. Culturally this was important, since the Jews had very strict food laws. Much later this was confirmed in Peter’s life when he had a vision revealing to him that whatever God calls clean to eat, if quite acceptable (Acts 10:9-16).

Who were these people appointed by God? What was their mandate for ministry? They were to preach the truth about Jesus Christ and His kingdom. Peter identified those who know Jesus as a Royal priesthood. (1 Peter 2:9) In Old Testament terms the priesthood was very exclusive. Not so with followers of Jesus. One might expect the 12 Apostles with whose names we are very familiar, to be singled out for this responsibility, but no – this group was nameless.

Does that matter? Yes! The message was all about Jesus, not about men. So it is today. When we witness to others about faith in Jesus, it is to bring glory to God alone. We are just instruments in His hands; the outcome is up to God. We will be accountable to God for obedience to Jesus’ command to make disciples, but that follows conversion. Before conversion takes place our only responsibility is to point the way to Jesus and to let the Holy Spirit do the rest. If we have been appointed we must be true to our calling as representatives of God. If we are rejected by folks, it is really God they are rejecting (:16).

The 72 returned with joy! They had never had such an experience! Even the demons had responded to their message because they were authorized by Jesus to take control (:18)


When I was learning to witness as a Christian I thought that we were to win others to Christ. Lost on my young mind was the reality of the power that resides in His name! I assumed a responsibility that became too heavy; it was a burden God did not intend me to bear. Jesus said “My yoke is easy and My burden is light” ( Matthew 11:30).

Now I can share my faith free from that burden, and instead approach folks with joy!

Are you weighed down with a responsibility that is not yours?

Can you let God be God, and you His instrument?

If you have been appointed by God do you believe He will equip you for the task?

by Marilyn Daniels.