Dale Cresap's blog

Daily Journaling Devotionals

Heavenly Gems in Daily Bites: CWG Ministries Life-Engaging Blogs

Dale Cresap is a Certified CWG Facilitator posting daily devotional blogs of two-way journaling. (What is two-way journaling?) Enjoy and be encouraged!

daily word - recycle?

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Are you eager to throw things away, or do you put some creative thought into ways in which they may be used for other purposes before you discard them? Humans generate a lot of garbage, but in the natural world there is no such thing. Do you see any spiritual parallel for this situation? Have you ever seen me use things that you would throw away? Joseph told his brothers that what they meant for evil God meant for good. And in my case the stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone. Nothing is wasted in nature or in the Kingdom of God. What are you eager to discard that I have a purpose for?

daily word - brother?

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I told the story of the Good Samaritan in response to the question, ‘who is my neighbor’. Have you ever gone to a church where all the members refer to one another as brother or sister, as a title? This is a routine practice in some churches, but those who attend them tend to reserve this practice for each other, and do not extend it to other churches, let alone beyond that. Would you agree that the question of ‘who is my brother’ raises the ‘who is my neighbor’ question to the next level? The lesson of the Good Samaritan story is that everyone is your neighbor, even those you would otherwise reject. You have my permission to treat everyone you meet as your brother, whether you call them that or not.  

daily word - neutral?

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You know that your car will not move while it is in neutral. What about you? You do not normally think of people as being in gear or not, but you bring your own past to the present moment with all the experiences you have had to date. These can be a hindrance if  they have given you preconceptions and narrow biased perspectives. If everything you encounter falls into neat categories previously assigned you should be suspicious of the way you view the world. If you can release these things you are in a better position to see things as they really are and learn and grow from them. You need to be in neutral if you want to move forward.

daily word - Kites

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Have you ever flown a kite? Most people have as children, and know that two things are required. Wind is necessary; you can’t fly a kite on a calm day. But wind alone is not enough. A kite will not soar aloft without tension in the kite string. Otherwise the kite just blows along the ground. Do you see a parallel to your spiritual life? The wind is like the Spirit, which blows where it will, and you do not control it. The Spirit is the force that allows you to soar aloft, but for this to work you also need to be tethered to the reality of the world you live in. Do not think that you can succeed with one without the other. You need both.

daily word - mass produced?

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Are you aware that most of the things you buy and use are mass-produced? There are great economic advantages to this, making workers more productive and raising the standard of living for those who live in such an economy. How does this relate to your life of faith? If you see people being saved in large crusades, believing the same basic doctrines, and joining large churches, this can give the impression that faith can be mass-produced like consumer goods. Yet faith is not in the realm of commerce, and its essence is relational, which does not lend itself to mass-production. I am here for you on a one-to-one basis.

daily word - wineskins

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I told a story about wineskins indicating that changes were coming in the structure of worship. My own followers didn’t get it, let alone the religious establishment of my time. Martin Luther initiated a reformation of the church in his generation and again the religious establishment did not think it was necessary. Is it time for another reformation? Would you expect it to originate from within the church? Do you belong to the religious establishment in your generation? Then if the time had come for another reformation would you be aware of it? The principle of wineskins was not a one-time event.

internal forgiveness?

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Have you received rude or hostile behavior from other people? Who hasn’t? How do you respond? The temptation and default response is to respond in kind. If you can refrain from doing this externally, how well do you control the same response internally? Have you ever harbored bitterness and resentment without saying anything, or played through self-justifying dialogues or speeches in your mind on a repeating loop? You have no control over the way others treat you but your responses are your own. You can agree with this premise and find it is easier said than done. Forgiveness and love of your enemies are as much for your sake as theirs. With me this is possible.

daily word - one size?

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Have you ever bought clothing labeled ‘one size fits all’? How well did that work for you? People come in a wide variety of sizes, and vary in other ways too. Do you see the Christian faith as ‘one size fits all’? It is true that there is one savior, and one name given by which you may be saved, one way to the Father. But it is also true that you cannot judge another man’s servant, for only his own master can do that. You will meet people at different stages of progress, and on different pathways that still lead to the same destination. Let your light so shine before them that they may see your good works and glorify me, and refrain from judging them for being where they are.   [I'm leaving town for 10 days]

daily word - who provides?

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Who puts food on your table? If you earn money to buy groceries then you can claim that you do. From another perspective you could say that I do. From yet another perspective you could say that farmers, field hands, truck drivers, produce workers and clerks do. These are all valid perspectives. Do you appreciate all of them, or do you only think of the first one? If so, it is easy to think that you are more self-sufficient than you really are. You may never meet the people involved in the process, but you are dependent on them. You may not send them thank-you notes, but you should have a profound sense of gratitude that they are on the job. I want you to appreciate all of these perspectives.

daily word - wonderfully made

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Do you see yourself as living in a world of wonder and enchantment? Do you see science as the enemy of this view, trying to explain away the wonder and beauty of creation? It doesn’t have to be this way. The proper task of science is to understand the underlying mechanisms of the heavens and the earth. This task is not in fundamental conflict with an appreciation of and gratitude for its presence and beauty. In fact, the more you know about how it works the better position you are in to be amazed by it and grateful for it. No matter how much science can explain it can’t create a world that is, like you, fearfully and wonderfully made. Only I can do that.

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