5 minute Father’s Day devotional

Father’s day is just around the corner and I know you want to make it special. One of the best things you can do to encourage your spouse is to share a quick 5 minute father’s day devotional. 

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5 minute Father’s Day devotional

To make this really easy to follow, I’ve broken the devotional down into 3 steps. 

1. Read the scripture: 

Deuteronomy 6:6-9 ESV And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

2. Read these thoughts 

My husband and I have very different upbringings. I grew up in a Christian home with parents who loved the Lord and served him in every aspect of their lives.

My husband didn’t grow up in a Christian home. He was saved through a Christian ministry that ran out of his school. So, he learned about God and Christianity from this organization. 

When we got married and started having kids, I worried we weren’t doing enough to teach our children about God. 

In my home growing up, we would go to church 2-3 times a week and had daily family devotions. So compared to that, I felt like we were not “doing enough”. 

My husband understood my concern and gave me incredible insight. He told me it wasn’t normal practice to read the Bible or pray in the home. Just doing those small things makes a huge impact on children’s lives.

Since that conversation, I have learned that teaching our kids about God doesn’t always happen in the same way. The Bible encourages us to teach our children about God in everything we do.  

For me, this means taking every opportunity to talk to kids about my faith, and my testimony. We read the bible and pray together every night. We tell them about times The Lord has provided for us, or lead us. But we also try to answer questions they have about church and faith. 

For example: One Sunday we were having communion and one kid asked about the bread and the wine, another time they asked about the cross on the church wall – Because we are at church, it was tempting to shush them and tell them you can talk about it later, but… instead I take these opportunities and tell them about these symbols and what they mean.  

Take the opportunity to teach your kids about God- what he has done, what things mean, and how things work.

May The Lord encourage and guide you as you raise your kids.

 

3. Pray for the father of your kids 

Dear Lord, thank you for (husband’s name). He is such an amazing dad. I’m so thankful you brought him into our life and the partner he is on this parenting journey. Continue to give him wisdom as he leads our family. Encourage him as he lives his life for you, and give him the wisdom to make decisions that will lead our children to you. 

In the comments below, share the ways you teach your kids about God in the simple everyday moments.

Dig Deeper

The Bible is really practical. There are so many things we can learn through reading it. 

Get encouragement and training to grow in your walk with God Today!

Grow in your faith today through biblical teaching and training all on your own terms. Join The Christian Growth Hub! An online membership for Christian women who want to stay focused on Christ, save time in their bible study and grow in their faith without feeling overwhelmed. Click here to learn more.

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What does the Bible say about fathers?

My husband and I have been married for 15 years and one thing that made me fall in love with him was his love for kids. On Sundays at church, I could always find him holding a baby and volunteering in the nursery. Even though he loved kids, he didn’t have the greatest father figure growing up, so he watched godly men parent. Another way to learn how to be a godly father is to ask: What does the Bible say about fathers?

The Bible has so much wisdom to share about life and fatherhood. Continue to read and discover what The Bible says about fathers.

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What does the Bible say about fathers?

Fathers should discipline their children

As parents, it is our job to discipline our children. But we have warped the meaning of discipline. In the ancient Hebrew of Proverbs, discipline means to instruct, correct, chastise, or rebuke. It does not mean punish or beat.

We see many verses that encourage parents to discipline their children, comparing how God treats us to how we should treat our children.

Proverbs 3:11-12 ESV My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights

This verse clarifies that any discipline given should be done out of love for the child. The father delights in the child and loves him, so he wants to correct him and show him a better way.

Proverbs 19:18 ESV Discipline your son, for there is hope; do not set your heart on putting him to death.

The Bible makes it clear that discipline is important. If we don’t teach our children and come alongside them, they may make choices that lead them to death. By showing our children how to follow The Lord, they see an example of what it means to follow God.

Proverbs 1:1-4, 8-10 These are the proverbs of Solomon, David’s son, king of Israel. Their purpose is to teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise. Their purpose is to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair. These proverbs will give insight to the simple, knowledge and discernment to the young. 8 My child, listen when your father corrects you. Don’t neglect your mother’s instruction. What you learn from them will crown you with grace and be a chain of honor around your neck. 10 My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them!

Proverbs 1:1-4, 8-10

Hebrews 12:11 ESV For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

Hebrews 12:7 ESV It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?

No one likes to be corrected, but it’s necessary.

Matthew 7:9-11 ESV Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!

Children are a blessing

Psalm 127:3-5 Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

Psalm 127:3-5 esv

We have 3 kids, 12, 9, and 6. Each of them is a blessing, and we are so thankful to have them in our lives.

Day-to-day parenting can be hard, and it’s easy to take our eyes off the big picture of what we are doing in the home. Our goal is to train our children, so they decide to believe in Jesus and decide to follow God on their own once they leave the house.

4 Things Fathers can do to lead their child to God

1. Don’t provoke your children to anger

Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

As a parent, it’s easy to make our children upset. Our oldest daughter is 12 and wants more freedom and fewer boundaries. When we set boundaries, she gets angry and frustrated. This is not the type of anger this verse is talking about.

Do not provoke can also mean not to irritate, exasperate, excite, or stir up your children. There are many ways parents can provoke their children, but I want to focus on one that I see in our house regularly.

I love my kids, but sometimes they get on my nerves. I ask them to settle down 1 or 2 times, but then my irritation increases and I snap at my kids. I raise my voice, or speak with more frustration. My increased emotion usually scares my kids, hurt their feelings and stirs them to anger. There was no reason for me to be angry. It’s my job to communicate properly with my kids. I need to be better at calming myself down and bring the emotions down, not up.

2. Love your wives

Ephesians 5:25-33 ESV Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, …

Kids learn how to navigate the world through the examples they see in their day to day. If kids see dad treat mom badly, then they learn it’s ok to treat someone like that as well. So raising children that treat others well, then it’s important to live out our faith through the things we do, and the way we treat people.

3. Teach your children about The Lord

Deuteronomy 6:6-9 ESV And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

As parents, we have so many things on our plate and “things we need to do”. It’s easy to take our kids to church and let the church teach our children about who God is.

But that’s not what The Bible encourages us to do. Scripture tells us we should teach our kids diligently about The Lord. We need to share our faith and the things God has done for our lives.

It’s not always easy to take the time to teach our kids about God, but it’s as simple as reading the Bible and praying with them just once a day. In our house, we have a short devotion time after dinner.

4. Walk in a way worthy of God

1 Thessalonians 2:11-12 ESV For you know how, like a father with his children, we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.

Think about the people that frustrate you the most. For me, that are people who say one thing and then do something else. This leads me to lose trust in them and I stop listing to what they have to say.

The same thing can happen with our kids. If we tell them to do something and we don’t do it, they might stop listing to us.

As humans, we all have moments of hypocrisy. Don’t let those moments discourage you. Admit your faults, ask your kids for forgiveness, and give your children the same chance to ask for forgiveness and try again.

A Father’s Intension

As parents, it’s important that we are intentional about what we say to our kids, what we do with them, and the way we live our lives. Everything we do, our kids see and store it in their memory.

The bible encourages us to be intentional, attentive and loving. These are not always easy to do, but something we can all do better at.

Proverbs 4:1-4 ESV Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction, and be attentive, that you may gain insight, for I give you good precepts; do not forsake my teaching. When I was a son with my father, tender, the only one in the sight of my mother, he taught me and said to me, “Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live.

1 Corinthians 13:1-13 ESV If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; …

Dig Deeper

The Bible is really practical. There are so many things we can learn through reading it.

Get encouragement and training to grow in your walk with God Today!

Start growing in your faith today through biblical teaching and training all on your own terms. Join The Christian Growth Hub! A growing online membership for christian women who want to grow in their faith without feeling overwhelmed. Click here to learn more.

Jesus is King of Kings

I look through the history books and see failed leadership repeatedly. Thankfully, as Christians, we have a King who is perfect and will one day reign forever. Jesus is the King of Kings and we can let our hope rest in Him.

Over the past several weeks, I have been sharing blog posts about the names of God.

This week is no different. I am so thrilled to have Amber as a guest blogger.

Amber is the wife to Lance and homeschool momma of their two sweet little boys. She has been blogging on and off since 2006 and has a passion to see women live into abundance through finding their worth and identity in Christ alone. You can find Amber’s blog www.cultivatingjewels.com

Jesus is King of Kings

When Jesus came as a baby, it took the world by surprise. Jews of the time were expecting Jesus to come as an established King, not as an infant and especially not as an infant born in a manger of all places. 

God has always been King and rightfully so. He is King of Heaven and all He has created on Earth. 

He has dominion over all things. Within the Bible, there are three verses that relate the name ‘King of Kings’ to the Father or to the Son. 

Two of these speak of Jesus while the third refers to God.

Each of the three times the term ‘King of Kings’ is used in reference to God or Jesus, it is paired with the term Lord of Lords. 

Revelations 19:16 is probably the most well-known verse using these terms. We find a similar verse in Revelation 17:14. 

  • Revelations 19:16 (ESV) On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.
  • Revelations 17:14 (ESV) They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.

Jesus As King

Great Nations do not exist apart from strong leadership. 

Looking back through history it is fairly easy to trace what countries succeeded and which succumbed because of the strength (or weakness) of their leader. 

Throughout the Old Testament, Kings are listed and categorized as good, or bad. The bible also tells us whether the King led the people to do God’s will or followed the way of the wicked. 

From an earthly standard, kings are often known for the outcome of battles – whether they won or lost. 

We know that Jesus has already won the battle from reading verses such as 

  • John 16:33 (ESV) I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.
  • Colossians 2:15 (ESV) He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.

Jesus is worthy of being called King because He won the battle and is sitting at the right hand of God. 

  • Luke 22:69 (ESV) But from now on the Son of Man shall be seated at the right hand of the power of God. 

He is sitting on the Throne in Heaven.

The story of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, is that of God creating the world, sin entering the world, Jesus coming to save the world, and Jesus overcoming the forces of evil. In every way, He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. 

God as King

The third verse which uses the name King of Kings is in reference to God the Father. 

  • 1 Timothy 6:15 (ESV) which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords


To understand this verse better, let’s also look at a section of Scripture found in 1st Corinthians chapter 15. 

Paul is discussing the resurrection of Jesus and also of our resurrection as believers. He explains that if we belong to Christ our resurrection is sure.

But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.

1 Corinthians 15:23-28

In the above verses, we see the order God has ordained for the day of resurrection. 

Jesus will first destroy every rule, authority, and power including death. Then, all things, including Jesus, will be subjected to God the Father. 

Looking back at the verse in 1 Timothy, we can relate the order of God’s Kingdom, to the fact that in the end, God is the ruler (king) over all.

King Defined

When looking to understand terms better, it is important to start with their definition.

Noah Webster defines the word ‘king’ as The chief or sovereign of a nation; a man invested with supreme authority over a nation, tribe or country. A sovereign; a prince; a ruler. Christ is called the king of his church. 

Using this definition, using the name King for God shows God is the leader of a nation and has supreme power over that nation.

 We know from reading The Word that we, His children, are His nation. 

God has complete authority over His children, and everything else He has created.  

He is the King of all Kings, Lord of all Lords. 

As we read our Bibles, it is very important to know the names of God and the meaning behind them. 

The Bible comes to be much more alive and active when we take the time to study the Scriptures to understand and get to know God on a more personal basis. 

3 ways Jesus as King of Kings affects our lives

Now that we have looked into the meaning behind the name ‘King of Kings’, let’s turn our focus to what this means in our own personal lives. 

Another terrific way of having the Word come alive for us is when we can take what it says and apply it personally.

1. To have No Other Gods

When studying the Bible it is important to pay attention to the parallels between the Old and New Testaments. 

In Deuteronomy 5 God gave the Israelites the 10 commandments. He clearly instructs them to have no other Gods. For the Israelites, worshipping other Gods meant they were not to bow down to any idols. 

In today’s world, we don’t worship physical idols, but we do sometimes worship other things. Idols in our lives may be money, fame, work, church attendance, coffee, and so on.

An idol is anything we put before God in our lives. Jesus desires to be the King of Kings in our lives. That means putting God in front of everything else in our lives. 

God wants to sit on the throne of our hearts and reign. There should be no competition for Him if we are truly living as His children. 

2. No Rivals  

While sayings such as “all I need is coffee and a whole lot of Jesus” are trendy, I would propose that in all actuality they are lies from the enemy to distract us from the fact that God alone is enough.

God alone is able. We do not have to rely on coffee (or anything else) to provide for us what only Jesus can. 

This doesn’t mean we need to vilify everything else. However, we must give glory where glory is due, and that is of course Jesus Christ alone. He has no rivals.

3. Rest In Jesus

As believers, we can rest in Jesus’ victory over Satan. 

While the enemy will do everything he can to attack us, we do not have to fear him. 

Christians can rest because Jesus has won the last battle. If we have asked God into our hearts, we know where our future will be spent – with the One and Only King of Kings.

It is my prayer that this writing has allowed you to better understand the name “King of Kings” when it is used in relation to God the Father and Christ the Son.  

In the comments, let me know what areas of your life you have surrendered to Jesus- Kings of Kings.  

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11 perfect father’s day verses for cards

My father’s birthday falls right around Father’s day. Some years, they are on the day same. Ever since we were young, he always insisted on getting separate gifts and separate cards. Since I love my dad, I was more than happy to oblige. But, if you are anything like me, you like to add bible verses for cards but always come up blank. So, to help you out, I want to share with you 11 perfect Father’s day verses for cards.

a picture of a father sitting down. In his lap is one daughter with a picture and behind him is another daughter with hands over his eyes. Next to the picture are the words 11 perfect father's day verses for cards.

11 Father’s Day Verses for Cards

1. Joshua 1:9‍

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9

This is my favourite Father’s day verse for cards. It’s an encouragement to all parents to stand firm.

Being a mom is one of the hardest jobs I have ever had. There have been so many times I have felt scared and unsure. During those times, I have remembered that God is always with me. That truth brings me so much comfort. I know my husband feels the same.

2. Joshua 24:15

“But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

Joshua 24:15

The Bible tells us that men are the spiritual leaders of the home. One of the best moves a man can make is to choose to follow The Lord. This is a daily choice he makes to follow God and lead His family to worship and honor The Lord.

3. Proverbs 14:26‍

“Whoever fears the Lord has a secure fortress, and for their children it will be a refuge

Proverbs 14:26

One of my favorite verses is Psalm 46:1 which tells us God is our refuge and strength. This verse tells us that those who fear God have that refuge. Not only that, but a parent’s fear of God will also be a refuge for their children.

As Christian parents, we make different choices for our children than other parents may make. In our family, it means saying no to certain movies, TV shows, and access to social media. They are some of the only kids in their school that don’t have their own tech devices. Our kids don’t love it, but they know we set those rules because we love them and we are protecting them from an ugly online world.

By having those boundaries in our home, we offer them a safe place to land after a long school day. They escape all the school stuff and get rest, love, and feel renewed for the next day.

***These boundaries work for us and we don’t judge other parents who make different choices. We make that clear to our kids. Not all families work the same and we encourage each family to make decisions that work for them in the season they are in. ***

4. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14‍

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. 14 Let all that you do be done with love.

1 Corinthians 16:13-14‍ NKJV

The context of this verse is encouraging Christians to stand strong in their faith. As parents, this verse can also encourage us because it’s our job to watch out for evil things and protect our children from them. It’s our job to stand fast in our faith so we can be an example of Christian living and what that looks like on a day-to-day basis (even when life is hard). It’s also our job to parent with love so that our children don’t see rules and regulations but relationships and worship.

Related Blog Posts

5. Psalm 127:3-5‍

“Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court.”

Psalm 127:3-5

My mothering journey started out extremely hard. I haven’t always loved it and when I would read this verse, I would get upset. I didn’t understand how children could be a reward. Rewards are supposed to be good, and I felt everything but that.

It took me years to understand how children could be a blessing.

Through many hard circumstances, I understand that, for me, the blessing comes from what I have learned about God.

Becoming a parent has opened my eyes to who God is as our Father. There have been so many spiritual lessons I’ve learned as a parent that I never truly understood before.

The journey hasn’t always been easy, but I would never trade it for the world, because not only have I gotten to know God more, I now love my role as a mother and am so glad God carried me through to where I am now.

6. Psalm 128:3-4‍

“Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table. Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord.”

Psalm 128:3-4

These father’s day verses for cards are ones that took me a while to understand.

When most people read these verses, they think that the fruit the wife has is many children. That makes sense, but I don’t read it that way. When I read it, I think the fruit the woman produces is spiritual fruit.

There is this saying that if you ask God for patience, He won’t give you patience, He’ll give you an opportunity to practice patience.

Being a mother or father is a series of opportunities to practice patience, love, kindness, self-control, and all the other spiritual fruit.

7. Proverbs 23:24  

“The father of a righteous child has great joy; a man who fathers a wise son rejoices in him.”

Proverbs 23:24

There is no better feeling than when you watch your children make good decisions.

My youngest child is 6, and he is very busy trying to figure out the world around him. Unlike my 2 older girls, he is happy to share with me his thought process and why he did or didn’t do something. It’s an insight into his mind and it always brings a smile to my face.

For example. Today, I went to the grocery store, and I asked him if he wanted to come. He was more than happy to say yes and was a good helper the whole trip. On the walk back to the car from the store, he said: You didn’t say thank you for coming. Usually, you thank me for coming. I said yes because I didn’t want you to go alone.

It’s such a simple thing, but I took joy in it today. He loves me so much that he doesn’t want me to be lonely and thinks I should always have help.

There are so many of these tiny moments in parenting. It’s easy to miss them and not realize how they can bring joy. But for me, these are the moments I hang on to because I know there will be hard moments to come. These joyful moments will help me through and remind me why I love being a mom.

8. 3 John 1:4

“It is the greatest joy of my life to hear that my children are consistently living their lives in the ways of truth.”

3 John 1:4

If I could wish one thing, it would be that all 3 of my kids would ask Jesus for the forgiveness of their sins and live lives that would honor Him.

It is my deepest desire.

My oldest daughter is 12 and sometimes, at church, all I can do is rejoice when I watch her sing and worship God. It gives me so much joy to see her choose to worship God and do it with all her heart. When I see that, my prayer is always the same: that she would continue to worship God all the days of her life.

The best thing we can do for our children is to pray for their salvation and bring them to The Lord daily.

9. Psalm 103:13

As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him.

Psalm 103:13

God is so big and sometimes hard to understand. But, I see the love and compassion my husband has for our children and I marvel God feels that way about us.

I know how much we love our children and am reminded that God’s love for them is greater than that. It’s immeasurable. There really is no comparison, but our love for our children is the closest example we have. Because there is nothing I wouldn’t do for our children and God has given us everything- even the death of His son. Every time I think about that, it blows me away.

10. Proverbs 20:7

The righteous who walks in his integrity— blessed are his children after him!

Provers 20:7

Kids are little parrots. They will copy and mimic those around them. If we want our children to follow The Lord, then we need to be living our lives in a way that shows that to them. When a father walks with integrity, his children will follow.

This is not a promise, because I know it doesn’t always happen, but it’s an encouragement. It’s a reminder of the important job we hold as mothers and fathers.

Our children will follow us- so where are we taking them?

11. Philippians 4:6

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Philippians 4:6 ESV

The last father’s day verses for cards I want to share with you is Philippians 4:6.

Before having kids, I would not call myself an anxious person. But, as soon as I was pregnant for the first time, the worries came as well.

There are so many times in our children’s lives when we will feel anxious. This verse isn’t telling us to stop being anxious. It’s telling us what to do when we do feel anxious— bring it all to The Lord.

When we go to The Lord, it’s a shoulder to cry on, feet to lay our burdens down, comfort and safety when we need it most.

It’s not a promise that the anxiety will go away, or that the situation will go away- it’s a promise that God is with us and wants us to come to Him with ALL OF IT.

I am so thankful for my father, and my husband. Both are men who love The Lord and have lived these verses. In the comments below, share your favourite father’s day verses for cards.

Jesus is The Good Shepherd

The only pet I have ever trained has been our dog Rolo. After 2 years of being in our home, he knows our voice and comes when we call Him. I have slowly come to understand the bond between an animal and its owner. The bible tells us that Jesus is the Good Shepherd. The good shepherd has sheep that follow Him.

This week, I am so happy to share a post written by Marilyn. She writes about Jesus being the Good Shepherd.

Marilyn Nutter is from Greer, South Carolina, and is the author of three devotional books and contributor to online sites, print, and compilations. To learn more about her, follow her on her Blog or read her bio at the end of this post.

A picture of a shepherd moving his sheep along. Next to the picture are the words The good shephers. Powerful names of God blog series

Jesus is the Good Shepherd

How do you introduce yourself?  I was known as “Mrs. Nutter” to my students. To my children’s friends, I was “Kate’s mom.” When meeting new friends at church or in the community, I’m simply “Marilyn,” and at conferences, my name might be followed by “contributing writer to publications.” Each introduction is unique and related to who I met.

Jesus introduces Himself

Reading through the New Testament, Jesus introduces Himself with seven “I am” statements. Each unique name has a life-giving name for believers.

These names reflect His character and offer assurances of His provision and presence for daily living and eternal life. Each would make a valuable personal study.

  • As the bread of life, Jesus nourishes and sustains us with spiritual food. (John 6)
  • As the light of the world, He guides us and illumines our paths for living and to eternal life. (John 8)
  • As the door of the sheep, He protects us from attacks and predators. (John 10)
  • As the resurrection and the life, He assures us the grave is not final when we place our trust in Him. (John 11)
  • As the good shepherd, Jesus cares and watches over us. (John 10)
  • As the way, the truth, and the life, Jesus said He marked out the only way to eternal life. (John 14)
  • As He is the true vine, we can grow and bear fruit for the kingdom as we attach ourselves to Him. (John 15)

How can we practically relate to His introductions?

All of Jesus’ names are significant, but one—shepherd—is difficult to relate to in the 21st century.

Even though Jesus’ audience was well acquainted with shepherds, we are not.

Yet the Word of God is timeless, and His reference to shepherds is intentional, personal, and applicable.

To fully appreciate what Jesus communicates, we need to understand the relationship of shepherds to sheep. And as we do, we find it is one of the most endearing names and roles He offers.

Shepherds and sheep have a sweet relationship. Several YouTube videos illustrate how well sheep know their shepherd’s call and ignore others.

Sheep respond to their shepherd’s voice alone and follow his lead; they tune out other voices. Why? They know their shepherd provides and cares for them.

  • Jesus says, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” (John 10:27 NIV

In her book, Psalm 23–The Shepherd with Me,** Jennifer Rothschild explains sheep need guidance and are vulnerable to predators and threats. Valuable and loved, their shepherd protects and steers them in the right direction.

** This link is an affiliate link, see disclosure policy.

Jesus considers us His sheep, and like sheep, we have the same needs. Where does that leave us, as sheep wandering through life? Our part is to learn to hear, follow, and enjoy His protection.

3 things we can do to know God’s voice

1. Time

As we spend more time in Bible study, we recognize and understand God’s voice apart from others.

We become so familiar with His voice and truth that we judge opinions and ideas up against His Word.

We evaluate and move closer to our Shepherd. His voice becomes the one to follow as we make decisions, face challenges, and develop relationships. Like real sheep, we ignore other voices.

  • 2 Timothy 3:16 NASB All Scripture is inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for rebuke, for correction, for training in righteousness.” 

2. Prayer

Our shepherd is trustworthy to give us wisdom and discernment, not only through His Word but in prayer.

  • James 1:5 NIV “If any of you lack wisdom, you should ask God…”

Like a shepherd leads his flock, Jesus our shepherd will lead us on the right path and at the right time.

Unless we pray and ask for guidance and discernment, we won’t know His direction but will wander aimlessly or go on the wrong path.

  • Jeremiah 33:3 ESV Call to me and I will answer you and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.”

3. Quiet

A ding telling us a text has arrived, social media at our fingertips, and our busyness compete with time and opportunities for stillness before God.

It takes discipline to carve out intentional quiet moments to hear—like sheep—our shepherd’s voice.

Our ears need to be ready to listen. I not only speak as I praise, confess, ask, and give thanks in prayer, I need to be quiet and listen.

God will speak to me when I pray.

It’s difficult to hear clearly when other noises cover the one voice that is truth and can lead us on the right path. Contentment comes from quiet. 

But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content.

Psalm 131:2 NIV

If I am quiet enough, I can hear the Holy Spirit speak. It may come as a scripture brought to remembrance or give me a check when I am headed in the wrong direction.

Perhaps I will be reminded of God’s love and faithfulness. Distractions and noise keep us from finding those treasures.

  • But look at Psalm 46:10 NIV Be still and know that I am God.

The whole verse is important, not only is it important to be still, there is something else the verse tells us. There is a transition word: “and” . What follows: knowing God reigns.

Once we are in a quiet position to listen, we can learn, trust, and follow.

Our good Shepherd loves us

One look at shepherds’ relationships with their sheep shows us how shepherds’ delight in caring for their sheep.

They know their sheep well and call them to receive food and protection.

Jesus knows us too—by name—and calls us.

“I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father…” (John 10:14-15) Jesus knows all about us and loves us completely. (Psalm 103:14, Psalm 139

The introduction as the good Shepherd is full of benefits and personal care, but there is more

The good shepherd meets our needs for eternity. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep…I lay down my life for the sheep.” (John 10:11, 15 NIV)

Beaten and crucified, our good shepherd willingly gave His life for us. “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again.” (John 10:18 ESV)

At first glance, Jesus as the good shepherd is an unusual and unfamiliar introduction to relate to contemporary living, but its application offers timeless value as we live out our Christian walks.

Our Shepherd– the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20 ESV)—moves beyond His provision of temporal care in green pastures to eternal life.

In the comments, let me know what are your responses as a sheep to Jesus, your Good Shepherd? How do you see His provision for you? And how do you relate to your part in the relationship?

Marilyn Nutter- Bio and picture
a picture of a shepherd leading his sheep as the sun rises. Below the picture are the words; Discover who God is, Jesus is the Good Shepherd. One Determined Life

Jesus is The Prince of Peace

About 8 years ago, I stopped watching the news. It was just too full of horrible events going on around the world. I found myself more anxious and scared. As a young mom, I knew something had to change. Not only did I stop watching the news, but I started focusing on Jesus. Jesus is the Prince of Peace.

To continue my blogging series about the names of God, I want to share with you a post from Lisa Dean.

Lisa is a writer passionate about helping people cling to the peace only Jesus can provide. She writes and creates resources to invite readers on a journey of cultivating and claiming the peace of God. You can find her online at lisazdean.com or follow her on Instagram @lisazdean.

This post contains Affiliate Links, see Disclosure Policy.

a picture of white doves flying in a blue sky. Beside the picture are the words Prince of Pace. Powerful names of God blog series. One Determined Life

Jesus is the Prince of Peace

Although the conversation happened over ten years ago, I remember it vividly. I sat at a cafe table cradling a cup of lukewarm coffee between my hands. In recent days I had experienced a depressive slump and couldn’t seem to lift myself out of it. I looked at my friend and asked her, “If we’re Christians, we’re supposed to have the peace of God, right?” She nodded her head.

“Then why doesn’t it always feel that way?”

My friend could only answer, with a knitted brow, “I don’t know…” I looked out the nearby window feeling the weight of my emotions not understanding why my life wasn’t lining up with God’s promise of peace.

Maybe you’ve encountered this disconnect between biblical truth and the emotions you feel, or maybe you’re experiencing it right now. 

Jesus tells us He gives us peace.

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you”
(John 14:27a).

Why then, do we not always feel at peace?

Why does it seem our peace is here one moment and broken to shards around our feet the next?

We want to believe he gives us peace and is our peace, but our lives can often look and feel chaotic.

It’s easy to conclude that since God and His Word are truth, and His Word promises peace, then the problem is us.

Have you ever wondered if there’s something you’re doing (or not doing) that is messing up the perfect peace of Jesus?

Before we can sort out the problem, we first have to understand the biblical definition of peace and what God’s promises about peace mean for us today.

Definition of Biblical Peace

Peace, as the world might define it, is the absence of conflict. World peace is wished for by pageant contestants.

Nobel peace prizes are awarded to those making strides to bring nations into an agreement, to end fighting, and dispel threats of war.

The world might also define peace as the absence of inner conflict and the ability to fall asleep at night without a care in the world. 

While these definitions of peace may be like the biblical definition, it’s important to make the distinction.

“Peace” often appears in our Bibles as the translated Hebrew word “shalom.”

Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance defines “shalom” as “completeness, soundness, welfare, peace.” 

Biblical peace is not found in you or me, unless Jesus is found in you or me.

Jesus is the embodiment, agent, and only source of lasting peace.

There is no true peace found apart from him.

To understand how this could be, we go back to the creation story. 

Peace as God Intended

When God moulded the world and breathed life into animals and humans, He “saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31a).

Adam and Eve existed in perfect harmonious fellowship with God.

When the lies of Satan and the sin of a man popped the bubble of perfection, it swept away their intimate fellowship with the Father.

Peace shattered like a mirror, and in its place sadness, remorse, and longing took root in all mankind.

The good news of Isaiah 9:6 promises that the brokenness caused by sin will not reign forever.

A Prince of Peace was coming:

  • Isaiah 9:6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Reconciling Peace

The peace of Jesus restores what was broken in the Garden of Eden.

Jesus came to bridge the gap between God and man. The most important definition of peace is the one that results in our reconciliation with God.

  • Romans 5:1 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

In this sense of the word, peace isn’t a feeling at all. It’s the restoration and healing of our fellowship with God made possible by Jesus Christ. 

However, there is a connection between the peace we have with God and our emotions.

  • Romans 8:6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

When we sit and savor the wonder of the gospel, we feed our affection for God and uncover the accompanying experiences of delight and freedom. 

Surpassing Peace

The second biblical definition of peace is one that describes the experience of our hearts and minds.

One of the most well-known verses on peace,

  • Philippians 4:7 assures us that “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

The Greek word “peace” in this verse is used in various ways throughout the Bible.

One of The Blue Letter Bible’s usages is described as “the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is.”

In other words, the more tightly we cling to life in Jesus, the more loosely we hold the temporary life we live on this side of heaven, and the more serenity our soul gains.

While we live out this life, we have great peace knowing we never do it alone.

We do not walk through any valley of darkness or climb up any sunny peak apart from God’s presence. He is with us and for us, regardless of what comes our way.

This aspect of peace is one we can actively nurture and cultivate.

The more we know God, sit in His presence, and delight in Him, the greater our peace and joy.

Speaking of meditating on the truth, J. I. Packer says, “it is as we enter more and more deeply into this experience of being humbled and exalted that our knowledge of God increases, and with it our peace, or strength and our joy” (Knowing God, p. 23).

Coming Peace

The third description of biblical peace speaks to relationships and conflict.

Paul instructs us saying,

  • Romans 12:18 so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all

As Christians, we should seek to forgive and show grace and mercy. We reflect the light and peace of God into a dark and broken world.

Notice that Paul doesn’t tell us to live peaceably at any cost.

There are situations that warrant a confrontation of sin, and we must risk discomfort out of love for people and obedience to Christ.

Jesus even says,

  • Matthew 10:34 Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.

We must understand the fact that loyalty to Jesus comes at a cost. That cost may look like sacrificing peace with friends and family. 

Just as the Jews anticipated the advent of the Prince of Peace, we now anticipate His return—a time when perfect peace will reign.

On that day, wolves and lambs will coexist without bloodshed (Isaiah 11:6), and “death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore” (Revelation 21:4).

People will cease to inflict wounds on one another, and we will live in unity.

The Timeline of Peace

Jesus’s death and resurrection guarantee a future of perfect peace among His people, but the fullness of that reality isn’t here yet.

We live in an in-between time.

  • In the past, our Prince of Peace died and rose again. Because of Him, a reconciled and restored fellowship with God is now available to all who put their faith and trust in Jesus. 
  • In the present, while we wait for Jesus the Prince of Peace to return, how we experience peace in our hearts and minds is dependent on our ability to grasp, dwell, and soak in the reality of our new life in Christ.
  • In the future, God will usher in a new heaven and a new earth where every ugly word spoken and every painful wound inflicted will vanish. Peace in every sense will be restored and The Prince of Peace will sit on the throne forever.

When I think back on my conversation at the coffee shop, I wish I could time travel and tell my younger self and my friend that there is something we can do to nurture and cultivate our peace.

I would say, “Pursue knowing God. Prioritize Him before all else. Even when you don’t feel it or experience it, God’s promise of peace is real and true. Set your mind on the good news of the gospel, and as your understanding deepens, so will your peace.”

While we Wait

The peace that Jesus offers is different and better than that of the world.

Inner serenity and the absence of conflict are not guaranteed on this side of heaven.

In fact, we see Jesus himself was the focal point of conflict and dissension before his murder. Leading up to his death, we know he was sweating drops of blood because of the internal anguish he experienced.

But we are not without hope.

Jesus already paved the path to peace by purchasing our reconciliation with God.

We have not yet experienced the fullness of peace because we still dwell in a broken world.

Our “already” but “not yet” reality means we can pursue peace today knowing one day we will find complete wholeness and healing in His presence. The shattered pieces of peace will be put right again.

Isaiah 2:4 describes our future when tools of war will be converted to tools of farming. Immediately following those verses the Bible says,

  • Isaiah 2:5 Come…let us walk in the light of the LORD

While we wait, let’s walk in obedience to Christ, our Prince of Peace.

For a practical way to pursue peace, checkout her free Journaling Toolkit: A Prayerful Approach to Fostering Peace, Contentment, and Growth.

In The comments below, share how Jesus the Prince of Peace has impacted your life.

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