Friday, May 13, 2016


“Redemption” is one of those words that we often use in a theological sense but, interestingly enough, isn’t rooted in theology but in real life slavery. Redemption is literally buying a person out of slavery and then setting them free. It is a life-changing event that changes a person’s reality forever. Take, for example, a twelve-year-old girl named Anesha.
Anesha, who lives in an impoverished area of a developing nation, knows what it is like to be redeemed and have her whole life changed. For when she was a toddler her parents took out a loan to buy some land and seed in order to try and make a living as farmers. Unfortunately, severe drought struck the area and they lost their crops two years in a row, rendering them unable to pay back their debt. The man they had borrowed from was unscrupulous as well as merciless; he compounded the outrageous interest that had been agreed upon and soon the family was way over their heads in debt and was unable to pay off the loan.
With no other options, Anesha’s parents gave up on their dreams of prosperity and moved into the run-down servant’s quarters owned by the loan shark and went to work to try and pay off their debt by working in his fields, cleaning his house, cooking his food, and generally doing everything he demanded seven days a week with very little time off. Anesha and her siblings grew up working for the loan shark as well, for no matter how many hours the family worked, it was never enough to pay for the interest on the loan, let alone the principal.
Anesha knew no other life; she was born into bondage and had worked every day of her life for as long as she could remember. She couldn’t read nor write and knew very little of the outside world. All she knew was that she had to do what the master wanted or she would be whipped, beaten, or punished in some other cruel way. She often thought of running away, but she didn’t know where to run or how to support herself and the thought of what the master would do to her parents, brothers, and sisters kept her in bondage as surely as any steel chains would have.
And then one day the master came and told her that she was now old enough to go and work for someone else and that by being sold she would bring in money to help her parents pay off their debt. So, with little choice in the matter, Anesha soon found herself standing on a table in a crowded back room with many men looking her over. Anesha wondered what they wanted from her and began to cry as she realized how desperate her situation was.
Many of the men leered at her and made suggestive comments while others asked about her strength and work skills. One, though, was different. He looked upon her with eyes full of love and compassion. Anesha felt a peace that seemed to emanate from him that she had never felt before.
The bidding started in earnest, with many making bids, but the man of peace would not be outdone. He eventually won the bidding war, and when Anesha walked over to him, wondering what he would have her do, he bent down and looked her in the eyes and said, "Anesha, you are free. You don’t have to serve me or work for me."
            Tears of joy began to roll down her eyes as Anesha took in what was happening to her. Not only would she no longer have to work in the fields or clean the master’s house, she was set free forever and would never have to worry about being abused or mistreated again.  She went from being a slave to a taskmaster to being free to go where she wanted and work for whomever she pleased. The choices were many, and as she thought about her future, it came to her that what she wanted more than anything was to simply be with the one who had paid the price and set her free.
So Anesha dropped to her knees, and with a tremble in her voice she said, “Sir, could I come and stay with you? I will serve you and try to earn my keep. I just want to be with you and be thankful and try to pay back all that you have done for me.”
The man of peace looked at her with a huge smile and a twinkle in his eye and said, “Daughter – for that is what you will be to me from now on – you can stay with me for as long as you like for there is plenty of room in my house. But you will be neither servant nor slave but will instead be my friend and daughter.”
Anesha went with him and never regretted it. Her new life was so much better than her past one that she couldn’t even put it into words. She served with joy and told everyone she met about what had happened and how her life had changed. And when the man of peace heard about her family and the bondage they lived under, he redeemed them as well.
Today Anesha knows well what it is to be redeemed – to be bought out of slavery, to have an unpayable debt paid off for you, to be set free from a cruel taskmaster. And, if she were here with us today, she would tell you that what she lived through is an example of what each of us goes through in this life. We are born into slavery, with a debt that we cannot pay, and Jesus pays it off for us and sets us free to serve Him willingly with joy and thanksgiving in our hearts.
And even though He has every right to demand our loyalty, after all He died on the cross for our sins and He paid the price that sets us free, Jesus doesn’t force us to serve Him or spend time with Him. Instead, He gives us the choice to serve Him willingly or go back to those things that enslaved us – things like unforgiveness, jealousy, bitterness, hatred, lust, greed, covetousness, arrogance, addictions, and all the other unhealthy behaviors and attitudes that bring sorrow and destruction into our lives.
If you have never been redeemed, if you have never placed your faith in Jesus and asked him to redeem you and set you free from all that selfish garbage that pulls you down, ask Him to be your Savior and to set you free from all those destructive attitudes and behaviors that war against your soul. He will do it – He will set you free and give you a new life in Him that is far removed from your past.
And if you are among those who have been redeemed but have somehow gotten off track and gone back to the taskmaster of selfish sin, destructive addictions, and toxic attitudes, it’s not too late. Turn back to Jesus once again – He paid the price once and for all so don’t stay enslaved to sin but confess it to Him, find forgiveness, and live an abundant life of joy, peace, love and hope in Him.

Let’s Pray Together: Lord Jesus, thank you for redeeming me, for paying the price and setting me free from sin by dying on the cross. Thank you that I am no longer a slave to sin but am free to serve you. Deliver me from these sins and destructive tendencies that I bring before you now… (Continue praying as you feel led…)

Note: While Anesha’s story is fictional, it is a reality lived by many trapped in poverty or even modern-day slavery. To help someone like Anesha escape poverty, sponsor a child at To find out more about modern day slavery, do a Google search to find organizations that are involved in stopping human trafficking.

This devotional is authored and published by Randy Brockett. All publishing rights are reserved but readers are encouraged to repost (please include this copyright info) or share his insights with their family, friends, and congregations. For other devotionals by Randy, see,, and 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

What Is Your Inheritance?

            As you ask yourself that question, your mind will likely go to finances, as most of us think of an inheritance in terms of how much money or property will become ours when our parents die. But an inheritance can be so much more – the color of your eyes, the shape of your body, the way you speak, the manner in which you carry yourself – there is so much that we receive from our parents through genetics and through their example to us.
            So then, when we ask ourselves about our inheritance, we are really asking, “Who are my parents? What kind of people are they? What have they passed on to me already and what will pass on to me when they die?”
            Each of us will have a different answer to the above when we are thinking about our earthly parents. But when it comes to our Father in heaven, there are many things that every believer in Christ has inherited already and many others that everyone in Christ will inherit in the age to come. Sure, there will be some differences in how God blesses each of us in terms of earthly blessings, spiritual gifts, and natural talents, but there are many things that belong to all of us who are in Christ simply because we have been adopted as God’s children and we all receive His inheritance.
            So what is our inheritance in Christ Jesus? What is our inheritance as children of God? What have we inherited already and what still remains to be inherited in the future? What comes to your mind when we talk about our inheritance in the Lord? A million things flooded my mind (or so it seemed!) and I think it is way too much to try to list them all in this short devotional. Instead, let’s focus on some foundational truths about our inheritance in Christ.
First of all, our inheritance is based upon our relationship with the Father. We receive an inheritance because we belong to Him. We are His children, adopted in Christ Jesus, and are the rightful heirs to everything He has. Think about that. Those of us who are in Christ are children of the King, sons and daughters of the Most High God, and He owns everything and shares it with us now as He sees fit. In the fullness of time, we will inherit the Promised Land and live in eternity in our Father’s House. There will be no more crying there and no more pain because everyone will know the Father and be like Him.
Secondly, we receive from God every day of our lives as we live for Him – patterning our lives after Him and living the way He showed us and taught us in Jesus. As we live in Christ, in that realm of being connected and rooted in Him, we become more and more like Him. We inherit His characteristics, His values, His way of thinking, His way of seeing things, as we pattern our lives after Him. We begin to love people as He does. We begin to have joy, peace, and contentment like Him. The more we pattern our lives after our Father the more we become like Him.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, God Himself is our inheritance. We are His inheritance and He is our inheritance. We belong to Him and He belongs to us. We are one with Him in the same way that a bride waits for her groom. We belong to Him and we long for the day when we will be together forever. In a very real sense everything that He has is ours, as He willingly shares with us and blesses us in ways we can’t even imagine or think, but we still long for the time when He will come and set everything right.
So let me ask you again. What is your inheritance? Your spiritual and eternal inheritance, that is. The one you receive from your Father in heaven, not your earthly parents. If you have asked Jesus to be your Lord and Savior, then you are a child of God and can look forward to inheriting eternal life and everlasting peace with your Father. It’s an inheritance that is incorruptible; it will never rot nor fade away nor be lost by any means at all. And, as if that were not enough, you are receiving from Him today – His love, peace, joy and many other spiritual blessings – as you pattern your life after Him.

Let’s Pray Together: Father, thank you that through Jesus I have such a great inheritance – life with You forever! Help me to live in Christ, to pattern my life after yours, so that I might become more and more like you. Show me how to live, and give me your love, peace, and joy even now. Take away any anxiety, and help me to set my eyes on you and the great inheritance that You have for me. Help me with these concerns that I bring before you now… (continue praying as you feel led)

This devotional is authored and published by Randy Brockett. All publishing rights are reserved but readers are encouraged to repost (please include this copyright info) or share his insights with their family, friends, and congregations. For other devotionals by Randy, see,, and 


            With tears running down his cheeks and uncontrollable sobs shaking him to his core, the missionary stumbled through the stench-filled alley, stepping over the rubbish and debris, holding out his hands to either side of him as he prayed for the impoverished children huddled up under newspapers between the cans of trash.
            “Oh Lord, what can I do to help these children? There is no more room in the orphanage and I can’t take them all home with me. I can only afford to take one or maybe two at the most.”
            And then it came to him, a small whisper within his heart that must have come from God, “Take the one who calls out to you; I will take care of the rest.”          
            Within seconds, one of the children looked out from under the trash he was using as a blanket, and looked right at the missionary with imploring eyes, and said, “Please, mister, I don’t think I can make it another night out here in the cold.”
            The missionary stopped, helped the boy to his feet, and told him, “Come on, son, we are going home.”        
            From that day forward the boy was no longer an orphan out in the cold but was instead the son of the missionary. He no longer lived in the streets but had a nice warm home with plenty of food, people who loved him, and everything he needed. And as for the rest of the orphans, the missionary spread the word and many others were adopted as well.  
            To many of us, this story is hard to believe or relate to since we live in a land of plenty where most of us have homes and plenty to eat. But there are many impoverished children in the world and organizations like Compassion International do a good job of reaching out and caring for them; they are worthy of your support.
            All of us, though, whether rich or poor by worldly standards, are like those orphans in the alley – left to our own abilities and devices, we are spiritually impoverished, dressed in rags, stuck out in the cold huddling under the trash of unforgiveness, hatred, lust, greed, selfishness, and all the rest.
            We must look out from under all that crap and lift our eyes to the Missionary – Jesus – who is able to reach down and lift up all who call upon Him. He looks upon the orphan who calls out to Him, saying, “Come on, son, let’s go home. Come with me, daughter, and you will live with Me forever. The garbage you have been living under will be a thing of the past; from now on you will live with Me in my Father’s mansion. We have many rooms and you will be well-provided for.”
            The Father is speaking to many of you right now as you read this. He is looking to see if you will lift your eyes to Him and call out for His help. He wants to make you His son or daughter. In fact, He has already made a way for that to happen through the cross of Jesus. Because Jesus died for your sins, all you have to do is call out to Him, recognizing that He died for your sins and rose again from the dead and even now is at the right hand of the Father, interceding for you and waiting for you to call out to Him.
            Many of us have already made that decision and called out to God; we are included in Christ so we know that we have been adopted as His children. We know what it was like to live without Christ in our lives – we know the cold chill of spiritual poverty, of living under the trash heap of sin and selfishness. And we know how much better it is to live in Christ, in our Father’s house, where there is love, joy, peace, and every spiritual blessing that Christ brings into our lives.
            So wherever you are at today, whether you just now called out to God, or have been living in His house for a long time, or are still just thinking about it, pray now and talk to God and either ask Him to be your Father or thank Him for being your Father, whichever seems appropriate to you. And if He adopted you a long time ago but you haven’t been living in His House – maybe you have been distracted by the world, carried away by temptations, or hurt by other people – whatever has become between you and God, talk to Him about it and get right with Him.
            In my Father’s house there are many rooms, and He has one with your name on it.

Let’s Pray Together: Father God, thank you that I can call you Father. Thank you that through Jesus I am adopted as your child, delivered from living out in the cold under the trash heap of my past and brought into Your house of love, mercy, and grace. Thank you that Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead so that I can have a new life as Your child. Help me to live for you in Christ, in that place of being connected to You, breathing in Your life, living in Your house. Help me to turn away from sinful desires that war against my soul and turn to You again and again and again. Fill me with Your love, Your joy, Your peace, and help me live for You in these situations that I bring before You now… (continue praying as you feel led)
Scriptures to Study: Ephesians 1:3-6, John 14:1-6, Galatians 4:1-7

This devotional is authored and published by Randy Brockett. All publishing rights are reserved but readers are encouraged to repost (please include this copyright info) or share his insights with their family, friends, and congregations. For other devotionals by Randy, see,, and 

Monday, May 2, 2016

Chosen in Christ

            Take a moment to imagine these scenes:
            A sandy-haired fifth-grader walking home from the park, his chin on his chest and his tear-filled eyes on the grass; nobody wanted him to be on their team.
            An angry and hurt middle-aged man, swearing under his breath as he carries the contents of his desk out to his car; he pushed for the promotion and got the pink slip instead.  
            Ordinary-looking kids, guys along one wall of the junior high gym and girls on the other, all looking hopeful as they wait to be asked to dance; many go home feeling rejected and unwanted.
            A beautiful young bride-to-be, dressed in her gown and ready for the aisle, tears messing up her mascara as the bridesmaids try to console her; the groom-to-be changed his mind at the last minute.
            Scenes like these are a part of life; we all know what it feels like to not be chosen for the team or the job or the relationship or whatever. We all know the sting of rejection and inner hurt that comes from not measuring up to someone else’s expectations. And for all of us who have placed our trust in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, there is a truth that brings us healing and great joy: God chose us!
            He chose us! He chose you! Let that truth sink deep into your innermost being and let it heal your soul and dispel the pain of all those past hurts and rejections. For if God chose you, if He loves you and is there for you, who can stand against you? Who can stand in judgment against you when you are a child of the King? Who are they to judge someone who is a servant of the Most High and a friend of Almighty God? 
            God’s opinion of you over-rules the opinions of men and women. And when He sees you, He sees you as someone that Jesus died for, who is valuable and has been chosen to be holy and righteous, set apart for His own purposes, with an eternal destiny in heaven and earthly purposes He will help you fulfill. 
            Of course, at the time when we made the decision to follow Jesus, we thought that we were choosing Him. But God comes along and says, “I have known you since the day you were born and I knew all along the choices you would make and I have chosen you to represent Me to the world. You are the light of the world and the salt of the earth. You are my voice; speak my words of life to the dying. You are my hands; reach out and take care of the needy and hurting. You are my feet; carry me to those who need my touch. You are my chosen vessel; Me in you and you in Me; together we can bring hope and life to those around you.”
            You see, my friend, God has chosen you and me for reasons and purposes that far surpass our own understanding. As we live in Christ, in that place or realm where we are connected to Him and led by Him and filled with Him, we will grow in Him and do things that we would never have dreamed of without Him. For he chose us and has plans for us and will do great things through us as we live in Him.
            So rejoice! God chose you! And only He knows the plans and future of those whom He has chosen. But I can tell you this – it’s going to be good!

Let’s Pray Together:

            Thank you, Father, that you have chosen me. Let that truth sink deeply in my soul. Heal me of all those past hurts and feelings of rejection. I know you have chosen me for purposes and reasons that you are still revealing to me; make them clear to me and lead me into everything that you have for me. I give you my life and all that I am; help me to live my life in Christ, in your presence, in the center of your will, with your Holy Spirit within me to lead me and guide me and equip me with everything I need to do your will. I pray that your will would be done and your kingdom would come in my life and in these situations that I bring before you now… (continue praying as you feel led)

This devotional is authored and published by Randy Brockett. All publishing rights are reserved but readers are encouraged to repost (please include this copyright info) or share his insights with their family, friends, and congregations. For other devotionals by Randy, see,, and 

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Living in Christ

Living In Christ
Frustrated and angry, I stomped around the sanctuary spewing out all sorts of complaints to the Lord about the people he had given me to lead. So and so thinks this about me….he just doesn’t get it, doesn’t understand the vision I have for the church….she just opposes and ridicules everything I say…when will they stop being stumbling blocks in front of me and become supporters behind me?

And then the Lord spoke to me, “I was just thinking the same about you! When will you stop running around chasing your own agenda and just spend some time with Me? Will you ever just stop thinking about yourself and your pursuit of success and just listen to what I have to say?”

That hit me right where it hurts, right in the core of my innermost being, for I had been preaching on who we are in Christ – sons and daughters of the Most High, not just servants of God but His friends, forgiven for our mistakes and redeemed from our harmful behavior patterns, given new lives as new creations, holy and set apart to serve God and be a blessing to the world – and here I was going back to the same insane pursuit of worldly success that had ruled my life for so many years.

Somehow my new values in Christ had taken a backseat to the pressures of starting a new church and seeing it grow strong enough to support me and my family. I knew that I needed to live in Christ – in that sphere or realm or reality of living in Him, being connected to Him, being rooted in Him, being in His presence, breathing in His Holy Spirit, the very breath of God – and I also knew that I hadn’t had that kind of experience in a long time.

Sure, I believed the right things and even studied the Bible and taught others, and if I had died right then I know the Lord would have had mercy on me and brought me to heaven with Him because I had placed my faith in Christ and not my own good works. But there was a huge void in my life, a longing in my soul, feelings of anger, unforgiveness, and inadequacy when there should have been joy, love, forgiveness, and all the blessings of beings in Christ.

And all this because somewhere along the way I neglected to carve out time to sit at the feet of my Savior. I took Him and His work on the cross for granted, and I no longer thanked Him for it or talked to Him in prayer or sang spontaneous praises to His name. Instead, I dwelled on the tough circumstances of my life and my own shortcomings.

Don’t get me wrong – I was still saved by His grace and in the eternal view of things I was in Christ and going to heaven – but experientially in this world I was not living in Christ. I wasn’t living the abundant life, I wasn’t seeing my prayers answered, I didn’t have the joy, peace, and love that comes when one abides in Christ because I wasn’t living in Christ. I had accepted Him as Savior and then somewhere along the way I basically told Him to sit back and watch all that I was going to do for Him.

I was zealous and passionate about planting a new church, but in all the busy-ness and craziness of life I quit spending time being in Christ, in that whole new atmosphere of being in Him. By His grace I was still a new creation in Him, but I was like a branch disconnected from the vine; my life source became a distant thing of the past rather than a living reality.

Most of you who are reading this now can likely relate to what I am describing, whether it happened to you in the past or you are currently going through something similar or perhaps you haven’t yet asked Jesus to be your Lord and Savior. In any case, draw near to Him and surrender your life to Him, trusting that He can bring far better things into your life than you can possibly think or imagine.

That is what happened to me – I remembered that old quote that “the life of Christ is not possible without the life of Christ” – and I realized I was trying to live a Christian life without having the life of Christ be an ongoing reality in my life. I made some changes, got my priorities right by giving Him first place in my life, and I have never regretted it. Life has had its ups and downs but as long as I am abiding in Him, living life in His presence, staying connected to Him, I have had a lot of joy, peace, and love for people and for Him. And that has made all the difference.

Let’s Pray Together: Lord, I want the peace, the joy, the love that comes from knowing You and living in You. I give you my life, knowing that you gave Yours for mine on the cross and that you are alive today at the right hand of the Father, interceding for me and for all those who love you. Help me to live for you, to live in Christ, in that realm of being connected to you, breathing in Your presence, experiencing your love, joy, and peace. Help me to overcome those distractions and temptations that keep me from living in Christ and experiencing all your blessings. Help me especially with these issues that I bring before you now…(continue praying as you feel led)

This devotional is authored and published by Randy Brockett. All publishing rights are reserved but readers are encouraged to repost (please include this copyright info) or share his insights with their family, friends, and congregations. For other devotionals by Randy, see,, and