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Advent and Christmas Celebration

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day 9, January 2

Joe Talhelm

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[9th Day of Christmas:  Nathan Harris]

2 Corinthians 7:1 "Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

To follow up on yesterday's devotional, to make changes in our lives that will last a lifetime, each of us needs to do a few things every day. Paul first reminds us that God has filled the Bible with promises for the changed person. He has given us promises that will never change and will always be there for the person who has changed through the power of Jesus Christ. And with those promises we are to cleanse ourselves from all things of the past. We are to cleanse ourselves of all the fleshly attitudes, habits, and living. Then, each day we are to allow God to make us holy as we serve Him in respect and love.

To allow real change to take effect and to become a lifestyle there are three things (according to one writer) that we must understand.  And they are all found in Scripture. First, we must understand that our lives are not futile. We have reason for living, we have purpose for our life, and we have a part in God's plan in history.

Second, we need to believe that our failures are not fatal. We will fail from time to time. We will bomb out in our decisions. We will make a fool of ourselves at one time or another - but it is not the end of the world. Our failures are NOT fatal.

Then third, we need to remember that our death is not final. There is life after death, there is a reward for good, clean living. There is a real reason for our being. And there is true happiness for eternity. With these truths in mind - we will have a great year. We will enjoy true peace every single day of our lives.

Have a great year.

~ Joe Talhelm
Crowley, Louisiana, USA

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Phil. 4:13

Daily Scripture Readings*
[Psalm 34] [1 Kings 19:1-8] [Eph 4:1-16] [John 6:1-14]


I don't like to fail. I don't think I'm alone in that. But, I also know that it is only as I make myself vulnerable in response to Your leadership that I accomplish anything for You. Thank You for Your grace which makes provision for those times when my vulnerability does not achieve what I hoped it would. Remind me that even when I fail, there is still acceptance to be found in You. Lord, help me to be courageous enough to follow You, no matter what I am to do, or where I am to go.


*These readings are adapted from the Daily Office of the Book of Common Prayer, Year 2.  For Year 1 readings, see Daily Readings, Christmas 1

Music provided by Victrolla Music Praise and Worship.  Background provided by The Bud.
  Graphics for the Twelve Days of Christmas by Detroit News.
The Animations were designed by Nathan Harris. These are used with permission.

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