ISBN-10:
1452016372
ISBN-13:
9781452016375
Pub. Date:
Publisher:
Devotions from the Desert: Encountering God

Devotions from the Desert: Encountering God

by Shon Neyland

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Overview

This book encourages the reader to seek the face and will of God in the midst of adversity and the daily challenges of life. Further, the reader will be led through a series of mediations, thoughts, and inspirational messages as they seek to encounter God. Although the book was written during war and military deployment, the motivational devotions and life lessons are applicable to all. The colorful war and deployment images throughout the book help bring the quotes, scriptures, thoughts, and prayers alive. Additionally, the book contains commentary from Airmen, Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Iraqis, and Coalition partners that adds an authentic richness to our spirituality and connection to God. This book demonstrates the true evidence of the hand of God in our daily lives. The chaplain's thoughts are timely, practical, and uplifting.


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781452016375
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Publication date: 06/24/2010
Pages: 164
Product dimensions: 8.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.43(d)

First Chapter

DEVOTIONS FROM THE DESERT

ENCOUNTERING GOD
By Shon Neyland

AuthorHouse

Copyright © 2010 Dr. Shon Neyland
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4520-1637-5


Chapter One

Clear Vision

"Give us clear vision that we may know where to stand and what to stand for-because unless we stand for something, we shall fall for anything." Peter Marshall, Scottish and American Minister, 1902-1949

Scripture: Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he. Proverbs 29:18 KJV

Chaplain's Thought: Vision applies to every aspect of this journey of life. Life without vision can be quite frustrating. I have found that it is quite easy to become stagnant and not have a clear plan for life. Vision means knowing who you are and seeing what you are to become. We have a vision for victory in the war on terrorism. In the same way, we need a vision for our personal lives, our families, and our marriages. Let us look to the Lord for His vision and he will show us the way.

Prayer: Mighty God we thank you for your insight and direction. We pray your blessings on us as we seek your plan for our lives. Give us vision and hope for the future. We ask this in your Holy Name. Amen.

Patience

"Teach us, O Lord, the disciplines of patience, for to wait is often harder than to work." Peter Marshall, American Television Personality, b.1926

Scripture: Wait on the Lord, be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say on the Lord. Psalm 27:14 KJV

Chaplain's Thought: Patience is sometimes hard to demonstrate especially when we are away from our families and living in the face of the constant pressures and stress of war. However, if we wait on the Lord, our hearts will be encouraged. Let's not panic, nor live in fear for the Lord is in our midst. Things may not be as we would like them to be, but don't give up or become weary in well doing-keep working and moving forward one day at a time.

Prayer: Father, you are all powerful and in control of our lives. Help us to rely on your strength and to wait for your timing in every circumstance. Thank you Lord for victory and peace in our lives and in our mission. Amen.

Courage

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do." Eleanor Roosevelt, Former First Lady, United States, 1884-1962

Scripture: Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: Each Day, we all need courage to draw from. As we press through this war, we need courage to carry us through the end. Courage is what helps to accomplish the mission in the face of overwhelming odds; it is the strength we find in the face of danger. Courage is a gift from God that enables us to see beyond the moment into the eternal eyes of our heavenly Father.

Prayer: Mighty God we praise you for your grace and mercy. Lord, give us the strength to find the courage we need each day. We pray daily for the courage to stand and go forward. Thank you for hearing our prayer. Amen.

Confidence

"Confidence is contagious. So is lack of confidence." Vince Lombardi, American Football Coach, 1913-1970

Scripture: For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken. Proverbs 3:26 KJV

Chaplain's Thought: It is easy to loose confidence through the prolonged war and amid criticisms. However, confidence by definition means to believe in our minds that we can do something. Being confident does not equate to being arrogant, but simply being sure of our abilities. Confidence also comes from knowing our own identity or being sure of who we are. I am confident of our role and what we are doing-it is important; don't loose heart. My encouragement is that we trust in the Lord, the author of our confidence, and go forward with victory.

Prayer: Father God, you are the author and finisher of our faith. Encourage us through this sometimes arduous mission. Help us to believe in ourselves and the task at hand. Give us the confidence to succeed. In your Holy Name we pray. Amen.

"The Plans of the Lord"

I do not like war. I wish that we never had to go to war but then again that would be my plan. My plan would have me staying at home with my wife and children providing for them and comforting them in times of need. In my plan there would be no pain or conflict in my life. My plan would involve a lot more of God's blessings and fewer trials and tribulations. I find it funny how we as an Army and as individuals make plans and then we ask God to bless the plans that we have made. God's plan and our plans do not always match. God knows the plans he has for us and they are for our good although at times it seems like the plans I make will turn out better. God does not need my help in making plans for my life. I have really come to appreciate the fact that God is in charge of planning for my life. He has set out for me a plan and all I need to do is be attentive to His calling for my life. Before God created me He knew that I would be here in Iraq at this appointed time. This is all in accordance with His plan that His name would be glorified. He put me here in order to glorify His name and I often ask myself how can I glorify His name here in Iraq. While here I have grown closer to my Lord through prayer. I know that in Him only is there hope. In no other can I find salvation. In God's plan He knew that I would need Him and that I would call out to Him. I am surely glad God is in charge of the planning of my life.

Robin Stuart LTC C2 Camp Victory Iraq

Faith

"Without faith a man can do nothing; with it all things are possible." Sir William Osler, Canadian Physician, 1849-1919

Scripture: What is faith? It is the confident assurance that what we hope for is going to happen. It is the evidence of things we cannot yet see." Hebrews 11:1 NLT

Chaplain's Thought: Believing God during seemingly impossible situations can be extremely difficult. We all struggle when we don't see the immediate results. However, it is those types of situations that can lead us to greater strength and resolve if we hold on. Our faith grows when we trust God and lean on him no matter how uncertain the circumstances look.

Prayer: Mighty God, we thank you for your presence in our lives. We pray that you revive our hearts to believe. Bless us as we go forward and higher in you. Give us the confidence to exercise our faith and trust in you. Amen.

Fear

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States, 1882-1945

Scripture: But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened. 1 Peter 3:14 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: Who among us has not feared for his or her life at one time or another? Yet the encouragement of the scriptures and from our former President is that fear is not productive to our lives. Fear stagnates and breathes unstableness! When we fear we become unproductive and worrisome. The opposite of fear is trust and faith. If we lean on the Lord, he will comfort our hearts in the midst of battle. Be encouraged and fear not, for the Lord is on our side.

Prayer: Father, you are awesome and powerful. We look to you for daily protection and guidance. Let your power reign in our lives. Your love casts out all fear. We ask that you bless us to trust in you and fear not. Amen.

You are Gifted

"We're all born with wonderful gifts. We use these gifts to express ourselves ... often unaware that we are unique ..." Lynn Johnston, Canadian Cartoonist, b. 1947

Scripture: Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 1 Corinthians 12:7 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: Have you every wondered why you can do some things very well and other things not so well? The answer is simple; we all have differing gifts given by the Spirit as he chooses. You may even believe that you don't have any special abilities, but rest assured that if you are a follower of the Lord, that you have spiritual gifts for the advancement of God's Kingdom. There are over 25 major gifts outlined in the Holy Scriptures. Determine that you will seek God and his scriptures to learn what your gifts are and that upon discovery you will apply the gifts to your daily life as you serve God and mankind.

Prayer: Lord, we ask for your grace and mercy to flourish in our lives. Thank you for the gifts that you have given us for your purpose. Use us now Lord to shape the world for your glory. Thank you for hearing our prayer. Amen.

Perseverance

"Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish." John Quincy Adams, 6th President of the United States, 1767-1848

Scripture: Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: As the days and months go by through this deployment and accomplishing the mission, we can easily get tired and a little burned out. However, the mark in history that we will leave behind is yet to be fully told. The great work and freedom that we are striving to provide will only be realized through perseverance.

Prayer: Holy God, we honor and praise your name. Thank you for the strength to make it through another day. Bless our leaders, nation, military and families as we strive to persevere and serve with honor. Amen.

Dream Again

"Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." Edgar Allan Poe, American Poet, 1809-1849

Scripture: Here comes that dreamer! they said to each other. Come now, let's kill him ... Then we'll see what comes of his dreams! Genesis 37:19,20 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: Are you a dream maker or dream killer? Are you pursuing what God has designed for you or have you become dormant? Most of us have had dreams, but more often than not, we stop dreaming of what we can become. We all get discouraged when things don't turn out exactly as we planned them. However, I want to encourage each of us to dream again. What are your dreams and hopes? Start dreaming again and look for opportunities for growth and success. God has not forgotten you; step out in faith, use your gifts and talents to serve mankind and you will be blessed beyond measure.

Prayer: Mighty God, we humbly ask for your blessings and guidance in our lives. Help us to go forward and to grow in our dreams and destiny. Thank you for your protection and victory. Keep us safe as we serve our nation. Remember our families and loved ones. In your majestic Name we pray. Amen.

Hope

"If you lose hope, somehow you lose the vitality that keeps life moving, you lose that courage to be, that quality that helps you go on in spite of it all ..." Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Civil Rights Leader, 1929-1968

Scripture: Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God ... Psalm 42:5,6 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: Do you find yourself going through the motions of life in a state of sadness, discouragement, and confusion? Perhaps you are feeling depressed while serving away from family and friends. We can counter those feelings with hope. Hope means that we expect something good to happen. Hope is powerful, moving, and life-giving. It is state of mind that looks for possibilities and changes the environment. The Psalmist knew that we have a great advocate in the Savior to help us through every situation. Decide today to move from hopelessness to hopefulness.

Prayer: Father, thank you for your great love and mercy. Today, we look to you for renewed hope and expectations of goodness. Strengthen our minds Lord to believe and receive. Continue to guard the men and women who serve in harms way. Amen.

"God is Here"

God is here and God cares. There seems to be this trap that a soldier falls into in thinking that if there is a god, he either doesn't care or he must not take a side. The problem in that thinking is that He does care. He also takes a side. It may not be a side as per the lines that we have drawn, but He takes the side of good in all situations. The toughest thing for me to come to grips with was in knowing that God wants the terrorist and the insurgent to have a relationship with Him as much as He wants that relationship with you and me. Most of all, it isn't from a devaluing of our relationship with Him that He does this. It is in casting aside our assumptions about the enemy. He doesn't care about how I feel about these people other than how it affects my person and my feelings. He values us all individually as His creation. He loves us all as His own children. How much easier to go home and love your parents and siblings, your wife and children, your neighbors, when you realize that God's love is unceasing, or when you know that God's love surpasses the boundaries even of the person who specifically turns away from Him. How little what someone has done to me appears in light of God's greatness. I thank God for the deployments I've been given, because I don't know if I ever would have understood this concept otherwise.

Love Always and God Bless,

Daniel D. Douglas (Earlham, IA) MNC-I C7 IMO (Baghdad) Fort Bragg, North Carolina Devotions from the Desert

Priorities

"The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities." Stephen Covey, Author and Public Speaker, b. 1932

Scripture: Choose my instruction instead of silver, knowledge rather than choice gold. Proverbs 8:10 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: Perhaps one of the greatest challenges that we will confront in our lives is setting priorities. Our priorities should never be taken lightly for it is in prioritizing and goal setting that we accomplish the mission. Every member in our force is important to the team. Therefore, to reach true success, we need the team to schedule the right priorities.

Prayer: Father, we honor you for your wisdom and grace. May we gain the right perspective in life so that we might be able to live to our fullest potential. Inspire us Lord to be the best that we can be and live a life with purpose. Amen.

Mercy

"I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice." Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States, 1809-1865

Scripture: If a man's gift ... is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. Romans 12:6,8 NIV

Chaplain's Thought: God has shown us great mercy through his love for us. As we serve the nation and the creator, let us consider demonstrating the love of God for one another. Imagine what would happen if we all did a good deed for another. We can impact the world and our community. May I encourage you to take a moment today to show mercy and kindness to someone around you.

Prayer: Mighty God, we are grateful to you for your great love. Lord we ask that you help us to share the blessings that you have given us with one another. May we love as you love and care as you care. Thank you for hearing our prayers. Amen.

(Continues...)



Excerpted from DEVOTIONS FROM THE DESERT by Shon Neyland Copyright © 2010 by Dr. Shon Neyland. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS....................v
Forward....................xi
Preface....................xiii
DEDICATION....................xvii
Clear Vision....................1
Patience....................2
Courage....................3
Confidence....................4
"The Plans of the Lord"....................5
Faith....................6
Fear....................7
You are Gifted....................8
Perseverance....................9
Dream Again....................10
Hope....................11
"God is Here"....................12
Priorities....................13
Mercy....................14
Excellence....................15
Honesty....................16
Defeat the Enemy....................17
Humility....................18
Joy....................19
"Living of our Faith"....................20
Loneliness....................21
Love....................22
Peace....................23
Power of Prayer....................24
Presence of God....................25
Protection....................26
"The Seasons of God"....................27
Right Foundation....................28
Seeking God....................29
State of Mind....................30
Strength....................31
Success....................32
Trust....................33
Wisdom....................34
"Nothing Can Separate Us"....................35
Don't Worry....................36
Focus....................37
Comfort....................38
Teamwork....................39
"Called to Serve"....................40
Responsibility....................41
Commitment to the Lord....................42
Courage to Stand....................43
Deliverance....................44
"God is in Control"....................45
Determination....................46
Favor....................47
Freedom....................48
God Can Use You....................49
God is Always on Time....................50
God's Healing....................51
God's Justice....................52
Grace....................53
Guiding Word....................54
Keep on Asking....................55
"The Process"....................56
Living Water....................57
Make a Difference....................59
Overcoming Stress....................60
"Staying Alive Your Whole Life"....................61
Potential....................62
Fruit Producer....................63
Safety....................64
Seek the Light....................65
Strength for Battle....................66
Suffering....................67
"A Complex Life"....................68
Thanksgiving....................69
Walking with Angels....................70
Wise Leadership....................71
You are a Winner....................72
Finding Truth....................73
"Depend on God"....................74
Heavenly Thoughts....................75
Almighty God....................76
Be a Gift....................77
Challenges of a Warrior....................78
Connected to the Vine....................79
"Spiritual Growth"....................80
Defeating Distress....................81
Discover Honor....................82
Do Something Amazing....................83
Don't be Discouraged....................84
Be Encouraged....................85
Faint Not....................86
Forgiveness....................87
Goal Setting....................88
"Desert Devotions: Manna in the Desert, Water in the Wilderness"....................89
God Sees Our Troubles....................91
God With Us....................92
Good News....................93
Good Planning....................94
Learning to Live....................95
Leaving a Positive Legacy....................96
Discovering Your Path of Life....................97
Let Your Light Shine....................98
Life is about Choices....................99
Mighty Fortress....................100
"The Love of God"....................101
My Shepherd....................102
Prosperity from the Lord....................103
Seek Good Counsel....................104
Spiritual Weapons....................105
Stay Faithful to God....................106
Take off Your Grave Clothes....................107
True Praise....................108
Take up My Cause....................109
Defend the Weak....................110
A Soldier of Peace....................111
Be a Hero....................112
"No Other God"....................113
Believe in Miracles....................114
Discipline....................115
Do Something Great....................116
Drink the Everlasting Water....................117
Foundation of Faith....................118
Get Out of the Past....................119
God is Good....................120
"Be Authentic"....................122
Golden Rule....................123
Iron Sharpens Iron....................124
I've Got the Victory....................125
Lord Fight My Battle....................126
Get Motivated....................127
Not Condemned....................128
Order My Steps....................129
Fear of the Lord....................130
"Victory in the Desert"....................131
Mercy II....................132
Making the Sacrifice....................133
Soar as Eagles....................134
Take Risks....................135
"Never Forget"....................136
Endure Until the End....................138
Reflections....................139
Bibliography....................144
About the Author....................145

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