REFLECTION: Luke 24:36-53

Thank You, Lord!!!  I have overflowing joy this morning– our King died for us so we can know heaven, but God didn’t leave Him in the grave, He is alive!  Only God’s wisdom can design a perfect plan that unconditionally blesses the imperfect, us. Share the love of God and the joy of Christ’s sacrifice as you celebrate Resurrection Sunday with your loved ones today.  I can’t stop jumping and shouting– He’s alive!  He’s alive! Hallelujah! Jesus is alive!

Employ purposed living,

Zi Bailey

REFLECTION: Book of John

I’m still soaking up His love– continue to reflect on God’s perfect gift of forgiveness and salvation.  Pour your heart out to God on this day. Oh, how He deeply loves you!

Employ purposed living,

Aziza Bailey

But the whole crowd shouted, “Away with this man! Release Barabbas to us!” — Luke 23:19

Jesus was traded for a murderer named Barabbas– Pilot released the man who had been thrown into prison for violent uprising against the government and for murder.  Jesus Christ, son of God, took his place.  Our Savior was also traded for a thief named Nikki, a pedophile named James, a fornicator named Gina, a drug addict named Rosie and a child abuser named Debbie.  He gave His life to cover a woman named Angie that aborted her first child. He died for Marcus the wife beater, Pastor Chris who’s known for being a lying manipulator, for Rico the three time DUI alcoholic and for sinners like you and me.  Wow, a perfectly innocent Christ voluntarily traded His blessed life for our flaws, so that you and I could have the presence of God on earth and eternal life in heaven.  If that doesn’t bring you to a place of complete appreciation and thanksgiving this morning, I don’t know what will.  Our perfect Lord died for putrid people– He died for us.  What an abundant blessing our God is!

REFLECTION: Luke 23:19-24

Lord, what a sweet privilege— to know that I can ask You for forgiveness and that my sins will be removed from me, as far as the east is from the west and I will be safe from ALL condemnation of my sins.  Lord, right now at this very moment, I ask you to forgive me for _________________________.  I turn away from it all, Daddy and I thank You for the blood of Jesus that makes me pure as snow.  In Jesus’ matchless name I pray, Amen.

Continue to reflect on God’s perfect gift of forgiveness and salvation.  Pour your heart out to God, He is listening!

Employ purposed living,

Aziza Bailey

I have this overactive imagination, so it’s easy for me to picture the scenes as I read the story of Jesus’ crucifixion.  Besides the crucifixion itself, the part of the story that gets me all choked up is John 19:25-27.  Can you imagine loving a friend from the bottom of your heart like she’s your sister and you are at the prison with her mother moments from her death sentence.  Then your friend looks at you with tears flowing down your face, your nose is running with mucus– your chest is heaving because you can’t stop crying from the thought of your friend dying.  You’re a complete mess, your friend’s mother is torn to pieces at the thought of losing her child, then your friend turns and says, “Mom, here is your daughter.  Friend, here is your mom.”  My goodness!  What a beautiful picture of an “adopted family” journeying together in love and caring for one another in the midst of brokenness.  I have a heavy heart just reading this.  I can’t help but be forever grateful to God for Christ.  I am extremely thankful that God adopted us into His kingdom through the great sacrifice of His son as substitution for our sins.  Continue in the last few days of this journey by reflecting on our Heavenly Father’s relentless love for you.  Lord, we thank You for Your amazing grace!

Employ purposed living,

Aziza Bailey


Lord, your amazing heart just captivates us and sweeps us off our feet.  We run out of words when we come into Your presence because we are so in awe of You.  Our desire is to live more like Jesus.  Lord, we model our prayers this morning after Christ.  Equip each and every one of your daughters to finish the work you gave us to do.  We pray this morning for the individuals You’ve sent our way and those You will send to journey with us in life– may we disciple them well and teach them about Your great love.  We pray for the Body of Christ, Father.  Pour out Your glory on all of Your children.  We pray for our enemies, Lord.  Forgive the ones that conspire against us– protect them from their destructive actions and replace their venom with the love and peace of Christ.  Strengthen us to walk boldly in love despite the hatred that permeates this world. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Reflection: John 17 & 18

Lord, we rejoice today– we have joy made possible solely because of the passion of Christ– thank You, Jesus for Your sacrifice!  In trusting You, we have unshakable and assured peace despite the evil in the world.  We know that times will be difficult, but through You, Jesus, the world has been conquered.  In You, we have everlasting joy like a river perpetually overflowing. In the name of Jesus we pray, amen.

Reflection: John 16

Lord, as we reflect on Your sacrifice, we can’t help but be in awe of You.  Everything about Your perfect love for us renders us speechless.  You have such an amazing heart, Lord.  Just thinking of Christ’s servant heart blesses us abundantly– the love He displayed and the grace He extended, especially in the last days leading up to His murder.  Father, teach us how to model after You.  Show us how to give more of ourselves  despite betrayal.  Show us what washing other’s feet look like in the context of our present day relationships.  Change our heart’s Lord so that we can serve like Jesus did in the midst of the pain.  In the matchless name of Jesus we pray, amen.

Reflection: John 13: 1-20

[Love] puts up with anything. [Love] trusts God always.  [Love] always looks for the best.  [Love] never looks back.  [Love] keeps going to the end..  — 1 Corinthians 13:7,8 (The Message)

Throughout this forty day blogging journey, the theme has been focused on the great sacrifice of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ– His radical love and conscious surrender to redeem our imperfect lives.  I am truly enjoying this period of deep worship and reflection and I pray you have been blessed by it as well.

These are two of my favorite scriptures because they are a perfect picture of God’s parental love for us.  My goodness, just pause for a moment to think about what you’ve put our Father through.  Heaven knows He’s put up with my mess time-after-time.  He’s put up with it all, He sees the very best in us though, despite our many flaws.  God never looks back at our mistakes and He will relentlessly love and pursue us until the end.  This scripture spells out His perfect love for His princesses; it makes my heart flutter and brings me to tears.  We really couldn’t ask for a better or greater love than God’s love.  Knowing this, how can we not operate in love with others or trust God with everything.  It’s taken me the full span of my life to get to this point of knowing and trusting God’s love for me.  As much as I recognize how far I’ve come, I know I still have a long journey ahead.  I’m forever grateful that I don’t have to journey alone.  It’s impossible for me to live out His gospel without Him carrying me the full distance.  That’s why I love these two scriptures so much– I’m so thankful that God is with me to the end!

Employ purposed living,

Aziza Bailey

Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  –1 Corinthians 13:6

In 1 Corinthians 13:6, Paul is saying that love doesn’t celebrate being messy or shady– it doesn’t delight at injustices or wickedness, love triumphs when doing what’s right prevails.  It seems like our society is so conditioned to get over on people and to cheat or one-up one another.  We seem to revel at Machiavellianism in our culture and it breaks our Daddy’s heart.  Every time I look up, it seems like I’m reading another story in the newspaper about a pastor, CEO or influential public figures that’s “on top of the world” living deviously.  Meanwhile, as a society, we’ve come to not only rejoice with them, but model after their unsavory ways.  In our time, living large equals being vile and we lust after bling, regardless of what it seems to take to achieve it.  Paul is saying, be bold– walk in love by living a lifestyle that rejoices whenever truth and honorableness wins and not one that gloats over wickedness.

Lord, we cry out asking You to radically change our lives– break our hearts to what break Yours.  Guide our steps each day where we walk more boldly in Your complete gospel.  Purge us from a lifestyle of  delighting in evil and shift us toward one that rejoices when living truth prevails. Have Your way with each and every one of Your daughters, Daddy.  Shape our hearts, minds and thoughts to walk in the destiny that You have uniquely sculpted for us.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Continue to let this devotional prayer and scripture resonate with you throughout the day.

Employ purposed living,

Aziza Bailey

Father, there’s so much development opportunity when it comes to walking in love with others.  Teach us to not be dominated by our natural emotions, teach us to rise above how our society acceptably behaves toward walking in consistent obedience in Your word.  Filter our tongue so that we learn to speak loving truth and not harshly under the premise of keeping it real.  Lord, show us how to love those around us unconditionally.  Our heart’s desire is to learn to love like You.  Strengthen us to walk in love despite the coldness and selfishness that infiltrates this world. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.