“So then, none of you can be My disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.” – Luke 14:33

Judson Van DeVenter could not find direction. Born on this day in 1855, Van DeVenter taught art after attending college. Yet, failing to find satisfaction, he wondered if God wanted him to go into full-time evangelistic work. He struggled and prayed about this issue. Finally, he decided that the only way to have peace was to surrender his life anew to Jesus. He documented his decision in a song called “I Surrender All.” He wrote, “All to Jesus, I surrender; all to Him I freely give; I will ever love and trust Him, in His presence daily live.” He humbly bowed at Jesus’ feet, ready to forsake “worldly pleasures.” He asked Jesus to make him “wholly Thine.” He longed to feel the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. He told Him, “Lord, I give myself to Thee; fill me with Thy love and power; let Thy blessing fall on me.” With this surrender, “a new day was ushered into [his] life.” He found direction and peace by obeying Jesus’ command to leave everything else behind. He had surrendered all. Do you have struggles? Do you face decisions about your future? You can find answers by surrendering your life to Jesus. Submit your plans and ambitions to Him. Seek His will, not your own. In absolute surrender, you will find perfect peace. He will guide you and give you fulfillment and satisfaction. Don’t wait! Do it right now!

Read: Luke 14


“These are the singers, heads of fathers’ households of the Levites, who lived in the chambers of the temple free from other duties; for they were engaged in their work day and night.” – 1 Chronicles 9:33

The Bible describes a group of Levites who had one assignment: They were dedicated to singing to the Lord! This assignment never ended. They lived in the temple. Their lives were consumed with music. But not just any music – music that honored and glorified God, praise, and worship. This music helped create the right kind of spiritual atmosphere, helped others focus on God, and encouraged praise. The dedication of these men to this task demonstrated the importance of music specifically related to worship. Worship is important both to God and the spiritual lives of His people. Music can help usher us into His presence and create an atmosphere that draws us closer to Him. Music can help us take our minds and hearts off the activities of our daily lives. It can energize our entire beings and touch our minds as well as our hearts. Like these Levites, we need to be dedicated to worship. We may engage in other activities throughout the day, but nothing must prevent us from worship. Wherever we are, day or night, we can worship God. We can worship Him aloud, but also silently in our hearts. And we can use music to bring us into His presence. Today and throughout this Christmas season, spend time in worship. Wherever you are, praise the Lord! Whenever possible, lift your voice and sing His praises! He is worthy!

Read: 1 Chronicles 9