The world around us is a wonderful reminder of God’s beauty and power! God’s creation sings his praises, and every time we look up to the heavens we can see a picture of God’s love. Clouds are a beautiful part of nature and they play a very important role in climate control. Clouds protect us from the sun’s harsh rays and pour down water in times of drought, much like angels have been seen through the bible protecting and blessing people with messages from God himself! Sometimes we notice shapes that form in the clouds, and these 23 clouds are even more amazing because they are in the shape of angels! Now, isn’t that a powerful reminder of God’s majesty?! Scroll through the 23 images below and read through each devotional, praying that God would remind you of his power, love, goodness, and grace today.
The Lord is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion.
His Love Remains
We each handle anger differently. Some people snap back immediately when something sets them off and make their anger part of their default defensive setting. Others may go weeks or even months before they reach their boiling point. Some people express their anger through words while others take—or avoid taking—action to communicate their displeasure.
With God, we’re told he is slow to anger. And even when we disappoint him through our disobedience, his love for us leads to his forgiveness when we confess our sins to him. He doesn’t blow up like a hothead with a short fuse. We don’t have to walk on eggshells out of fear that he will explode with rage.
Greater still, we know that even when God is angry, his love and compassion remain. He will not become so furious with us that he cannot forgive us. His nature is love and through the gift of his Son, Jesus, he’s chosen to always forgive us so that we can be with him forever.
Pray: “Lord, I’m grateful that you are slow to anger and don’t express your anger the way people do. Help me to control my anger and show mercy to those who provoke me.”
The fear of the Lord teaches a man wisdom, and humility comes before honor.
We often think of wisdom as being synonymous with age and maturity. However, many people grow older and become even more foolish. Having more years under your belt doesn’t automatically guarantee that you’ve learned from your mistakes and grown in wisdom.
The people who grow in wisdom are the ones who trust in the Lord. Young people often mature quickly because they’re willing to step out in faith and trust God with their futures. They learn from their mistakes, listen to the wisdom passed down from those ahead of them, and study the truth of God’s Word.
When we look to God as our source for wisdom, and not human-made sources, we can know that we will remain humble and grounded. With God as our source, we will not take credit for what we’ve learned but will point others back to him. He is the wellspring of all wisdom.
Pray: “Lord, I praise you for the many things you continue to teach me. Open my eyes and ears to the wisdom you want to give me today.”
The Lord upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down.
When you sprain your ankle or break your leg, you will likely rely on crutches, a walker, or a cane to help you stand and walk while your injury heals. It’s usually slow going for many weeks and months as you recover and grow stronger. The additional support provided by your crutch or cane enables you to relieve stress on the injury while helping you balance and move forward.
Our faith provides this kind of support for us in our daily walk. Far from being a crutch, however, it gives us the security of a parent holding a child’s hand while walking through the park. Our Father upholds us with a supernatural strength and power that enables us to keep going when we aren’t able to stand on our own. He knows our limitations and catches us when we fall.
We may feel immobilized temporarily, but our spirit is never paralyzed. God lifts us to our feet and makes the ground firm beneath us. We only have to hold his hand and follow his lead.
Pray: “Dear Lord, I’m so grateful that you’re there to catch me when I fall. I lean on you, knowing that you provide me with a firm foundation unlike anything else.”
Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
Summer is a great time for a road trip with an unplanned destination. Along with friends or family, you just get in your car and drive, stopping along the way to check out the back roads and byways that you normally drive by. You discover small town diners and take detours to see sites that you’ve always wondered about, such as a local museum, craft fair, or farmers’ market.
Without a set destination, you’re free to amble and swerve, turn and circle back that you normally wouldn’t. This kind of leisure trip is enjoyable but, without a destination, may leave you uncertain about where you’re going, let alone how to get there.
When we follow God, when our hope in Christ guides us, we can know that no matter how many detours appear we’re sure of our destination. While our path may seem to twist and turn, when we “hold unswervingly to the hope we profess,” God is faithful.
Pray: “God, I’m so grateful that you lead me and reveal your path before me. While I can’t always see around the next bend, you remain my hope and my compass.”
The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.
1 Samuel 16:7
Our True Selves
What would the people around you see if they could look inside your heart today? Would they be surprised by what’s there? Would you be surprised by what’s there?
Most of us cultivate a public mask or face we show to the world. We hide our problems, disguise our disappointments, and try to appear pleasant and professional. When someone asks how we’re doing, we say, “Just fine, thanks. And you?”
While it’s not always appropriate to bare our souls to anyone who asks how we’re doing, we must also realize that when we risk being authentic, we give others permission to do the same. Having integrity means being wholehearted and not fragmented or compartmentalized. We can let others glimpse our true selves the same way that God sees what inside our heart.
Pray: “Lord, let others see Jesus in me. Let me have integrity and display an authentic attitude of love, kindness, and gentleness.”
. . . make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.
One in Spirit
One of the joys of team sports is working together as individuals to achieve a shared goal. Although some players may play key roles and serve as leaders, each and every player becomes significant if the team is to win. In the Body of Christ, this must be our mindset as well. We each have different and unique gifts, skills, and capabilities, but all of us are equally important.
When we allow disagreements and differences to define us, we are not pleasing our Father. He wants us to love one another, forgive one another, and work together toward advancing his kingdom. As we collaborate and cooperate, we discover the joy and satisfaction that comes from participating in a cause so much bigger than ourselves.
Because of what God has done in our lives, we have more reason to celebrate than a team that just won the Super Bowl or the World Series! We should treat one another accordingly.
Pray: “Dear God, thank you for my brothers and sisters in Christ. I pray that we would reflect you with our humility, kindness, and love toward one another.”
. . . let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.
After a long hot summer day, you not only feel tired and depleted, but you feel dirty and sweaty. Maybe this is why we love the beach so much; there’s no better feeling on a sizzling day than hitting the water. Whether it’s the ocean, a lake, a swimming pool, or a backyard pond, we love the sensation of immersing ourselves in the cool clear water.
When you’ve carried around a burden of shame, guilt, and remorse, experiencing the cleansing current of grace can feel even more refreshing. The weariness we feel from holding on to this burden melts and even our body feels lighter.
You don’t have to carry around your sin or burden yourself with a guilty conscience. God is always willing to grant mercy and forgiveness to those who confess and earnestly seek him. He loves us so much and wants us to experience the clean, fresh sensation of a cool shower on a hot day.
Pray: “Lord, I find myself carrying around mistakes I’ve made and sins I’ve committed. Thank you for forgiving and refreshing me with a clean start today.”
Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand.
Hold His Hand
Parents hold their children’s hands, especially when the child is small. Lovers hold hands. Wounded or weary people may hold another’s hand to steady themselves while standing or walking. A teammate might offer his hand to a fallen comrade to assist him to his feet as a sign of respect and good sportsmanship.
Holding someone’s hand is a sign of affection, support, comfort, and confidence. God extends his hand to us this way on a daily basis, reminding us that we never have to walk alone. We are loved, we are strong, and we are protected. His hand holds ours and connects us to him as his beloved child. We have intimate access to the God of the universe—so much so that he holds our hand!
Today, celebrate being God’s child and allow him to hold your hand.
Pray: “Dear Father, for all my grown-up responsibilities and roles, I’m always your child. Thank you for holding my hand and going with me each step, each day.”
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
What we put in our bodies is certainly important—after all, our bodies are the temples of God’s Spirit. Yet, we know that being obedient and pleasing to God requires more than just watching what we eat and drink, or watch and hear. We must also remain diligent about our minds and hearts, the thoughts and feelings that rise up in us and how we respond to them, especially with our actions.
With so much information clamoring for our attention, with so many pop-ups, ads, and seductive sales pitches aimed at us, we’re constantly taking in more than we realize. More images, more ideas, more sensations—and yes, often more temptations—than we realize.
As our world becomes even more digitalized and media-saturated, you must take responsibility for what you see, hear, think, and feel. Don’t let your default setting be one without filters. Seek to please God by all you allow into your mind, heart, and soul.
Pray: “Lord, allow me to remain vigilant about what I allow into my mind. I want to please you in all that I think, do, and say.”
Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
A Sweet Aroma
Scientists tell us that scents carry great power to stimulate our memories. While other sensory data may fade, the smell of honeysuckle, gasoline, or aftershave will usually trigger a memory or association for most people. People often become synonymous with certain scents, usually a favorite cologne or perfume they wear frequently. Cosmetic companies spend millions of dollars to create fragrant combinations that will appeal to people who wear their products.
Perhaps the greatest and sweetest fragrance ever known, however, belongs to Jesus. His scent is not literal as much as figurative. Before his death and resurrection, the temple priests performed sacrifices before God and usually burned incense or some kind of sweet-smelling substance to mask the scent of the sacrificed animal burning. When Christ, as the Lamb of God, gave himself as the final sacrifice for our sins, the smell of his humility, love, and suffering must have been richer than any French perfume and more pungent than the sharpest odor.
We are called to give off this same scent by all that we say and do in the name of the Lord.
Pray: “Lord, allow me to be a sweet aroma, fragrant with the love of Christ, to all those around me today.”
Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.
Who are you when no one is looking? How do you behave when no one around you knows your name or will likely ever see you again? When you travel, do you act differently than when you’re at home? When you’re on vacation, is there a different attitude toward other people than when you’re going through a normal day?
We’re often encouraged by other people and by our society at large to present one face in public and another behind closed doors. However, God desires us to live with purity, integrity, and honesty—the same whether we’re at home, at work, at church, or on vacation. It’s not only our own reputation that’s at stake; it’s the witness we bear to who Christ is in our lives. When others see us changing our behavior according to where we are, they assume that our faith is only a role, a temporary part of our crowded lives.
Today, be a worthy ambassador of Jesus, sharing your authentic faith with everyone around you, no matter the context.
Pray: “God, I confess that sometimes I act differently depending on where I am and who’s around. Help me to represent your Son with truth, grace, and integrity.”
. . . learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.
It’s hard to know who to trust these days. So many people take advantage of the kindness of others. They pretend to be in dire straits or lie about their situation only so others will feel pity and help them.
Nonetheless, we are called to share what we have with those in need around us. We may suspect that the man who appears homeless is really just scamming us, but what if he’s not? We must remain generous and compassionate even when we’re uncertain of the motives or honesty of others.
People who would be willing to lie, steal, or cheat you need to experience the love of Christ just as much as someone who’s injured, homeless, or hungry. The attitude and example you set honors the Lord, and it will have a definite impact on those around you.
Today, don’t be afraid to give openly and generously to the people in need around you. Let them see how much God cares for them, regardless of their motives in seeking your help.
Pray: “Dear God, I want to give my time, attention, and money to those who need help and need to know you. Help me to give with no judgment and no strings attached.”
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
The Family of Believers
Jesus said that people would know that we’re his followers by the love we show to others. This is especially true for how we as believers treat one another. While others might not expect us to show love and kindness to our enemies, they would certainly take notice if we didn’t treat our brothers and sisters in Christ with respect and compassion. While we’re called to be like Christ to all people, if we fail to do it with those who share our beliefs, we’ve truly failed indeed.
Too many people today have mistaken ideas about what it means to follow Jesus. They see believers arguing, condemning, cheating, and hurting others and understandably want no part of such a faith. However, this kind of sinful behavior among Christians grieves God just as much as those watching.
You have the opportunity to determine how those around you define the Christian faith. Your example speaks louder than you realize. Show others what it means to encounter the love of Jesus.
Pray: “Lord, forgive me for when I’ve represented you poorly and inaccurately. Help me to display the peace, love, and grace that are central to the gospel.”
Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself.
Love Your Neighbor
Our neighbors are all around us, whether we live next door to them or even know their names. The young woman serving our coffee, the older gentleman sitting across from us on the bus, the teenager in our youth group at church. Basically, anyone with whom we come in contact is our neighbor. And we’re told to treat them—no, to love them—the same way we love and regard ourselves.
A follower of Jesus asked him, “Lord, who’s my neighbor?” And his answer probably surprised and maybe even disturbed them. Christ said that our neighbors are all around us, the people we encounter throughout our day. It might be easier if we could categorize the nice people next door as the only ones we need to treat with kindness, but that’s not what God tells us.
Today, love every neighbor you encounter, not just those who live close by.
Pray: “Lord, help me to love my neighbors as myself, to serve those around me with a selfless attitude.”
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
He Heals Our Wounds
When we break a bone, the worst kind of injury occurs when the bone shatters into multiple pieces. With a clean break, the bone can be set and the healing process begins right away. However, with more than one break, the bone fragments and jagged pieces can make the recovery process long and painful.
Our hearts often feel the same way. Some losses seem like clean breaks. We know they’re coming, brace ourselves for them, and move on. Others seem to chip away at our love for someone or our hope for the future. Each hurtful word or offensive action leaves us feeling just a little more raw and jagged. Eventually, we’re not sure how to forgive them or heal the damage that has been done.
God knows how to heal even the deepest wounds and most painful assaults on our hearts. Like a master surgeon, he can bind our broken pieces and fill the holes inside us with his love, grace, and mercy. Bones heal, and so will our hearts.
Pray: “Father, please continue to bind and heal the broken areas and wounds inside me, allowing me to be restored to health and wholeness.”
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. . . . look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Put Others First
How would you respond today if someone asked you, “Are you a vain person?” Most of us would hope that we’re not, and even if we knew the truth about ourselves, we would be reluctant to admit it. However, in our age of constant social media, we face more temptations to value ourselves too highly than ever before. From what we post on our status to the selfies we snap to share with others on a daily basis, we’re encouraged to be the star in our very own reality series called life.
However, as Christians, we’re called to put others first. To not be focused on our own appearance, identities, or needs and to instead look for opportunities to serve those around us. In a culture that encourages us to chase after our fifteen minutes of fame, it’s not always easy, but with Christ as our role model, it’s always possible.
Today, let someone else be the star of the show as you support and serve them.
Pray: “Dear God, it’s not easy to quit thinking about myself, but I don’t want to be vain and self-absorbed. Remind me that in order to find my life I must lose it.”
If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.
The Servant of All
We place a lot of stock in numbers, wanting to finish first, wanting to know where we rank compared to our peers. Lists are compiled annually of the wealthiest, the most influential, and the most famous. Athletes are used to being ranked, and most businesses rely on numbers to determine their budgets, their goals, and their margins. Usually, people are only happy when they’re moving up on the list.
However, there’s one list that we should hope to be last on: those people who want to be first in the kingdom of God. Jesus tells us that if you want to demonstrate your passion, commitment, and dedication to the Lord, you must be the servant of all—last on the list. In a dog-eat-dog world where competing means knowing your numerical place, it’s not easy to adopt a mindset of servanthood.
Today, let Jesus be your role model for how to be first by being last.
Pray: “Lord, forgive me for wanting to be first and to compete with those around me. Strengthen my heart to serve humbly, to be first only by being last.”
See, the former things have taken place, and new things I declare; before they spring into being I announce them to you.
Proclaim the Good News
Even though our society is not as formal as it once was, we still follow traditions around major events. For engagements, weddings, and the birth of children, many people still send out announcements to let the world know their happy news. Other formal announcements similarly report something that has already happened, relaying news that others need to know.
Our Father not only proclaims the good news of grace through Christ, but he foretold that news for hundreds of years before Jesus’ birth. Similarly, he often prepares us for what’s about to happen in our lives even if he doesn’t outright announce it to us. He wants us looking ahead, placing our hope in him.
As we are transformed into the likeness of Christ, we have good news to announce, too. We know how to receive forgiveness of sins, enjoy an abundant life, and spend eternity in heaven. Such news is too good to keep to ourselves!
Pray: “Father, thank you for the good news of salvation through your Son, Jesus. I’m grateful for the way you announce good news and keep your promises.”
So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him.
1 Samuel 17:50
Underdogs remain popular heroes for the very reason that they’re outnumbered, underestimated, and overwhelmed. Many people don’t expect them to win, and even if they support them, they can’t imagine how they can overcome the odds and achieve victory. We want to root for the underdog, especially when he’s battling injustice.
One of humanity’s favorite underdogs remains the shepherd boy who went on to become king of Israel. David displayed his fearlessness and reliance on God as he squared off against the mighty Philistine giant Goliath, a bully intent on taunting the Israelites and mocking their God. After killing many of their men, the giant grew even louder and prouder of his brutish accomplishments.
David wasn’t about to let this guy get away with this kind of behavior, not without a fight. So the young warrior drew on his experience as a shepherd defending his sheep from bears and lions. He used weapons familiar to his ability and comfort level. And he dropped Goliath face down in the dust.
We have the same power of faith, courage, and determination at our disposal. We are giant slayers.
Pray: “Dear Lord, thank you for the strength, power, and courage to overcome the giants in my life that try to block me.”
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.
Life’s Curve Balls
You’ve probably heard about or seen an Australian boomerang, an aboriginal hunting weapon that has become a popular souvenir and toy. The L-shaped piece of light wood, when thrown by a practiced expert, travels away from its thrower in an arc before returning to the same spot from which it was thrown.
Often what we give to others is what we end up getting for ourselves. When others intend to hurt us, God protects us and transforms our suffering into strength. The negative impact echoes back to those who wished us harm. While no one likes experiencing pain, disappointment, and betrayal, we can take comfort knowing that our wounds will not destroy us. Our Father uses everything in our lives to equip and strengthen us, transforming anything that others might throw at us.
Even when life throws us a curve ball, we know God’s going to use it to score a victory in our lives.
Pray: “Dear God, I don’t understand some of the events that I’m experiencing right now, but I know that you will use them for my good and for your glory.”
Wow, God is so powerful! These clouds sure do remind me of God’s majesty and his promises. Even though there may be a lot of darkness in this world, I am reminded that God’s love for me is everlasting and that this world is not my home. God, I pray that you and your angels will watch over me and guide my life today!
Have you been encouraged by these devotionals today? Share this post with your friends to uplift them with God’s promises today!