It's hard to explain where inspiration comes from. A great book, a hard-hitting speech, insight about a scientific breakthrough - they often come from out of nowhere. Or so it seems.

Coming to a new understanding about God is inspirational too, by definition. Prepare your heart to follow the Spirit's leading.

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Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.” Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.”

John 3:1-3

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Depending on where you live, summer break has either just begun or you’re watching the clock, counting the seconds to freedom. Sleeping late, summer jobs, swimming...the choices are endless and the feeling of newfound freedom is liberating! It’s great because summer is an opportunity to “hit the reset button,” to take a break and start over.

That’s what Jesus was trying to tell one of the most religious leaders of the day. Nicodemus was old school — literally! Nicodemus thought the way to God was by saying and doing all the right things, by being schooled in the law and by being related to the principals, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, who encountered God long ago. Jesus said, “Nope. School is dismissed, and it doesn’t matter how important your grandparents are.” When Nicodemus came to Jesus, he knew “the God of Abraham,” but Jesus wanted Nicodemus to “hit the reset button” so he could experience God in a new, fresh, and more personal way.

Steve Cothran

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God, sometimes I get lost trying to see your kingdom because I am more familiar with my way. Help me to reset today and to remember that your Spirit will lead me. Amen.

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Oh! May the God of green hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that your believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope!

Romans 15:13 (The Message)

Steve Cothran

Steve Cothran serves with a terrific staff at First Baptist Church, Greensboro, North Carolina, where he is associate pastor for youth/families. His wife, Nancy, is also a minister. They are blessed with three unique children, Marina, Raleigh, and Robyn.

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