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A Gift for All – An Excerpt from the CSB (in)Courage Devotional Bible

The CSB (in)courage Devotional Bible is an invitation for all women to find their stories within the tapestry of the greatest Story ever told—God’s Story of Redemption. The excerpt below is an example of one of the 312 devotions featured within the Bible, crafted by 122 (in)courage community writers.

A Gift for All

ACTS 11:17-18

I love to go exploring. And by exploring, I mean I love to drive around aimlessly in my little black PT Cruiser with the windows down. I enjoy discovering how far side streets go and how they connect to the main intersections. On one of my explorations I drove up the hill to where the houses are more expensive and the views overlooking my town are more breathtaking. I came upon a small grassy area—perfect for a picnic or perhaps even some quiet times.

When I found this little park, I pulled over and parked my car. The place was so serene. Only ten minutes from my house, it became the place I would go to for my quiet times with God. It’s peaceful there. The subtle breeze is noticeable. And I can hear my thoughts— away from the busy streets and honking horns.It’s in this spot that I first came across Acts 11. Peter describes the different animals on the sheet that came from heaven, but then he hears the voice of God telling him to get up, “kill and eat” (Ac 10:13). Peter tells Him, “No!” He reasons with God that he doesn’t eat anything impure or ritually unclean. But God tells Peter not to call anything He has made clean or unclean.

This was a life-changing moment for Peter. The vision of the animals meant more than simply which foods were kosher or not. Salvation is not only for the Jews (whom the Jews considered “clean”) but also for the Gentiles (whom the Jews considered “unclean”). This was huge for Peter to come to terms with. It was such an astounding revelation for Peter that God told him three times to “kill and eat” before the sheet was taken away.

Of the many intimate moments I’ve had with God, what He revealed to me in this passage has ingrained itself in my mind. Jesus died on the cross for my sins and cleansed me so that I could be one with God. That means that even when I sin and make mistakes and feel “unclean,” I am still clean in the eyes of God because Christ’s blood has cleansed me.

God loves us all the same. Nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. And once we’ve committed our lives to Him through faith and repentance, we are made clean and whole. Every person from every nation who has a personal relationship with Jesus receives this profound gift of salvation. There is no segregation in the kingdom of heaven.

Find out more at incouragebible.com.