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Popcorn People

Daily Devotional for July 26, 2021

Read: Hebrews 3:8-15

Bible version changes do not affect the Key audio or "Today's Key Verse," below.

"This popcorn is so good!" exclaimed Avery as she helped herself to the stove-popped popcorn her Sunday school teacher had made for their class in the church kitchen. "It's so much better than microwave popcorn. I think I could eat the whole pan."

"Me too," said Emma.

"Ow!" exclaimed Charlotte just as their teacher asked the kids to gather around. "I bit into a hard, burnt kernel!"

"Sorry about that, Charlotte,"said Miss Jones. "But let's have a short lesson now before you go back upstairs to meet your parents." She paused as the kids got settled, then asked, "Who knows what made the difference between the hard popcorn kernels like the one Charlotte just got and the tasty ones we all enjoyed?"

"Um...the good kernels popped, and the ones like Charlotte just bit on didn't," said Geoffrey.

"Right," Miss Jones replied. "Do you have any idea why those like Charlotte's didn't pop?"

The kids thought it over. "Not really," said Emma. "Heat makes them pop, but they all got heated, right?"

Miss Jones nodded. "They did, and some of the kernels responded to the heat, but others didn't. And that's what I want to talk to you about today--how people are sort of like popcorn."

The kids looked at their teacher in surprise. "Popcorn people?" asked Avery. "I don't get it."

"The popcorn needs to be changed," Miss Jones said, "and people do too. Popcorn changes as it responds to heat. What do you think changes people?"

"I know," said Charlotte. "Jesus! We're changed when we become Christians, right?"

"That's right," replied Miss Jones. "People who hear the message of God's love and salvation and trust in Jesus are changed. Jesus fills their hearts with His love, and they become new people. But those who hear the gospel and reject its message are like the hard, unpopped kernels that felt the heat but didn't respond." She looked around at the group. "God's love is like the heat of the stove. He loves every single person and offers each one of us the gift of eternal life through His Son, Jesus. It's my prayer that each of you will be like a popped kernel--that you will respond to God's love and put your faith in Jesus." -Jan L. Hansen

Have you responded to the message of the gospel—the good news that Jesus died and rose again so you could be saved and have eternal life? Or do you remain unchanged—hard and unyielding? When you put your faith in Jesus, you become a new person. Don’t harden your heart toward the message of God’s great love for you. Trust in Jesus today!

TODAY'S KEY VERSE: 2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV)
Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (NLT)

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