Devotional Broadcast

2020-10-30

Look up!

This is my blood of the new covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins (mt26:28). Did you know God remembers even when we begin to doubt? God knows that after we come to Him for salvation- while we are trying to live a new life- we will and often do sin again. Because we struggle with our sin and failures, we are tempted to doubt our salvation. The Bible tells us that,”Christ is the mediation of a new covenant”(heb12:24). That this covenant is underwritten with His broken body and poured out blood. Our sign for this covenant is the cross. When the weight of this sinful world is pressing down on us or we are overwhelmed by our own weaknesses and failure in trying to live our lives pleasing to Christ- look up! If you want to be distressed- look within. If you want to be defeated- look back. If you want to be distracted- look around. If you want to be delighted- look up. If you want to be delivered- look to Christ!(unkn). In the midst of life’s troubles and trials where are you looking? My hope is that you are looking to, “Christ, the author and finisher of our faith”(heb12:2). LOOK UP! Have a blessed day.

2020-10-29

No Utopia

Lead a quite and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence (1tim2:2). You and I are not to isolate ourselves from the troubles and trial of this world. We are part of it and therefor we share in its difficulties, problems and hopes. The Old Testaments prophets tell us that we are not to ignore the poor and not to exploit the weak. We know our society is affected by sin and any effort to improve it will always be incomplete and imperfect. There will never be a Utopia on earth as some might think. It has been said, ”Christian love rises above human differences to show itself in absolute locality to others in need. Christian love looks on others through the eyes and with the heart of God. Christian love looks and respects others as persons who are objects of God’s love”(unkn). Sometimes when we see the destruction of the lives of others- we forget God loves this suffering world. And He can change it one life at a time. Are we allowing God to use us to make a difference in someone’s life... one life at a time, because we were once afraid, lost and without hope. Be ready to help our world- one life at a time. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-27

Ambassadors for Christ

We are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us (2cor5:20). We are called to be an ambassador for Christ. But how can we be an ambassador if we don’t know what an ambassador is or does? Webster tell us that an ambassador is, “a person who acts as a representative or promoter of specific activity.” It means that we are not free to set our own policies or develop our own message. We are to carry out the will of those we represent. In a similar way, Christians are called to live under the authority of Christ and the authority of the Word of God. We are called to serve. We are called not to do our will, but the will of God. In our world’s current situation,there are people all around us that are looking for men and women of God who are living under the authority of the Word of God. The unbelieving person will not listen to what we say unless we can honestly back it up in the way we live. H.G.Wells said, “the challenge of living with integrity, is a gentleman who puts more into life than he takes out..” What a viable test. Are we living as an ambassador of Christ? Does the lost around us see Jesus in us? Have a blessed day.

2020-10-26

God’s blessings

Praise be to God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realm with every spiritual blessing in Christ (eph1:3). The Bible tells us, “From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another (jhn1:16). That means no matter of our failures and shortcomings, or how damaged and broken we are- our relationship with God is one of many blessings. When we are connect to Christ, our strength, wisdom, peace, joy, love and hope might run out... but God’s life rushes back in to keep us filled to the brim with one blessing after another. Please do not confuse God’s blessings to that of a genie in a bottle, He is not here to grant us every wish, thats not how God works. The blessing we receive are not because of the things we have or have not done, they are because of Jesus that we are showered with blessings. Our Christian lives are not motivated by a list do’s and don’ts- but by the compassionate outpouring of Gods love and blessings. We don’t deserve them-we deserve the opposite. We cant earn them. We cant bargain or barter for them. And we cant buy them. They are given freely to those who’s life’s connected to Christ. Open your heart today and receive all the blessed God has to give. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-25

Old nature

As God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience (col3:12). In a world filled with caseous, gloom and doom... how can we put to death our old nature? We have no medicine that we can take- only choices to make. We can conquer our old nature one choice at a time, several times in a day, every day of the rest of our lives. Our world is full of discouraging and depressing facts and opinions. Conquering our old nature takes deliberately choosing the things of God. When we are in a pit, our outlook is terribly skewed with negativity. Our vision so congested, that we have a hard time seeing anything positive. As we begin to seek the things of God, we may only be able to think of Jesus and Heaven (and this is a great place to start). But each day we will begin to discover other things, people, and circumstances that positive, beneficial, and constructive. Biblical thinking does take effort, but it can be invigorating and energizing. “Nothing paralyzes our lives like the attitude that things can never change. We need to remind ourselves that God can change things. Outlook determines outcome. If we only see the problems, we will be defeated; but if we see the possibilities in the problem, we can have victory”(W.Wiersbe). Are we following our old nature or God’s new nature. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-24

New creation

If anyone is in Christ, there (he) is a new creation; everything old has passed away (2cor5:17). I have been told that it is alway better and usually more economical, to build a new house than it is to patch up any old one (i am not sure about this only because I’m not a builder). But the same can be said about us (once we come to Christ). Our old nature us deceitful and wicked and it must give way to our new nature. Our God stand ready for this challenge. The Bible tells us, “I will give you a new heart (nature) and put a new spirit within you”(ezk36:26). Are we ready for this challenge or are we content to stay in our old actions (nature)? I think this is the hardest battle we have... letting go of our old self and beginning to live in our new self. It is much more challenging to change our temperament than it is to change our attire. In fact, it is utterly impossible for to change our temperament in our own strength. But I know someone who can-God can! IF anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation.” Our God does not want to just patch us up... no, He wants to enter into our lives and will remake us from the inside out, into the likeness of Christ. This process can take a lifetime but the end result is worth the process. “Active faith gives thanks for a promise even though it is not yet preformed, knowing that God’s contracts are as good as cash”(M.Henry). Have a blessed day.

2020-10-24

God’s initiative

No one can comes to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, andI will raise him at the last day (jhn6:44). It has been said that God always take the initiative. What initiative you may ask? He too the initiative in creating our universe. He took the initiative in creating us in His image.He took the initiative to send His Only Son to us as our Savior. The Bible tells us that we come to love Him because, “He first loved us”(jhn4:19). God took the initiative to draw us to His Son that we may be saved. He took the initiative when He rose Christ from the dead and placed the entire universe under His authority. God took the initiative to send His Holy Spirit to live in the heart of men (those who have received Him in faith). God even took the initiative in building a relationship with us. “The Spirit-filled life is not a special, deluxe edition of Christianity. It is part and parcel of the total plan of God for His people”(A.Z.Tozer). God has taken the initiative in every way but one- your response to His drawing... How will you respond? Have a blessed day.

2020-10-23

God’s initiative

No one can comes to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, andI will raise him at the last day (jhn6:44). It has been said that God always take the initiative. What initiative you may ask? He too the initiative in creating our universe. He took the initiative in creating us in His image.He took the initiative to send His Only Son to us as our Savior. The Bible tells us that we come to love Him because, “He first loved us”(jhn4:19). God took the initiative to draw us to His Son that we may be saved. He took the initiative when He rose Christ from the dead and placed the entire universe under His authority. God took the initiative to send His Holy Spirit to live in the heart of men (those who have received Him in faith). God even took the initiative in building a relationship with us. “The Spirit-filled life is not a special, deluxe edition of Christianity. It is part and parcel of the total plan of God for His people”(A.Z.Tozer). God has taken the initiative in every way but one- your response to His drawing... How will you respond? Have a blessed day.

2020-10-22

God’s word doesn't return empty

(My word) will not return to me empty, but I will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it (isa55:11). During one of my many college classes, I had a professor who would deliberately repeat himself three times. I never understood why until he one day explained it to us. He said that those of us who’d sat in the first couple of rows would understand the first time. Those that sat in the middle of the class would understand the second time. Those that sat in the back of the class would understand the third time-and those in the front of the class would never forget it. Words our words have tremendous strength. But the word of God has tremendous power. God spoke the universe into existence- Jesus cursed the fig tree, and it died. The Bible tells us that, “Both life and death are in the power of the tongue”(pro18:21). In the book of James, he tells us that the tongue is like a rudder of a large ship. Even though it is small, this rudder gives the ship its direction(3:1-11). Just as our words give us direction... The word of God gives us direction and set our course for each day. The more we pour His word into our lives the more we can encourage and win the lost. Anything that we read from the word of God never returns empty... to us,nor to the ones we share it with. Don’t forget you may have to explain it three times or more... Show those around you the love of God over and over. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-20

Target practice

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus,the author and perfecter of our faith (heb12:2). There is a story that has been told of a former Navy officer who kept up his weapon skills to qualify as a deputy sheriff in his home town. After becoming a deputy he was required to equality each year. One year he wore a new set of glasses to the range. His glasses started fogging up, causing him to completely lose focus on his target. What in the world did the deputy do? He remembered what he was taught in the Navy:”When you lose sight of the target, remember your position.” The deputy remembered where he’d last seen the target and pulled the trigger. Hitting the bulls-eye every time! The Bible tells us, “I press towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus”(phil3:14). “If we want to be distressed, look within. If we want to be defeated, look back. If we want to be distracted, look around. If we want to be delighted, look up. If we want to be delivered, look to Christ!”(unkn). Have you seen distracted from the target of Christ- remember remember where you last encountered Him... He will be there. He didn’t move you did... Have a blessed day.

2020-10-19

Heavenly Father

Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples. He said to them,”when you pray say:”Father”(lk11:2). Jesus invites us to come- our entrance into the presence of God is not based on our worthiness, but on the worthiness of Christ. When we come into the presence of God, we come “in Jesus’ name”- we are accepted by God, just as Christ is, because God counts us as His own precious children. The difficulties of our lives do not make us frail... no they only reveal how frail we really are. When the troubles and trials of life get you down, when our family and friends are being crushed with life’s burdens-we should be on our knees praying. Our prayers to our Heavenly Father bring heavenly resources to bear on our situation. There is no place safer or secure as when we are in the Fathers presence. Because of Christ... we can enter into prayer with our Father anytime (day or night). Come to our Father feel His strength- feel His loving protection in the midst of life’s troubles and trials. “At the profoundest depths in life men talk not about God, but with Him”(D.E.Treublood). So,what are we waiting for? Our Father in heaven is waiting to hear from us... Have a blessed day.

2020-10-18

Jewels of faith

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had suffered grief in all kinds of trials(1pt1:6). Have you ever suffered physical, emotional, mental, social, or intellectual limitations? Have you ever use those testing and trials as an excuse to blame them on someone else (doctors,parents, spouse, teachers, or siblings)? Have you ever considered that God may be using those testings and trial to reveal Himself through them? God views of character is more important than our circumstances... so with this divine perspective, we are empowered to welcome life’s troubles and trial- rather then dread them. The Bible tells us that the apostle Paul said,“I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why for Christ’s sake,I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions and in difficulties. For when I am weak, than I am strong”(2cor12:9-10). It has been said that God allows our weaknesses, our limitations, our testings and our troubles as a witness to His power and grace to those around us who are watching. Our hardships are the display case in which God shows off the jewels of our faith. So, are you showing off the jewels of your faith... or displaying the defeat of this world? Have a blessed day.

2020-10-17

Answered prayers

Shall God not avenge His own elect who cry day and night to Him (lk18:7). Have you ever had someone who has shared with you, that they have been praying for a loved one for years- but God has not answered the prayers? I have- in fact I prayed for years that God would heal my daughter of her severe asthma. I prayed for 31 years... God answered my prayers by taking my daughter home to be with Him. My prayers were answered ... but not the way I wanted Him to answer. When we pray to God, I think we forget that God’s ways are not our ways and our timing is not God’s timing. We often pray thinking God is going to answer our prayer the way we want them, not how God wants them. Did God answer my prayers in the healing of my daughter? Yes! She will never again have to struggle to take her next breath... Do I understand why God chose to answer my prayer in this manner? No! But I do know that God heard and answered my prayers. I donnot write this to discourage your from praying for your loved ones out of fear of how God will answer them. I write this to encourage your to never stop praying for your loved ones- and remember God ALWAYS answers our prayers. We may not understand the reasoning, but He will answer. “In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, and strenghtenedst me with strength in my soul”(psm138:3). Have a blessed day.

2020-10-16

Hope... any hope

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away(mt24:35). Have you ever had someone say to you (concerning the gospel)... “It doesn’t matter what you believe, as long as your sincere?” And if we disagree with this idea, we are quickly labeled as intolerant, narrowed-minded or out of step with reality. Our world today, I believe is not much different than the days of Christ. The heart of man is still evil (filled with sin). The gospel of Christ is not some religion we have just made up (I’m just not that smart). Christ tells us, “I AM the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”(jhn14:6). The only way to God is through Christ.. no a religion, not a church and not just because we want to. It has been said that we come to God through Christ or not at all! This world is looking for hope- any hope. The Bible is emphatic that “salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved”(acts4:12). And His name is Jesus. Don’t be afraid to share your faith- in our world fulled with turmoil and uncertainty- others need to hear the hope that we have. Refuse to be intimidated by a world that has put individual perception and opinions of the Word of God. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-14

Deserts

Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes let him take the free gift of the water of life (rev22:17). Have you ever been to the desert? I have not, but I have been told it is a beautiful place to visit...but a not so nice place to live. There is no shade or water, no place to shield your from elements. Have you ever lived in a spiritual desert? You know, the one where you are waiting to hear from God...but you are so overwhelmed, so consumed, so distraught by the troubles and trials of life that you are separated from God, His shade of presence is nowhere to be found, you have no living water of His Word? Moses encouraged the children of Israel to remember how God led them through the desert...”to humble you in order to know what’s in your heart”(deut8:2). Do your feel as if you are in a desert? Of despair? Of depression? Doubt? Disillusionment? It could be God testing you- making you thirsty for Him. The bible reminds us of how to get out of the desert, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, if there be any praise, THINK on these things’(phil4:8). What are you thinking of the troubles or the praise? Have a blessed day.

2020-10-13

God’s instructions

Blessed is the man whom You instruct, O Lord (psm94:12). It is has been said that we become stronger Christians as we meet the troubles and trials of live. Jesus tells us, “Whosoever hears these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock”(mt7:24-25). A wise man (Christians) not only heard Jesus but they follow His instructions. Following Gods mandates develop our inner strength, but it also prepares us for future troubles and trials. Our obedience to God is not always easy, but it is always worthwhile. Our obedience does bring blessings, but these blessings are only the reaping of following Gods instructions. “I am no longer anxious about anything, as I realize the Lord is able to carry out His will, and His will is mine. it makes no matter where He places me, or how. That is rather for Him to consider than for me; for in the easiest positions He must give me grace and in the most difficult, His grace is sufficient”(H.Taylor). Are you following God’s instructions to face your trouble and trials of life? I pray we are. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-12

Believing Prayer

O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant(1kng18:36-38). It has been said that our prayers are the highest use to which speech can be put. Prayer for some may not come easy, while others it may come as easy as breathing. But I think for most of us we are somewhere in between. Often we regard prayer as a honored tradition or polite formality. But prayer(our prayers)- our sincere, believing prayers are so much more. Think of prayers as a conversation with God. You speak to God in prayer and than listen as He speaks to you through His Word. From cover to cover the Bible tells us of people who have turned the tide of history by going to God in prayer. Jesus tells us,“If you abide in Me, and My Word abides in you ,you will ask what you desire, and it will be done for you”(jhn15:7). God is not a gene in a bottle- so don’t go making a list of things you want. But rather understand when our prayers line up with the will of God, then He will answer them. Our prayers is lining our hearts, our will and our thoughts up with God. In short, it is Gods will that we abide in Him. We can change the course of events IF we go to our knees in believing prayer. What will you pray about today? Have a blessed day.

2020-10-11

Christ’s kind of love

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves (rms12:10). The Bible tells us that Jesus said we are to “love each other, as I have loved you”(jhn15:12)- this is not a suggestion, it is His command. Christ’s loves us sacrificially. “Greater love has no other than this, that he lay down his life for his friends”(jhn15:13). Jesus loved us so much that He died for us regardless of our condition or response. In other words- He died for us regardless of whether we accept Him or not. Our idea of love is completely different from Christ’s love. We love those who meets our needs. We love those who make us feel good. We love those who do things for us. We love those who do things for us. In other words our love is based on conditional love (those who fulfill our conditions). But Christ shows us a completely different type of love- a love that puts the needs and well beings of others before ourselves. Have you been loving others conditionally or have you been putting yourself before others? Start today loving others with the example Christ has given us. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-10

You are worthy

The upright shall dwell in your presence (psm140:13). What would you do if you were to meet the Queen of England or the President of the United States? Would you go an buy a new outfit for the event? Would you want to know the proper thing to say and do? One day we will meet someone more important then a queen or president- we will meet the King of kings and the Lord of lords. His glory will be more then a queen or president. And in His presence we will bow in humble worship and praise. “You are worthy, O Lord to receive glory and honor and power”(psm4:11). Are we prepared for the day when we will meet the King of kings face-to-face? None of us know when we will be called home. So, the time is now for us to prepare ourselves. Have you committed your life to Christ? Start now for none of us know of us are promised a tomorrow. “Life can be understood by looking backwards, but it must be lived by looking forward”(unkn). Are we looking forward to the day we will meet our King of kings... i hope so! Have a blessed day.

2020-10-09

God’s messengers

He will give angles charge over you to guide you in all your ways (psm91:11). The Word of God refers to “angle” and “angles” almost 300 times. They are unseen and unrecognizable by our world, yet they never fail their appointed task. They are messengers sent from God to benefit the saints. The invisible activity taking place in the spiritual realm is profound. Much has been written about angles- often not based on the Bible, but on popular legends. But angles are real, and God has commanded them to watch over us. We understand that demon forces are assaulting God’s purpose and God’s people (us) everyday. With all these fierce battles raging how encouraging is it to know that no matter the battle, Satan is a defeated foe (col2:15). Satan may not be banished yet, but we are more than conquerors through Christ (rms8:37). I think only in eternity will we know how many accidents or tragedies God’s angles have prevented or how often they kept Satan’s malicious demons at bay. But in the meantime we can rejoice that they are aiding us throughout our lives. “Angles descending, bring from above, Echoes of mercy, whispers of love”(F.Crosby). Have a blessed day.

2020-10-08

Look up

Pray continually (1thes5:17). If we are keenly aware of our weakness, we are in the perfect position to cry out to the Lord. We may be weak in body, our emotions are spent, our faith may be short and our mind may be wandering- but do not despair. The very troubles we are experiencing may be the very tools God is using to fashion us for better things. Our weakness is a call to prayer. “Is any among you afflicted? let him pray”(jms5:13). Our God does not mock His children with a night that has no ending; and to every man who stands resolute while the darkness lasts, there comes at length the vindication of faith and the breaking of day”(J.S.Stewart). What are our heartfelt prayer needs? Are you at the end of your rope? Then look up... The outlook may be dark, but if we know the secret of the up-look... we shall find our God is able to deliver”(j.C.Stern). The low valley that you may be in may be the prelude to walking in high places. Do not let the things you re facing stop you from crying out to God. Look-up God is waiting. Be encouraged because God- “He give the power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength “(isa40:29). Are you praying or fretting? Look-up! Have a blessed day.

2020-10-06

Do not be afraid

After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision:”Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward”(gen15:1). Jesus said with all authority, “Do not let your hearts be troubled’(jhn14:1). It’s been said that the word of God tells us “not to be afraid” 365 times... thats one for each day of the year. So... God must think its a big deal in our lives if He tells us “not to fear.” Calming ourselves is a choice we have to make each day- even as we face setbacks, or accidents, or health issues, or divorce, or a job change. Jesus tells us to stop letting our imagination run wild, to stop over analyzing every detail over and over again (as we often do). Our peace begins with a choice to not be afraid, followed by the decision to follow God in every situation. “Peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but from the presence of God”(A.MacLaren). Peace is not the subtraction of problems: but rather it is the addition of of power to meet those problems- and that is done as we trust in God. Our peace and trust doesn’t come from outward things. Peace in our lives spring up from the acceptance of troubles and trials in life, not from the weight of bearing them. “Its not the absence of difficulties we long for most, but the tranquility in our hearts”(F.Fenelon). The tranquility and peace we long for will only come as we trust in God. “Don’t be afraid”- begin today to trust in the One who loves your the most. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-04

Deny ourselves

I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds (jhn12:24). God has many more blessing for us-more than we can think to ask for. But these blessings can only come once we fully commit our will, our goals, our ambitions, our desires and thoughts to Him. When we get ourselves get out of Gods way- its amazing what God can do with the troubles and trials of our lives. Have you ever had to train someone in a new job position? Sometime all the trainee can do is observe... other times as much as the trainee tries, they are standing in the way. God wants us to be like the trainee that observes. The apostle Paul tells us, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, butChrist lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me”(gal2:20). God has placed us in the exactly the right crucible to burn up what He sees that needs to be burnt up. Many of us think victory means getting our circumstances put right. This thinking is incorrect. True triumph is within- when we are in the midst of life’s troubles ands trials the Spirit of God can so energize us and strengthen us in our spirit, that we can stand quite in the thick of it all and say, “God is good” and know that we held are by Him.- which is infinitely better than all of our trying to hold things together instead. Jesus calls us to deny ourselves and to take up His cross- to follow Him, which is so much easier than to face the troubles and trials of life alone. Have a blessed day.

2020-10-03

Tree or twig?

He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields it fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers (psm1:2-3). It has been said that God plants us in our faith to grow us into trees of righteousness. He uses the troubles and trials in our lives to make us strong. King David understood the secret of having victory over the troubles and trials of life- it is a conscious choice each day to trust God. David cried out in prayer, “How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and everyday have sorrow in my heart? But I trust in your unfailing love”(psm13:2,5). King David choose to trust God even when he didn’t feel like it. He had to learn to walk by faith, not by his feelings. Our faith in God is our greatest empowering force known and it can conquer our life’s troubles and trials. Our triumph is a way of life, not a isolated incident. Habitual faith means maturing to the point where faith is our first reaction- not our last. King David understood this. A wise person once said,”If there is a great trial in your life today, do not own it as defeat, but continue by faith to claim victory through Him who is able to make you more than a conqueror”(unkn). Are your willing to grow into a tree of righteousness or remain a twig? Will you have victory over adversity or remain defeated? Choose to be strong in faith and choose to trust God! Have a blessed day.

2020-10-02

Jesus wept

Jesus wept(jhn11:35). Have you ever thought,”Jesus just doesn’t care” or God doesn’t understand how I feel” or better yet, “Jesus , if You loved me, why then did You let this happen?” I know, I have after the death of my only-daughter, I just couldn’t believe Jesus would let this happen. But all of these thoughts will crowd our minds- like little seeds sown by Satan. And if we are not careful they will strangle the truth- that God loves us, that our grief is His grief, that our pain is His pain and that our tears are His tears. At the grave of Lazarus the Bible tell us that Jesus wept. The type of weeping that Jesus did was the heart crushing weeping that only come at the loss of a loved one. I know this type of weeping (and maybe you do to)-sometimes even after two and a half year after the passing of my daughter I feel this loss (so I weep). Jesus still wept for His friend Lazarus- even when Jesus knew He was going to raise Lazarus from the grave. So, no matter what life has in store for us- remember that Jesus understands what we are going through and that we are not alone, because He has been there. “If I (we) could hear Jesus praying for me (us) in the other room, I (we) would not fear a million enemies. Yet distance makes not difference. He is praying for me (us)”(R.M.M’Cheyne). Jesus knows our pain and He cares... Have a blessed day.

2020-10-01

The Good Shepherd

I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me (jhn10:14). Are there things about being a Christian that confuse you (I know there are some things that confuse me)? There are some basic things that are clear cut and not confusing at all: we are all sinners, we are separated from God; that God sent His one and only Son to be our Savior and that those who accept Him by faith are born again and accepted by God as His children. But there are other issues that are confusing to me... like whether or not we should marry a certain person, or take a certain job, or if we should have surgery, or maybe whether we should buy or sell our house... the list is endless. Each of life’s struggles involves relying on God. “God has never promised to solve (all of) our problems. He has not promised to answer (all of) questions... he has promised to go with us”(E.Elliott). So, how do we know what to do? It’s simple... We follow our Lord, our Shepherd, who will lead us to “quiet waters” and guides us in the “path of righteousness”(psm23). When we don’t know what to do we follow our Good Shepherd, because He always knows what to do and always wants the best for those whom He loves. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-30

Future home

But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus (phil3:13-14). Has anyone ever asked you,”What is the desire of your heart?” Most will answer this question with wanting things (new home, car, college education etc.). But are you spiritually satisfied? Maybe you want more peace, hope, joy, love, or more fulfillment? For some, we want more- more than just hell insurance, more than just being called a Christian, more than being saved from God’s wrath- more than the bare minimum of what God offers us. If we are Christians, we are told, “The future is bright as the promises of God. If you are saved, this is as bad as it will ever be. Your eternal home awaits. No sin, no suffering, no sickness, no conflicts, no tragedies, no grief, no sorrow, no Devil, no flesh, no evil world system- and the Lamb in the midst of the throne”(A.Judson). But what do we do to help others (the lost)? Our future is secure- but what about those who’s future is uncertainty? Are we reaching them- do we care about them? Do we have the courage to tell them of this future hope? My prayer and hope is that we are... because their future depends on it. Each of us will spend eternity somewhere... but will it be in Heaven with all of its glories or in a terrible place called Hell? Have a blessed day.

2020-09-29

Fresh vision of Christ

When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: Do not be afraid, I am the First and the Last (rev1:17). Have your ever felt like the apostle John, cut off from your family and friends? Maybe you have been in the hospital? Or maybe you are trapped in a body filled with illness and pain? Or maybe you are in a marriage where the love has runout? Like john when our need for Jesus overwhelms us- we need to look up and receive a fresh vision of Jesus. It has been said, “If there is a great trial in your life, do not own it as a defeat, but continue by faith to claim victory through Him who is able to make you more than a conqueror. Let us learn that in the hard places our Father brings us into He is making opportunities for us to exercise such faith in Him that it will bring about blessed results and greatly glorify His name”(unkn). If john had not been exiled on Patmos for his faith- I wonder if we’d have the last book of the Bible. A book that has brought hope to those who have been worn down by the troubles and trials of life. Do you feel as if you are on Patmos? If so- use this time to look up and receive a fresh vision of Jesus. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-27

Trust in the Lord

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight (prov3:5-6). I know this is easy saying and hard living- but we have to trust that our Heavenly Father knows what is best for our lives... trusting in God’s time of silence, while waiting for His answer. This is hard to do especially when... when we pray for healing of a loved one- and they die, or when we pray for our financial burdens to be lifted- and things get worse, or when we pray for reconciliation- and we are served with divorce papers, or when we pray for our jobs-and we get laid off, or when we pray for protection- and we get robbed... not matter what TRUST Him. When the media paints a picture of civil unrest and the very foundation of our way of life is in jeopardy... TRUST Him. The Bible tells us,“Commit your ways to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass”(psm37:5). God does and will answer our prayer, in His timing and according to His will- so we who are called His children can be sure without a shadow of doubt that God loves us and only wants the best for us. “Life can only be understood by looking backward, but it must be lived by looking forward”(unkn). Where is our focus- on the chaos of this world or on the God who answers our prayers? Have a blessed day.

2020-09-25

Life’s garbage

No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him (1cor2:9). I read a book some years ago called Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan (maybe you have read it too). In one part of the book it tells of a man who was sorting through a garbage can. He is carefully taking out bits of tinsel that have been tossed away. Standing behind the is a angle who is offering the man a solid gold crown studded with beautiful jewels. But the man is too focused on the garbage to even notice the angle. I wonder when we get to heaven will we be ashamed of our preoccupation with the garbage in our lives- garbage that has prevented us from turning around and seeing what God has prepared for us. Focusing on God is the key to mastering our focus. Turmoil, jobs, family, people, temptation, and a bunch of other joy-robbers will divert our thinking, but we alone are responsible for what we pay attention to. So the question has to be asked.. are we too busy with the garbage of our lives that we miss out on the blessing that God has prepared for us? I pray not. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-23

Wisdom

If any of you lack wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all (jms1:5). The story is told of a young president of an East Coast company, who instructed his secretary please do not disturb me, because I have an important appointment. One morning the chairman of the board of directors arrived unannounced and said, “I want to see Mr. Jones.” The secretary answered, “I sorry. He cannot be disturbed. He has an important appointment.” The chairman became angry and banged open the door. Upon seeing Mr. Jones on his knees in prayer, the chairman quietly backed out of the office and softly shut the door. The chairman asked the secretary, “Is this usual?” When she answered, “Yes sir. Every morning.” The chairman replied, “No wonder we come to him for advice.” This story offers us a very good example for our prayer life. When we set time aside for prayer are we asking God for wisdom? Wisdom, to get us through the troubles and trials of life. If we ask for wisdom... God is faithful to give us wisdom. When we spend time with God each day, it puts us in a better frame of mind. So the question has to be asked... “Are you spending time with God each day?” Have a blessed day.

2020-09-22

The mystery

The mystery... now has been revealed to the saints (col1:26). When radios were just coming of age, families would gather around the radio. They would turn the dial searching for the unseen transmitter. Most of what was heard was squeaking and squawking of the static, until the station was found and the voices could be heard loud and clear. Some may ask, does God speak to us? Is He trying to reach us? The answer to both questions is yes. But the problem is not with God, it is with us. Just like the radio, we are not attended to Him. Only those who are His children will hear His voice. There is a difference between knowing of God and knowing God. Those that have asked Christ to be their Savior will hear when God speaks. God has revealed Himself to the world through His written Word (the Bible), but most choose not to listen. He has spoken through the prophet and apostles... which they have written for us. The help we need to maneuver life’s troubles and trials is in Gods Word. “The Scripture is both the breeder and feeder of grace”(T.Watson). Just like the squeaking and squawking and static of the radio... have you found the voice of God that you have been looking for? I pray you have. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-21

My soul thirst

My soul thirst for God, for the living God (psm42:2). These words written by King David may seem strange to most of us. My soul thirst for God, the living God. In our age where we are preoccupied with the civil unrest of our world, God almost seem irrelevant. But David had discovered what most of us realize sooner or later (even if we never admit it): the toys and accomplishments of this world will not satisfy the longing of our souls. “You have made us for Yourself, O God and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in You”(St.Augustine). Please don’t let the things of this world crowd out the yearnings of God in your life. Don’t let anything come between you and God. “It is a fact that those whose lives are daily being conformed to the Word and purpose of God will be given the ability to see issues more plainly”(M.Watts). God wants us to know Him in a personal way and that way is Jesus Christ. He loves us and wants the best for us. Are we trusting in Him daily? Have a blessed day.

2020-09-20

Closet Christians

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God (1jhn4:7). We are told that serving the Lord requires prayer and that often means many shedded tears. Which is why I believe we have so many closet Christians. Being a follower of Jesus Christ is not always easy or fun and most do not want to commit so much energy to the cause of Christ. For myself any day that I leave home without spending time with God (quitetime)- I look for the devil to hit me from every angle. Our power to handle life’s troubles and trials does not come from our own abilities- no, it comes from God. We need a fresh renewing each and every day. It is only by the Spirit of God, that has the ability to strengthen our inner man. God gives us ability to show faith, humility, love and patience. We can not, no matter how hard we try to generate these attributes through self-will. “To be in Christ- that makes you fit for Heaven; but for Christ to be in you- that makes you fit for earth! To be in Christ- that changes your destination; but for Christ to be in you-that changes your destiny! The one makes Heaven your home- the other makes the world His workshop”(I.Thomas). Are you allowing God to change you every day- He can and will show how to love and pray for those around you. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-19

Wars and rumors of wars

War will continue until the end (dan9:26). The Bible tells us that we are to work and pray for peace. But God’s word also warns us that the civil conflicts and wars we see going on in our world will always be a part of us until Christ returns and sets up His Kingdom. It will not be until that time when evil is eliminated and peace will reign. So, until that day we will be subject to “war and rumors of wars”(mt24:6). Have you ever wondered why? Why we can’t seem to live in peace- why is there so much ugliness in our world? I think the main reason is that our hearts are selfish and filled with anger, greed and lust. And it will be that way until we have our hearts changed by the love of Christ. Our society has taken God our of everything (schools, government, lives etc.). This is why we need Christ in our hearts more than ever. He is the only one who can change our hardened hearts. As we see all of the destruction of our land and society, know that we can experience peace only through Christ. If your heart is troubled by what is going on in our world today understand two things: the first, we are to rejoice becauseJesus is returning on. And second is that we can know the peace of God, if we ask for it even in the midst of all that is going on in our world. He is faithful to give us peace if we ask for it. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-16

The peace of God

Will You not revive us again, that Your people may rejoice in You?(psm85:6). The Bible tells us,”Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God”(mt5:9). As we see the hatred among the people of our country- I wonder if it will ever cease. Simply telling people to stop fighting and to be considerate to one another... just doesn’t work. Leaders of every country has tried to bring about peace for their countries, but doesn’t last or for the most part never works. I believe the problem with peace (or the lack of it) lies within the human heart; by our very nature we are selfish and greedy. The Bible asks and answers this question:”What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?(jms4:1). As we watch the civil unrest within our country understand that it comes from a heart of discontent (no peace). We are told that, “God’s peace surpasses human comprehension. It is supernaturally conveyed from the person of God to His praying children. It is the stresses of the storms that make us worthy of the anchor (Christ). What could be sweeter than the anchor of heavenly peace in the midst of our storms?(H.Vaughan). The peace we desires comes from one person and that person is Christ. Is your heart troubled? Turn your troubles over the the ultimate peace giver... Have a blessed day.

2020-09-14

God size strength

When I am weak, then I am strong (2cor12:10). Our idea and God’s ideal of strength are completely different. One idea of strength is a person who can lift heavy weights (like in the Olympic) or maybe a person or family who have withstood a great tragedy. And neither of these would be wrong if we are only looking at things from man’s prospective, but we are not... The apostle Paul gives us a example of what it means to be strong, “My strength is made perfect in weakness”(2cor12:9). As Paul learned this lesson, it gave him the ability to say,”When I am weak, then I am strong”. This might sound like a paradox, but it is not. It is only when we admit our own weakness and are willing to get out of the way, will God take over and work. If we can try and do God’s will in our own strength, then we can take all the credit. But that isn’t God’s way. When we let His strength work through us, then He alone will get all the glory. Our Bible’s contain many instructions. And these instruction are God’s directives (His commands). Heading His instructions will fortify our souls. Our obedience builds our faith, and our successes in the faith real build up our spiritual man. Our repeated victories only increase our confidence. So the question has to be asked:”Are you operating in your own strength or the one you have built based on God’s strength? Have a blessed day.

2020-09-13

Perfect will of God

Be transformed... that you may prove what is that... perfect will of God (rms12:2). Many of us want to know what God has in store us. The Bible discloses that God has a plan for each of us, and IF we live in constant fellowship (communion) with Him, He will lead and guide us in the fulfillment of this plan. But God will never disclose His plans for us through fortune-telling, astrologist, soothsayers, and workers of hocus-pouch’s like some may think or have tried. No, Gods perfect will is reserved for those who have fully trusted Jesus Christ for their salvation. God only shares His secrets with those who are redeemed and transformed, those who humbly seek His will for their lives. We cant understand the will of God for our lives unless we first come to the cross, confessing we are sinners and have received Christ as Savior and Lord. The moment we come to Christ, our lives begin to take on new meaning, one no longer living for ourselves, but one lived for Christ. From that instant on God wants to reveal to us His will. Whatever decisions you may be facing or the discouragements you may be encountering today- commit them to Christ and ask Him to lead you... and He will. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-11

Remembering 9/11

God is our refuge and strength, and ever present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear (psm46:1-2). Some of you may not remember because you were not yet born. Most of us that are older can tell you exactly where we were and what we were doing when we watched the news as the horrific events the morning of September 11, 2001. I know I can. We will never forget the planes as they hit the World Trade Center Towers, the Pentagon and the empty field in Pennsylvania. We watched as brave men and women gave their lives to save many others. Have you ever wondered why God allows evil things to happen (not just on a national level, but on personal levels as well)? I wish I knew the answer- but I do not. But, I do know one thing for sure- evil is real and no one is beyond its grasp. Evil is so real that it cost Christ, His life. This year has been difficult for most of us- changing the way we live and interact with others. It has changed our lives, just as the terror attack of 9/11 changed our lives. In our troubled times remember: “God is our refuge and strength.” Not our earnings, not our military, not our government and not our wits- but God alone. As we remember 19 years later and as we face what is happening now- can we say with confidence that God is our refuge and strength? Have a blessed day.

2020-09-09

Great is the Lords

Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised (psm48:1). When I was young and started making a bucket list of things I wanted to do and places I wanted to go: Switzerland was one of those places. I wanted to see the Swiss Alps. I never though that I would actually be able to go there. But I did, and was able to stay for five days. I never realized how big those mountains were until I stood at the base of them in a valley looking up. One of our day trips we took atrain ride to the top of them. When I was in the valley I thought they were beautiful, but when I was able to look at the valley were we were staying I realized just how amazing and vast they were. The same can be said about God’s love for us. It is not until we actually experience it, can we describe its wonders. Behind the love of God lies His omniscience- His ability to know and understand all things. Omniscience is a quality of God’s and His alone. God possesses infinite knowledge and awareness that is uniquely His. At all times- even in our suffering- we can realize that God knows, loves, watches, understands our needs; but it is not until that time do we realize He has a purpose for us. So, remember matter what comes our way- no matter how tempted we are to give into our despair- never ever forget: Gods love for us can never be exhausted, for His love is beyond measure. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-07

In Jesus’ name

We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace (rms5:1-2). Have you ever wondered why we close our prayers with the words’ “in Jesus’ name?” Because it is to remind us, that Jesus has made a way for our prayers to be heard. But it is not a magic phrase that we add to our prayers in order for God to answer them. Remember: God answers our prayers solely based on Christ’s actions not ours. So, does that mean because we belong to Christ, God will answer our prayers the way we expect? No... Those words and our prayers will not be answered like some gene in a bottle or a lucky rabbits foot. God loves us and wants the best for us as His children. Just like parents love and want the best for their children. You know what happens to a children if you give them everything they want? They become spoiled, and ungrateful and they might end up in great danger. Wise parents know how and when to say no- for the greater good of their children. So, in a far greater way God understands what is best for us. When we pray, let us first seek the will of God. Thanking Him for the what Christ has done for us and the might privilege of prayer. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-06

Come boldly

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace (heb4:16). Have you ever thought,”There are so many people and things that are in need of prayer; how can God keep track of them all?” But I think the bigger question is,”How big is God?” If God is limited, if He isn’t all-powerful or all-knowing then we are correct in thinking He could not answer all of our prayers. But our God is NOT limited. He is not like a computer that will run out of memory. Our God is infinite in His knowledge and wisdom. Our God created everything from the largest galaxy to the smallest subatomic particle. And He is able to know every detail of each and every person on this planet. God loves us- and this is reason enough reason for us to pray. He is concerned about us and those that we are concerned about. The Bible tells us, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father... So don’t be afraid; you (we) are worth far more than many sparrows”(mt10:29,31). So, we are to pray knowing that our God hears and answers our prayers. Have a a blessed day.

2020-09-06

Prayer...

He went upon the mountain by Himself to pray (mt14:23). Did you know we were created to live a life of pray? Our problem is that sin is a barrier between God and us. But God has given us a way to breakdown our sin barrier: And His name is Jesus! We are to follow the examples that Jesus has given us. It didn’t matter how busy Jesus was- He spent time in prayer (sometimes hours). How different are we? If we are lucky, we might spend a few moments first thing in the morning (if we remember). Maybe a quick prayer at mealtime and then a few moments before we fall asleep (again if we remember). But this is NOT the example Jesus has set for us. It has been said, “If you are keenly aware of your weakness, you are in the perfect position to cry out to the Lord. You may be weak in body, emotional reserve, faith and mind; but do not despair. The very troubles you are experiencing may be the very tool God uses to fashion you for better things”(H.Vaughan). The most important thing about pray is that we pray. Set aside time- make a date with God. It has also been said,”that when something is important to you- you will make time for it”(unkn). So... how important is pray to you? Are you praying more than just few moments each day? Good, bad, a little or none at all? only you can make this change. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-05

Prayer...

He went upon the mountain by Himself to pray (mt14:23). Did you know we were created to live a life of pray? Our problem is that sin is a barrier between God and us. But God has given us a way to breakdown our sin barrier: And His name is Jesus! We are to follow the examples that Jesus has given us. It didn’t matter how busy Jesus was- He spent time in prayer (sometimes hours). How different are we? If we are lucky, we might spend a few moments first thing in the morning (if we remember). Maybe a quick prayer at mealtime and then a few moments before we fall asleep (again if we remember). But this is NOT the example Jesus has set for us. It has been said, “If you are keenly aware of your weakness, you are in the perfect position to cry out to the Lord. You may be weak in body, emotional reserve, faith and mind; but do not despair. The very troubles you are experiencing may be the very tool God uses to fashion you for better things”(H.Vaughan). The most important thing about pray is that we pray. Set aside time- make a date with God. It has also been said,”that when something is important to you- you will make time for it”(unkn). So... how important is pray to you? Are you praying more than just few moments each day? Good, bad, a little or none at all? only you can make this change. Have a blessed day.

2020-09-04

Our needs

Your Father knows what you need before you ask him (mt6:8). Question: “If God already knows our needs, why bother praying?” Maybe you have wondered the same? Maybe it has kept you from praying-but in reality it should make us pray more. If you are a parent (young or old), do you discourage your kids from coming to you with their needs or concerns? No, you love your kids and you want to hear from them. We want to hear from them even if we already know their needs or concerns, and tell them no... because as their parent we want the best for them. In a like manner our Heavenly Father loves us and wants to hear from us. Our greatest privilege is to come to Him in prayer-because He already knows our need, we can be sure His answers will be what is best for us. “Our hardships do not make us frail; they only reveal how frail we are”(unkn). God knows our needs and wants us to come to Him in prayer. “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings of eagles. They shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint”(isa40:31). Remember: Jesus gave His life “that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in (our) time of need”(heb4:16). Have a blessed day.

2020-09-03

Kneel and see

Far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you (1sam12:23). In our world today, all of us face testings and trials. Just look at what has happened in our Nation in the last six months; and this alone should be reason enough to pray. But sadly I think when we say we are going to pray for someone in need- we say, “I’ll pray for you’- but we don’t or if we do it is half hearted at best. It is very important for us to be true to our word; we should live according to the Golden rule and pray for those in need the way we would want then to pray for us. Consider this story: In a city in Scandinavia there is a famous statue of Christ. One day a visitor stood before the statue- he was very disappointed. He shared his disappointment with the attendant saying, “I can’t see the face of Christ.” The attendant replied, “Sir, if you want to see His face, you must kneel at His feet.” The visitor knelt and saw! If we are to see the face of Christ, we must do like the visitor... kneel. “A Christian should never let adversity get them down, except on his knees’(M.Nicholson). As we face the coming days, remember who we are kneeling to and know He listens to our prayers. Are you praying for others the way you want them to pray for you? Have a blessed day.

2020-09-01

No promises of a tomorrow

My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle (job7:6). In North Carolina there are textile mills (not as many as there use to be). There are giant looms that turn out cloths. These shuttles move with the speed of lighting, hardly visible to the name eye. The Bible tells us that in the time of Job, that our days are “swifter than a weavers shuttle.” Our lives pass so quickly, its almost over before we realize it. The Bible says this is the chronology of eternity. We may live to be seventy, eighty, or maybe even ninety years old(if we are lucky... some never make it to any of those ages),“ but it is but the snap of the fingers compared to eternity. “The golden stream of life rush past us, and we see noting but sand; the angles come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone”(G.Elliot). Place your hand over your heart and fell its beat... It is saying Quick! Quick! Quick! None of us are promised a tomorrow, we only a few brief years best. Let’s make every day count, as we live each day for Christ. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-31

God’s deposit

He... put his spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come (2cor1:21-22). When we trust Christ as our Savior, God gives us His Spirit as a pledge (or earnest guarantee). In the apostle Paul’s time, a deposit or pledge did three things: the first, as a down payment that sealed a bargain. Second, it represented an obligation to buy. And thirdly, it was a sample of what was to come. An example might be, suppose we wanted to buy a car- so we make a deposit. What does our deposit represent? First, it seals our transaction (seals the deal); from now on both us and the seller are committed. Second, it shows that we have committed ourselves to pay the rest of the purchased price. Thirdly, it allows us to take possession of the car now, even though the car still belongs to the bank. So, in a similar way, God’s, Holy Spirit in our heart is His pledge or deposit to us- sealing our commitment to save us- sealing our place in Heaven. Someday, our salvation will be complete- allowing us to enter into Heaven, but in the meantime the Holy Spirit in our heart is our for tasting of what is to come. Are we enjoying the joys that God has given us through His pledge- His Holy Spirit? I pray you are. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-29

When we pray

When you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans (mt6:7). Have you ever taking the time to notice the prayer life of Jesus? He prayed with earnestness. In the garden of Gethsemane our Lord cried out with a loud voice and intense supplication-so much so that “his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground”(lk22:44). But what a sharp contrast you and I have- we use petty petitions and oratorical exercise (using the same words we have used for years, rather than the cries of our inner being). Have you ever noticed how, when we pray that our thoughts roams, when this happens we are insulting God with our lips while our hearts and minds are far from Him. What if we met a famous person? Would we let our thoughts wander? No, not for one moment; we would be intensely interested in everything that would be said. So, in the same way we should pray to our Lord; waiting intensely for every word. How dare we treat the King of kings with less respect. My hope is that our prayers be from our hearts and having focus of our whole being. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-28

Christocray

Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom (psm145:13). It is said the government in God’s Kingdom is unique. It is not a democracy where we have to decide which political party will better run our country. In God’s Kingdom it is a “Christocray” where Christ is the supreme authority. In our society of unredeemed people, democracy is the only fair and equitable system. But no democracy can even be better than the people who make it up. When we are selfishly motivated, our government will be inequitable. When we are dishonest, our government will be the same. When everyone wants his own way, someone is going to get hurt. This is in sharp contrast to God’s Kingdom- in which Christ is King. He is compassionate, fair and just. When He is sovereign in our hearts, our anguish turns to peace. Our hatred is turned to love and our misunderstanding into harmony. As we look to the days ahead and as our country prepare to elect local and national officials- I pray we vote our Christian convictions. Don’t let one political party or the other sway you from those conviction! Remember- that we will always have an imperfect world, this side of Heaven. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-26

The Returning King

This gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations and then the end will come (mt24:14). Parousia, “the coming.” Epiphaneia, “the appearing.” Apokalupsis, “the unveiling.” These three Greek words in the New Testament all refer to the return of Christ. The Bible tells us that only the Father in Heaven knows exactly when Christ will return (and this should keep us from wild speculations) (mt24:36). We are to be on guard standing against false Christs and false prophets- waiting vigilantly for that day. The Bible reminds us that there will be “wars and rumors of wars”(mt24:6) in the last days as well as many unprecedented natural disasters. Many Christians will be persecuted because of their faith. Our year 2020 began with high hopes- but quickly change for many. It has been filled with confusion, quarantine, protests, divisions. All of this should be a stark reminder of the return of Christ. Another sign of Christ’s return will be that our once passionate heart will turn cold toward Christ. This loss of our fervent love will contribute to the breakdown in our morals (what was once right is now wrong, and what was once wrong is now right). As we take a hard look at the many tradigies we are now facing, I wonder if we are ready for the return of Christ? Who knows He could return before you finish reading this... in the twinkling of an eye! Have a blessed day.

2020-08-24

Ten Commandments

And God spoke all these words:”I am the Lord, your God, who brought you our of Egypt, out of the land of slavery”(ex20:1-2). The Ten Commandments has served as the center of our moral universe. Today, it is in great jeopardy. These commandments should serve as our moral compass as Christians, not matter what the world may do or say. The first four commandments remind us that our main priority is to love God; the remaining six guide our love of others. The first, we are to serve God alone (vs3). Anything or anyone that we may cling to we are guilty of idolatry. Next, we are to avoid anything that excludes or obscures the divine nature of God (vs4). We are to honor His name and enter His presence with reverence and respect (vs6). In addition, we are to set aside one day in seven for rest and to worship God (vs8). In the last six commands God reminds us to honor and obey our parents (vs12); not to murder (literally or with our words)(vs13); to be true to our marriage vows (vs14); not to steal from people or God (vs15); not to lie or misrepresent anything (vs16); and lastly, do not covet what belongs to someone else (vs17). After being reminded of these commandments, what does it reveal about our love for God and others? Have a blessed day.

2020-08-22

The time is now...

You do not know what will happen tomorrow (jms4:14). The story is told of Billy Bray, a godly clergymen of another generation, who sat by the bedside of a dying Christian whom had been shy about sharing his faith during his life. The dying man said, “If only I had the power, I’d shout glory to God.” Billy Bray answered, “Its a pity you didn’t shout glory to God, when you had the power.” I wonder how many people who profess to be Christians will have this same sentiment? Not everyone who claims to be a Christian will even care that they didn’t take time to share with others, the mighty things God has done in their lives. God’s Word tells us, “Night is coming when no man can work”(jhn9:4). There will be a time when we will not be able to share with others. In light of all the confusion and hopelessness we face each day- will we take time to share with others the great things God has done? If ever we are to study, if ever we are to pray, if ever we are to win others to Christ, if ever we are to invest our finances for His Kingdom- the time is now! Have a blessed day.

2020-08-21

Crown of life

Blessed is the man who endured trials for.. he will receive the crown of life (jms1:12). To those of us who are Christians, death for us is said to be like a coronation day. Its like a honored prince coming home after many struggles and conquests and campaigns in a foreign land. He is returning home to be crowned and honored for his many deeds. The Bible calls us pilgrims and strangers in a forgiven land. That this world is not our home; our citizenship is in Heaven with Jesus. It tells us that one day our battles will be over and we will enter into our Heavenly home. Our scripture also tells us to those who have been faithful, Christ will give us the crown of life. The apostle Paul tells us, “There is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only, but also to all who loved His appearing”(2tim4:8). . It has been said that on the day of his death, D.L. Moody said while looking to heaven, “Earth is receding , Heaven is opening, this is my coronation day.” NEVER forget: if we are Christians, we are children of the King! Have a blessed day.

2020-08-18

Walk with God as...

My eyes shall be on the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me (psm101:6). It has been said, “Walk with God as Noah did: When the flood came Noah was saved amidst the scorn and rejection of his neighbors. Walk with God as Moses did in the solitude of the desert: When the hour of judgement fell on Egypt, Moses was prepared to lead his people to victory. Walk with God as David did as a shepherd boy: When he was called to rule his people, he was prepared for the task of kingship. Walk with God as Daniel and his three friends did in the Babylonian palace: When the fiery furnace and the lions den came, God was beside them and delivered them”(unkn). As many mature Christians will tell us, God doesn’t always deliver His children from life’s troubles and trials. But He does promise to go with us through them with us.The Bible tells us,”Yea, through I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil for You are with me”(psm23:4). We are never alone. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-15

Christ’s Return

It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord (lam3:26). Our greatest hope as believer in Christ is His promised return. There is a ancient Nicene Creed that reminds us of this,”He shall come again with glory.” As we wait for Christ’s return we understand that our wold remains in constant turmoil, hopelessness, violence and despair. This is confirmed each day as we watch the news. It has been said, “For all us all the world is disorderly and dangerous; ungoverned and apparently ungovernable’(unkn). This becomes more apparent each day. But as Christians we have a promise to look forward to; the return of our Lord Jesus. Our world would only want us to live in fear, only seeing the gloom and doom. But we have something much greater to remember. Someday (maybe sooner than later) our glorious King will return. Someday the heavens will declare, “the kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of the Lord and of His Christ and He shall reign forever and ever”(rev11:15). Christ alone is the One who can help us through the turmoil, troubles and trials we face each day. Remember His promise... He is returning! Have a blessed day

2020-08-13

True Christians

If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me (mt16:24). Have you ever wondered what it means to be a true Christian? First, a Christian has to make a choice (just like Adam and Eve- to obey God or rebel against Him). The Christian not only makes a choice for Christ, but he has to make that choice day by day to continue following Christ each day. Secondly, a Christian is someone who’s life has changed. The moment we receive Christ- His Holy Spirit comes to live in our hearts. The Holy Spirit changes our thoughts, feelings, behavior, goals and relationships. Thirdly, a Christian is one who has accepted a challenge. The challenge that Christ has called us to deny self- we are to deny our own selfish ambitions, our own selfish sinful pleasures- and take up our cross and follow Christ. “To be in Christ- that is redemption; but for Christ to be in you- that is sanctification! To be in Christ- that makes you fit for Heaven; but for Christ to be in you- that makes us fit for earth! To be in Christ- that changes your destination; but for Christ to be in you- that changes your destiny! The one makes Heaven your home- the other makes this world His workshop”(I.Thomas). Have a blessed day.

2020-08-11

God is spirit

God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth (jhn4:24). I am told that there is a “Short Catechism” a summary of basic Christian beliefs in the form of questions and answers. One of the questions asked is “What is God?” The answer being “God is a spirit- infinite, eternal and unchangeable.” Those three words describe whom God is beautifully. God is infinite- not body bound. God is eternal- He has no beginning and no ending. God is unchangeable- never changing, never inconsistent, never unreliable. The Bible tells us,”there is no variation or shadow of turning”(jms1:17). He is forever self-existent. In our lives there is always change- people, fashion , jobs, conditions and circumstances. But God never changes. The Bible also tells us, He is the same yesterday and today and forever (heb13:8). God’s love and holiness never change. His purpose and glory never changes. In a world of consistent change can you think of any reason not to trust God? Neither can I. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-10

The call of Christ

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me (mt11:29). Missionary Jim Elliot along with four fellow missionaries were killed by the Quechua Indians (Aucus). Jim and his fellow missionaries knew the risk involved, but still followed the calling Christ had placed before them. Before he was killed, Jim wrote, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” Jim and fellow missionaries were killed on January 8,1956. Christ calls each of us to discipleship. He may never call us to a foreign country, but He does call us where we are. He calls us to turn away from our selfish desires and to seek Him above all else. He wants us to take His yoke and learn from Him. So, are we exchanging one set of burden for another (the burden of sin for the burden of obedience)? No. There is no burden in following Christ. We become the bearers of joy. No matter what we face, because we re yoked to Christ we do not face it alone. “Life need not be easy to be joyful... Joy is not the absence of troubles, but the presence of Christ”(W.VanderHoven). To whom are you yokes? Christ or the world? Have a blessed day.

2020-08-09

Let your light shine

Let your light so shine before men, that they may... glorify your Father in heaven (mt5:16). Christ regarded His followers as a select group who belonged to a different world. Just like many of todays religious people, Christ faced the same wordiness and unspiritual people who publicly flaunted their religion, but in private they were dominated by pride, self-ambition, greed and many falsehoods. Christ instructed His followers that they could not make their light shine by sinking to the worlds level. In other words, our influence on society depends on our likeness to Christ. We cannot elevate others higher than we ourselves have gone. The early followers of Christ, out-thought, out-lived, and out-loved their neighbors. It is because of Christ’s example that they were able to attract countless thousands to the Christian faith. “It is a fact that those whose lives are daily being conformed to the Word and purposes of God will be given the ability to see issues more plainly”(M.Watts). When the lost look at us- whom do they see? Christ or the world? Is your light shining that the world sees it or has the world caused it to fade away? Have a blessed day.

2020-08-08

Solid rock or sand

Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them.. is like a a man building a house, who dug and laid the foundation on the rock (lk6:47-48). Jesus is talking of two men who were building houses. The first man built his house on a solid rock. The second man built his house on sand. Each men faced the same raging storm-but only the house that was built on rock withstood the storm. If you live in Florida like I do- you know a thing or two about hurricanes, you know when to board up your home and know when to to head to higher ground. Life can be like that for us- some of the storms we face we know how to handle, while others its all we can do to make it to the next minute, hour, or day. Jesus is telling us to make Him our solid foundation in our lives. Because we never know when a storm may be raging around or in us. When Christ is our solid foundation our storms will rage, blow and rain on us, but we can find comfort when we know Christ is holding us- we do need to fear our storms. “The outlook may be dark, but if we know the secret of the up-look... we shall find our God is able to deliver”(J.C.Stern). So, what are you focused on- the the storm that is raging or Christ you solid foundation? My prayer is that it is Christ your foundation. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-05

Grace and mercy!

The Lord your God is gracious and merciful and will not turn His face from you if you return to Him (2chrn30:9). The Bible tells us that Manasseh king of Judah may have been the most wicked of all the kings of Israel. He was an idolater who turned against God. He worshipped every kind of pagan deities. He was immoral in every sense. He practiced every conceivable evil, he devoted himself to sorcery and witchcraft. The Bible even tells us that he sacrificed his sons to a pagan god. But Gods judgement fell: the Assyrian’s captured Jerusalem , and king Manasseh was bond and taken to Babylon. While held prisoner, the king had time to reflect on his actions. And he begun to pray to God. This wicked man who deserved Hell- cried out to God fo forgiveness... and God answered him. The Bible teaches us that God is a God of mercy and grace. Remember: Mercy and grace will always be bestowed when we need it most. Don’t waste energy worrying about the future. We are in good hands- very good hands. God knows our needs. It is His grace and mercy that has gotten you this far and His same grace and mercy will lead you home. So not matter how far we may have wandered... know that He is there when we are ready to come home. Have a blessed day.

2020-08-03

Giants

David said to the Philistine’s, You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord (1sam17:45). Young David faced off the great warrior giant Goliath of the Philistine nation. Who was a bitter enemy of the nation of God. We are told that Goliath stood nine feet tall and wore heavy armor. His spear was the size of a tree trunk. Goliath challenged the army of Israel. No man was brave enough to meet his challenges- so David volunteered. We are told David was out-armored, out-sized and out-experienced. Davids only weapon was a sling-shot and a few stones. But David’s greatest weapon was his deep dependence on God. It took only one stone to bring the giant down, giving God the victory (in fact God didn’t need David or the stone, but He used them both). Each of us are facing giants- illnesses, family issues, work issues, loss of loved ones, social injustice. But no matter what we are facing God wants to help. So put on your whole armor of God (eph6:10-18). “Stop using your tongue as a shovel to bury yourself and start using it as a sword against the enemy. Speak life not death”(H.Vaughan). Have a blessed day.

2020-07-30

Supply all your needs

My God shall supply all your needs (phil4:19). One lesson that Jesus has taught us, is to have faith and confidence that our God answers our true petitions. Does this mean God gives us a blank check when we pray? Or does it mean He promises to give us anything or everything we want if we just keep asking? NO! God loves us too much to answer our prayers that foolish or might harm us. The Bible tells us this promise:”If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you”(jhn15:7). Again, God is not our Gene in bottle, willing to grant us anything we desire. But the closer we get to Him- the more we abide in Him and the more His words abides in us- the more we will desire what He desires and the more our prayers will reflect His will. Do you feel as if your prayers have gone unanswered? Please don’t... God does answer our pray in one of three ways : Yes, No, or Wait. The Bible give us another promise: “No good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless”(psm84:11). Trust these promises with all your soul and know that God does hear and will answer your prayers. Have a blessed day.

2020-07-27

Giving

Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, press down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you (lk6:38). Giving doesn’t come easy for most of us, or at least the type of giving the Bible urges us to have. We will give if we think the cause is worthy or if we can afford it. My husband pastored a small church for 13 year. But before we joined the little church, we learned that six little old ladies were paying the bills to keep the doors open using their social security checks each month. Which this means that they were using most of their income to do the work of the Lord. To me...that is what true giving is about. None of these ladies were rich by any means! But I’m sure in the sight of God they are rich beyond measure. They taught me a great lesson, as we watched God worked mightily in this little church’s and in the lives of these ladies,some have gone on to be with the Lord and some are still do the work of the Lord. Oh.. the lesson I learned, you can never out give God. I’ve learned that the Body of Christ can be one of the greatest encouragement, even more so when you see giving the way we are suppose to. And showing support for the ministries that God has placed us in. So, the questions have to be asked... How are you supporting your local church? And are you blessing others with your giving? Have a blessed day.

2020-07-22

Fear...

Do not be afraid (mt28:10). Right now we are living in a time in which our world is living in great fear. Fear that has been created to cripple us. We live in fear of a virus in which most will have little or no symptoms, but for some it can quite dangerous. Either way, we are living in fear- fear so great that our world is shaken by appreciation and anxiety. Our emotions are all over the place. So, what is the answer to this stifling fear? After Jesus was put to death, His disciples huddled in fear behind closed doors. But they found themselves in the presence of their living Lord. The Bible tells us that the first words from Jesus were: “Peace to you”(lk24:36). The answer to all of our fears can be found in our personal relationship with Christ. The answer to collective fear is a corporate faith in our living God. The answer to national and international tensions and fear is for the world to know him Who is alive forevermore. We do not worship a dead Christ. We worship a living Christ. So, why then, should we live in fear? “Believe God’s word and power more than you believe in your own feelings (fear/anxiety) and experience. Your Rock is Christ. It isn’t the Rock that ebbs and flows... Its your sea! (S.Rutherford). Have a blessed day.

2020-07-20

Refining furnace

When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold (job23:11). When we are faced with affliction, it can be a means of refining and purification. Just like ore that must pass through the refiner furnace before it can yield its gold. Alike, our lives must sometimes pass through God’s refining furnace of testing and trials before we can bring forth something beautiful and useful for Him. Many of us may never face great tragedies or lose. Most of us will face daily life’s trouble and challenges. “We are always in the forge or on the anvil; by trials God is shaping us for higher things”(H.W.Beecher). Our testings and trials can bring us to seasons of silence, darkness, depression, failure, loss, weakness, sorrow or illness. But understand our testings are ment to make us stronger in our faith and to develop our confidence in God’s watchful care over us. Our trial may be used to drive us back to the right path when we have wandered. The Bible tells us that King David said, “Before I was afflicted I went astray but now I keep Your word”(psm119:67). So, whatever affliction we may be facing, take it in faith as a blessing not a curse. Have a blessed day.

2020-07-13

My long absence

I know it has been several weeks since I have last posted anything on my morning encouragement. First let me begin by apologizing for my absence. Some of you maybe aware most of you will not. But my long absence is due to the fact on June 27th, I tested positive for COVID-19. And on June 29th I was admitted to the hospital with COVID-pneumonia in both lungs. I was in ICU for five days and in the COVID unit for another five days. I was finally able to come home on July 9th. My recovery will take several weeks due to the pneumonia. I will ask that you join me in prayer as I am recovering from this minor setback. I tested positive for COVID at my time of release from the hospital. So I will have to have 2 negative test results before I can return to work in a couple of weeks. Thank you so much for your understanding and I will ask that this matter please not be posted on any plateforms. Thank you for your patience and understanding. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact.

2020-06-22

Deaths sting

Our Savior, Jesus Christ... has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel (2tim1:10). You know when we go to the beach and dig holes in the sand, how quickly the waves fill in the holes?Likewise, those who know Christ as Savior and Lord, when we pass our physical death is overwhelmed by the grace and love of God. Death is a incident of our life, not an end. It is a transition for the Christian, not a terminus. In death, we are finally freed from all that burden us here. The Bible tells us, “we lay aside the outward “tent” of our body, and we inherit an building from God, a house not made with hands eternal in heaven’”(2cor5:1). As we live our lives on earth- we will experience our share of pain, problems, tests and trials. And sometimes we can be so overwhelmed that life seems to have no meaning. But the resurrection of Christ changed everything... It gives us purpose and meaning to our life, and our life’s greatest joy comes from discoing His will and fulfilling it. Christ gives us hope beyond the grave. Have a blessed day.

2020-06-19

Tithings

The generous soul will be made rich (prov11:25). The Bible tells us that blessings follow those who give liberally. “The generous soul will be made rich, and he who waters will also be water himself”(prov11:25). For some Christians it seems a bit scary to give. Especially since most of us live paycheck to paycheck. Our money is always tied up in our living expenses. The Word of God doesn’t suggest we give at least one tenth of our income, it requires it (pro3:9-10). When my husband and I were young Christians we owed more than we made. But in faith we begun to tithe. At first we could not tithe our full ten percent. But we quickly begun to see God bless us on our small amounts (I’m not talking wealth and prosperity gospel). I’m talking God did bless in ways that we never thought would happen. We never missed a bill- and we were able to give more each month. The thing I learned the most is- we CANNOT out give God. The hardest part of giving is trusting when we give. So, my advise is to give. And to trust God when He says to test Him in giving (mal3:10). Remember: God loves a cheerful giver”(2cor9:7). Are you a giver? Have a blessed day.

2020-06-18

The Good Shepherd

The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep (jhn10:11). The Bible tells us that Jesus called Himself the shepherd. He said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd who own the sheep... I know My sheep and My sheep know me”(jhn10:11-12). There are four things Jesus is letting us know about Himself. The first is that He is the Good Shepherd. He owns the sheep (us) and they (we) belong to Him. The second thing is He guards the sheep (us), and He never abandons them (us) when danger approaches. Thirdly, He knows the sheep (which one are truly His and which ones are not). He calls them (us) by name and they (we) follow Him. And lastly, He lays down His life for the sheep, and their salvation is His primary concern. The Bible also confirms us, “We are His people and the sheep of His pasture”(psm100:3). “Contentment with the divine will is the best remedy we can apply to misfortune” (W.Temple). Because we belong to Christ (He is ours and we are His), we can be secure and at rest even in the troubles and trials of life. Have a blessed day.

2020-06-17

Mental vs. Spiritual

Let the peace of God rule in your hearts (col3:15). Science has proved what the Bible has been telling us: There is a direct relationship between our mental and physical and spiritual health. The Bible puts it this way: “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones”(prov17:22). There is a host of problems (fear, bitterness, guild, jealousy) that are brought on by sin. This poison will sicken our mind and body. But when Christ enters our lives He removes the guilt we have and takes away our fear. Christ shows us how to love others and gives us a purpose to live for. He gives us joy and peace that can neutralize sins poisonous grip on our lives. Our spiritual problems do not disappear overnight, some may take a life time, but if we allow Christ to work in those areas he will remove them. Does this mean everything will be rainbows and unicorns? Sadly no, but it does mean that God will be with us. “God has not promised to solve our problems. He has not promised to answer our questions... but He has promised to go with us”(E.Elliot). Have a blessed day.

2020-06-15

Does God care?

God is not the author of confusion but of peace (1cor14:33). When faced with the troubles and trial of life on a personal level and a national level, have you ever asked, “Does God really care about what is going on?”(I know I have). The Bible tells us, “Refuge fail me; no man cares for my soul”(psm142:4). So we understand men may not care for us but the Bible tells us that God cares for us. “He cares for you”(1pt5:7). So, even if the wold passes away God’s Word will not change. His word is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. How do we know God cares for us? Because He sent His only begotten Son to us. Yes, this life can be overwhelming at times. It has been said, “the things you are worried about today will not matter in 5 year (in fact you may not even remember them in a few months). Few things will matter in 20 years. Very few things will matter in 50 years. And nothing that we worry about on a personal level will not matter in 100 years. So, if the things we are fretting about today, right now are inconsequential later- DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF! (R.Carlson). As we face today and the days to come know that our Mighty God cares for all that we are facing on a personal level and national level. “He cares for you.” Have a blessed day.

2020-06-13

Pray with ceasing

We... do not cease to pray for you (col1:9). There is a story that is given of a women who had pleaded with God for her husband conversion, but instead of his conversation her husband became more hardened than ever before. The women was advised to continue to pray. And in her eleventh year of praying for him, her husband was gloriously and miraculously converted. It does not always happen this way... maybe you feel as if your prayers have gone unheard (I know I have). But the Bible tells us to,”Pray without ceasing”(1thes5:17). This should be the motto of every Christian. Never stop praying no matter how dark, or disheartening things may seem. It is not our responsibility to tell God when to act or even how to act. It is our responsibility to simply, “Pray without ceasing.” “If we are keenly aware of our weaknesses, we are in the perfect position to cry out to God. We may be weak in body, our emotional reserve, faith and mind; but do not despair. The very troubles you are experiencing maybe the very tools God uses to fashion us for better things’(unknown). Have a blessed day.

2020-06-11

Sluggard

The sluggard’s craving will be the death of him, because he refuses to work (prov21:25). Webster tells us that the word “sloth” means reluctance to work or make an effort; laziness or idleness. In the Christian context the word “sloth” carries with it not only the idea of laziness in spiritual things, but also apathy and inactivity in our everyday lives. A slothful person is like a piece of driftwood floating downstream. It takes no effort, no strength to be lost. A drifting boat always goes downstream- never up. Likewise, a drifting slothful soul (person) is moving toward eternity without God. The sin of doing nothing (the sin of omission) is just as dangerous as any sin of action (the sin of commission). We do not need to do anything to be lost- just do nothing. Sadly, many of Christians are slothful when it comes to reading our Bibles, praying, helping others and giving to those in need. A stubborn, slothful person is a great hindrance to the calling to Christ’s forgiveness and His transforming power. Don’t give into laziness in your Christianity or in everyday life. Have a blessed day.

2020-06-10

Envy...

A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones (prov14:30). There is a story that is told, in Ancient Greece, the citizens of a certain city put up a statue of a celebrated champion for all to see. But his rival was so envious that he vowed to destroy the statue. So every evening in the cover of darkness he would chisel away at the base of the statue in an effort to disrupt its foundation hoping it would fall. The statue did finally fall- falling on the envious rival. The jealous athlete died a victim of his own envy. Our envy does a lot of things- it dethrones God- it destroys our spiritual health- it takes away our joy, happiness and peace. No wonder God ranks envy on the same level as sexual immorality, idolatry, witchcraft, and drunkenness (gal5:19-21). How do we get rid of it? Just like our sin of anger- we must first recognize we have it. Then we are to confess it to God, and then we are to renounce it. Lastly, understand that we can not master it on our own. And like anger, we must open our hearts and allow it to be transformed by the power of Christ. Have a blessed day.

2020-06-09

Anger

A fool gives full vent to anger (prov29:11). Each one of us are capable of reacting in anger. My infant granddaughter is capable of showing anger when she doesn’t eat what she wants and she is only six months old. I have even said some things mean things to my children when they were growing up. The anger of my husband or children would disrupt our home and family. Our homes can be destroyed by the swirling torment of anger. our business relationships can be shattered by fits of those who have tempers. Our friendships can be broken by either party’s anger. Our anger is a sin (pure and simple) and this anger can lead us to do things we wouldn’t think of doing... murder, assault and conflicts. Our anger can bring out the animal nature in us. It can hinder our Christian testimony and can cause us to lose the joy of living. The peace that we long for can not mutually exist the the sin of anger. Our first step in having victory over our anger is to get rid of it. The second step is confessing our anger. The third step is to yield ourselves to God. The Holy Spirit can tame our tongues and soften our harden hearts when we surrender it to Christ. It has been said that, He who calmed the turbulent Sea of Galilee can calm the tempestuous sea of our angry hearts with His love. Have a blessed day.

2020-06-08

Conversations

Colossians 4:6, Proverbs 11:17, Proverbs 15:1-4 There are a lot of people who have offended you, and they don’t even know they have. On the other hand, you have offended other people and they simply have yet to tell you. I’ve had several friends over the years that are unsure of how to talk to others or me about racial issues existing in our country for the fear they may sound offensive. However, I believe the best thing we can do in conversations like these is to ask genuine questions in love. This gives us the opportunity to understand other people’s perspective and narrows the gap for offense to govern your conversations. I love how Paul talked about this in Colossians 4:6 You will not be able to control all of the people who will offend you in your lifetime, but you can be intentional with your part in the conversations you have with other people. Make a decision today to bring out the best in other people. Point out the greatness in a friend. Tell someone what they are good at; they may have forgotten or not realized it yet. Go through their social media account and like a few of their posts. Write a kind comment on it. It’s not to be fake. It’s to be intentional. If we’re honest, it’s not difficult to criticize anything or anybody. It almost comes naturally to us. But what if we all chose to be better than that? For us to bring out the best in others in our conversations, we have to actually be looking for the best. Have a blessed day.

2020-06-06

Pride...

The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished (prov16:5). Todays verse is hard to read because it is very specific about what He detests. The proud of heart that is talked about is the pride of the heart. The type of pride we are talking about is the haughty, undue self-esteem out of proportion to our actual worth. It is the egoism that is repulsive to both man and God. God does not hate our healthy self-respect or our ligament sense of personal dignity pride. But pride does come in many forms. Our Spiritual pride trusts in our own virtue instead of grace of God. Our Intellectual pride give more weight to self-confidence rather than God-confidence. Our pride of material things puts things above God. All forms of pride emanate from the haughty heart, and pride is the sin God hates the most. So, what can we do about it? First, is to confess our pride. The second, is to humble ourselves in the sight of God. The Bible tells us that Christ, who, “humbled himself and became obedient to death-even to the cross!”(phil2:8). If is is important enough for Christ- how much more should it be to us? Have a blessed day.

2020-06-05

If God is for us....

If God is for us ,who can be against us?(rms8:31). It has been said that, “We have become a nation of cowards.” At first I disagreed, but then I had to admit we have become a people and nation who are reluctant to follow a course if it is difficult or isn’t popular. We see protesting saying only certain things matter, and if we go against what is popular we are signaled out as wrong. If the odds are in our favor we will take a stand; but if there is any risk involved we will play it safe, doing and saying nothing. The early Christians were completely different. From one end of the Roman Empire to the other they boldly proclaiming the gospel. They did this even when faced with hostility, persecution, scorn, and even death- they were not afraid. The Bible tells us, “For GOD has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind”(2tim1:7). We may never face the same dangers as the early Christians, so don’t take the easy way out and give into what may be popular- don’t give into the pressures and fears of others. Remember: “If GOD is for us, who can be against us?” Have a blessed day.

2020-06-04

Troubles and trials

Through God we will do valiantly (psm108:13). We are told that there are two ways of getting out of the troubles and trial of life. The first is to simply try to get rid of the trial and be thankful it is over (you know grit your teeth and get through it quickly). The second is to recognize the trial as a challenge from God to claim a larger blessing than we have ever had. Sometimes God will choose to remove our trials and I don’t think it is wrong to ask. But this is usually not the case. When this removal does not happen, we need to accept the trial and ask God to teach us from it. It has been said that our troubles and trials are not the real problem, it is the was we see our trial that is (unknown). God cares more about our character than our circumstances. When we realize this, we are in the position to welcome the troubles and trials of life. Remember: All of life consist of seasons and these seasons are never permanent (even if they seem so). So, in your times of trouble when you feel you world is crashing on you, in time you will emerge. “Time does not heal all wounds, but it does take time for wounds to heal”(unknown). Have a blessed day.

2020-06-03

Wages of sin

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (rms6:23). In light of the recent events in our nation, there is a story that is told of a minister speaking strongly against sin. After the service one of the church members commented, “We don’t want you to talk so plainly about sin, because if our children hear you mentioning it, they are more easily become sinners. Call it a mistake, if you will, but do not speak so bluntly about sin. ”The minister responding to this statement went to his medicine cabinet and brought back a bottle of strychnine marked “Poison.” He replayed, “I understand what you want me to do. You want me to change the label. Suppose I took this ‘Poison’ label off this bottle and replaced it with one like ‘Peppermint Candy.’ Can you now see the problem? The milder the label, the more dangerous the poison presence”(yes there are some hole in the story but please DONOT miss it’s point). It is time for our nation to put the label “poison” back on sin. We need to address “sin as sin”- and stop watering in down all in the name of political correctness. The Bible is very. Specific about this- “for the wages of sin is death.” Have a blessed day.

2020-06-02

The power of a praying Nation

Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving (col4:2). Our nation is facing troubling times- most will agree. Some may say we are living in a nation filled with fear. The Bible tells us, “In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, and strengthenedst me with strength my soul”(psm138:3). If we understand, hardships do not make us frail, they only reveal how frail we really are... this can be applied on a national level, not just on a personal level. When we become aware of our weaknesses, we are in the perfect place to cry out to our Lord. Our prayers are set to bring about heavenly resources to bear on our situation. So, when we pray as a nation, we are setting ourselves up to bring about heavenly results... we are bringing the power of our Almighty God to our hurting nation. The forces of darkness can not stand when the power of God is present. Who knows what will happen if millions of believers around our nation will avail themselves to the greatest privilege this side of Heaven- the privilege of prayer. Will you be one of them? Have a blessed day.

2020-06-01

The life that Christ gives

The Son gives life to whom He will (jhn5:21). We understand when we come to Christ, His Holy Spirit brings the life of God to us- and we begin to live. We begin to “live,” we have a new spring in our step (because our burdens were lifted). We have a joy to our soul (because we have a hope). And we have a peace in our heart (because of the promise of heaven). This world is full of discouragement, depressing facts and opinions. All the conformation we need is found in the morning or evening news. When we give our lives to Christ, our life takes on a whole new direction. In spite of the things that are going on (the uncertainty that others try to instill) we have the assurance that God and only God is directing our steps. The naysayers of this world would have us live in fear. But this is not what Christ gives us, “The thief comes only to steal (“our hope, joy, and promises”) and kill and destroy; I have come that they (“us”) may have life and have it more abundantly”(jhn10:10). My hope and prayer is that we are living the life Jesus gives to us. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-31

Love in action

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and “Love your neighbor as yourself”(lk10:27). Jesus summed up all of Gods law with two simple commands: “Love the Lord your God” and”Love your neighbor.” The religious leaders of Christ’s day had more than six hundred man made laws. It was impossible for the Jews to keep them, thus loosing favor with God on each broken law. So, Jesus summed all the laws of God in just two simple ones to follow. By the way we still have trouble following these two- let alone the six hundred man-made. Most of us understand loving God, but how hard is it to love your neighbor? I love my family, but there are times when i find it very difficult to like them- let alone love them! If I have this much trouble loving someone who is related to me- how much harder is it to love someone I hardly know? The Greek word for “love” that Jesus’s using is a call to action. It is not a passive word, Jesus wants us to show love in action. We are to love all- help all- the gospel itself has no meaning unless it is shown in action. Are we loving others by our actions? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-29

Fear not or fear

Now, O Israel, what does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him?(deut10:12). The Bible gives us 365 times to fear not. “Fear not for I am with thee’(gen26:24), but it also tells us,”Fear the Lord.” If the Bible tells us, “Fear Not,” and yet it tells us to, “Fear,” which does it mean? I think the answer is both. Fear is a two-fold word. The first fear is marked by dread or anxious concern. The second reference to fear is awe, wonder and profound reverence. The second fear is one that inspires trust and confidence. This is the type of fear we are called to have. When we have this reverence fear of God, we do not cringe before Him. It is this fear that causes us to treat God with respect and trust. Jesus instructs us not to be worried, anxious, fret, obsess or fear what tomorrow may bring (mtt6:34). Our anxieties deplete us, but our faith builds us up. There is no shame in being afraid, we are all afraid from time to time. But there is an interesting paradox here... if we truly fear (reverence fear) God with all our heart... then we have nothing to fear. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-29

Fear not or fear

Now, O Israel, what does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him?(deut10:12). The Bible gives us 365 times to fear not. “Fear not for I am with thee’(gen26:24), but it also tells us,”Fear the Lord.” If the Bible tells us, “Fear Not,” and yet it tells us to, “Fear,” which does it mean? I think the answer is both. Fear is a two-fold word. The first fear is marked by dread or anxious concern. The second reference to fear is awe, wonder and profound reverence. The second fear is one that inspires trust and confidence. This is the type of fear we are called to have. When we have this reverence fear of God, we do not cringe before Him. It is this fear that causes us to treat God with respect and trust. Jesus instructs us not to be worried, anxious, fret, obsess or fear what tomorrow may bring (mtt6:34). Our anxieties deplete us, but our faith builds us up. There is no shame in being afraid, we are all afraid from time to time. But there is an interesting paradox here... if we truly fear (reverence fear) God with all our heart... then we have nothing to fear. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-28

Secret sins

If we confess our sin, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1jhn1:9). It has been said that Saint Augustine was one of the greatest theologians whoever lived. But before he surrendered his heart and life to Christ, he called himself “a wicked young man, one consumed with lust.” When he was first convicted of his sin, Augustine would pray, “O,Lord, make me pure- but not yet.” It was not until he prayed, “Now, Lord, now. Do it now Lord!” was he forgiven and cleansed from his sin. Saint Augustine doesn’t sound to much different from you and I. We each have our secret sins- problems with authority, drinking, bad language, lust, stealing (our list is endless). And we too can pray, “God help me with my sins... but not right now!” The Bible tells us that there is pleasure in sin for a season (heb11:25). And like Augustine it is not until we are ready to live our lives for Christ that we too can cry out “Now, Lord, do it now!” So the question has to be asked, “Are we praying ‘Make me pure , but not yet’” Or are we praying,”Now, Lord, now”? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-27

Casting your cares

Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you (1pt5:7). I’ve been told that the French translation of todays verse is,”Unloading your distresses upon God.” When my son was young he had a toy dump truck. He would put things (toys, blocks etc.) in its cargo area and push it around. But when he wanted to dump the things out there was a little lever on the side. He would pull the lever and the load would dump out. The dump truck was of no use until it’s load was dumped. The same can be said of us. We are never meant to be crushed under the weight of our burdens or cares. We like the dump truck can dump our burdens or cares at a certain spot- pulling the lever and unload ALL of our case at the foot of the cross. Discharge your burdens to the One who cares for you. I know society tells us that we are to handle our problems ourselves. But I am here to tell you that it is when we cast our burden to Christ- that we are able to handle life’s burdens and cares. Where are you casting your burdens- or are you like the dump truck, carrying them around? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-25

Joy

My soul shall be joyful in the Lord (psm35:9). When Jesus is the source of joy, no words can describe it. It is joy, “inexpressible and glorious”(1pt1:8). Christ is the answer to our sadness and discouragement, to the discord and division in our world. He can take the discouragement and pain of our lives and replace it with optimism and hope. If our hearts are attune to God through our faith in Christ, the result will be joyous optimism and good cheer. The reason? Because we know that God loves us and that nothing “shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”(rms8:39). “The joy of the Lord is our strength”(neh8:10). A joyful hearts energizes the spirit and the body. Please don’t let the troubles and trials of this life to rob you of the joy of the Lord. “Life need not be easy to be joyful. Joy is not the absence of trouble, but the presence of Christ”(W.VanderHoven). Have a blessed day.

2020-05-24

Temptations

(Take up) the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God (eph6:17). Temptation hasn’t changed since the garden of Eden. Adam and Eve were tempted the same way that we are tempted. Satan even tempted Christ the same way he tempts us, “the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life”(1jn2:16). You know it isn’t a sin to be tempted, our sin begins when we fail to yield to the temptation, instead of seeking God’s power to escape (which He always provides). When we are faced with Satan’s temptation, follow the example Christ has given us. When Satan says for a moments (or lifetime) bowing of your head to me, all the money, all the fame, all the businesses, all the success and power will be yours.” We only have to do what Jesus did. He did not argue with Satan; He did not debate with Satan; He did not rationalize with Satan. Instead, He replied, ”It is written...” Jesus simply replied to Satan’s temptation with the strong truth of the word of God. We would do good do the same as Jesus when we are faced with any temptation of Satan- today and tomorrow. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-22

God’s protecting angels

The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him and delivers them (psm34:7). The story is told of Captain Eddie Rickenbacker and his crew. Their B-17 had to be ditched in Pacific Ocean during WWII because it ran out of fuel. The Captain and his crew were lost at sea for weeks. After the Captain and his crew were rescued, the Captain writes of what happened while at sea. He write, “This part I would hesitate to tell except that there were six witnesses who saw it with me. A gull came out of nowhere, and lighted on my head- I reached up my hand very gently- I killed him and divided him equally among us. We ate every bit, even the little bones. Nothing ever tasted so good.” The gull saved the Captain and his crew from starvation. Years later Captain Rickenbacker would go on the explain that it was through this experience that he would come to know Christ. He explained, “I have no explanation except that God sent one of His angels to rescue us.” You and I may never know how many times in our lives God has sent His angel to protect us. It may only be when we get to Heaven that we fully understand the lengths that God has gone to protect us. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-22

God’s protecting angels

The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him and delivers them (psm34:7). The story is told of Captain Eddie Rickenbacker and his crew. Their B-17 had to be ditched in Pacific Ocean during WWII because it ran out of fuel. The Captain and his crew were lost at sea for weeks. After the Captain and his crew were rescued, the Captain writes of what happened while at sea. He write, “This part I would hesitate to tell except that there were six witnesses who saw it with me. A gull came out of nowhere, and lighted on my head- I reached up my hand very gently- I killed him and divided him equally among us. We ate every bit, even the little bones. Nothing ever tasted so good.” The gull saved the Captain and his crew from starvation. Years later Captain Rickenbacker would go on the explain that it was through this experience that he would come to know Christ. He explained, “I have no explanation except that God sent one of His angels to rescue us.” You and I may never know how many times in our lives God has sent His angel to protect us. It may only be when we get to Heaven that we fully understand the lengths that God has gone to protect us. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-21

Prodigal son

You may be sure that your sin will find you out (nub32:23). The Bible tell us in the book of Luke, the story of a loving father who had two sons. Both sons had all that they could want or need. But the youngest son was not satisfied- he wanted more. Instead of waiting for his father to pass and leave his estate to both of his sons, the youngest wanted his portion now. The father wanting his son to be happy, gave him as he requested. The youngest son left home and wasted all that the father had gave him. And the youngest son paid a heavy price for his foolishness, eventually living and eating with the pigs. Coming to his senses some time later, he swallowed his pride and headed home (Lk15:13-32). Most of us know this story of the prodigal son, maybe you have felt or done the some (walked away, afraid to return). There are two take aways (among many) from these passages. The first, sin is alway fun for a season, and there is always a penalty to be paid. And the second (and most important), no matter have far you may have strayed from our Heavenly Father- He is always waiting for us to return to Him. Are you ready to return to Him? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-21

Prodigal son

You may be sure that your sin will find you out (nub32:23). The Bible tell us in the book of Luke, the story of a loving father who had two sons. Both sons had all that they could want or need. But the youngest son was not satisfied- he wanted more. Instead of waiting for his father to pass and leave his estate to both of his sons, the youngest wanted his portion now. The father wanting his son to be happy, gave him as he requested. The youngest son left home and wasted all that the father had gave him. And the youngest son paid a heavy price for his foolishness, eventually living and eating with the pigs. Coming to his senses some time later, he swallowed his pride and headed home (Lk15:13-32). Most of us know this story of the prodigal son, maybe you have felt or done the some (walked away, afraid to return). There are two take aways (among many) from these passages. The first, sin is alway fun for a season, and there is always a penalty to be paid. And the second (and most important), no matter have far you may have strayed from our Heavenly Father- He is always waiting for us to return to Him. Are you ready to return to Him? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-19

Bar of steel

Stand fast in the Lord (phil4:1). An example is given of a bar of raw steel, which can be bought for just a few dollars. But when that same bar of steel has been thrust into the fires and processed into tiny watch springs for expensive watches, making it worth thousands of dollars. Fire and the skilled hands of the artisans made the difference in handing its value and worth. The same can be said of us as we allow God in the shaping of us. We will all face troubles and trials in our lives, and when we do we must learn to see the bigger picture. It has been said, the school of suffering may include seasons of silence, as well as seasons of darkness, depression, failure, trouble, loss, weakness and sorrow. So, it is imperative to remember that all of life consist of seasons and that these seasons are never permanent. As the troubles and trial of life come and go- “Let your scars remind you of where you have been, but never let them determine where you are going”(unkn). We are survivors not statistics, we are overcomes not victims. Remember it is the skilled hand of the artisan that gave the raw bar of steel its worth. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-17

Your Throne

Your throne, O God, is forever and ever (psm45:6). Many people today in light of recent events are asking, “Where is our history going? Are we getting better or are we getting worse? Or will we just end up destroying ourselves?“ In the book of Matthew, Jesus teaches us a prayer,”The Lords Prayer.” In the prayer, He prays, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven’(6:10). One day soon, this will come to pass. The last chapter of our human history will be written, but it will not be written by any human leader. Only God will write it’s last chapter. One day our human race will stand on the edge of the abyss of self-destruction, and God will intervene. Jesus is coming back, and He will rule as our righteous King forever. We do not know the day or the hour but He is coming. One day He will set all things right. So, in light of the recent events, no matter how good or bad the future maybe remember: if you belong to the King (Christ)- you are on the winning side! Have a blessed day.

2020-05-14

Child of God

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find (mt7:7). Ask any parent and they will agree, their children have no problems letting them know what they want (mom, mom, mom!)... And as parents we encourage them to do so. As a child of God’s, we are encouraged, “Let us... come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and grace to help in times of need”(heb4:16). God wants us to come to Him, because He is concerned about what troubles us. He is aware we depend on Him for our necessities. The Bible tells us, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock, and it will be open to you”(mt7:7). What are the troubles that you are facings? Financial losses, loss of a job, family issues, health problems, loss of a loved one? Are you worried or overwhelmed by what may happen next? Remember: Because you are a child of God’s through Christ in faith, know you can take your troubles to Christ. Know that He loves you and is able and willing to help. Don’t carry your burdens any longer- take them boldly to the throne of grace and leave hem there. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-13

Fortress and refuge

He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust (psm91:2). Webster tells us the word refuge means, ”a condition of being safe or shelter from pursuit, danger or harm.” It also tells us that the word fortress means, ”a strong hold,a large strong fortification.” If we are to understand our verse better, in short, our God is the One who keeps us safe and sheltered from harm. The test and troubles of life require extra grace, and whatever comes our way God does provide a way for escape. Sometimes our troubles and trial end quickly, sometimes they last longer. But in either case God does provide a place to rest. Our God delights in making His strength made known to us in our times of troubles, trials and weakness. He is faithful in providing us a place of refuge and a fortress. Remember: the sun has a sinking spell every night, but it rises every morning. You may be in for the fight of your life- let God be your place of refuge, your fortress of rest. You may be down today, but you don’t have to stay down. Rest in His fortress and refuge and rise again! Have a blessed day.

2020-05-12

Fear not

Let this mind be in you which was also in Jesus Christ (phil2:5). Our fears- fear of rejection, fear of making the wrong decisions, fear of our beliefs being attacked, fear of our faith will be shaken, fear that we will fail or disappoint God. All of these and more can make us unwilling to give voice to our own convictions or even listen to those of others. Our fears, even the smallest of them can cause us to question our faith. Jesus had the purest mind this world has even seen. His convictions were so strong, so unswerving that He was not afraid. Jesus had no fear, He had no need to fence Himself off from others. Jesus knew the difference between graciousness and compromises. Our fears deplete us, but our faith builds us up. Our fear destroys us, but courage sustains. Our fear breeds uncertainty, but trust brings confidence. Never let your fear of today, take away your confidence for tomorrow. “Anxiety never strengthens you for tomorrow; it only weakens you for today”(unknown). It has been said that the Bible tells us not to fear 365 times... thats one for every day! Have a blessed day.

2020-05-11

Faith without worry

You are all children of God through faith in Jesus Christ (gal3:26). Have you ever noticed how children never worry that their parents are going to protect them or care for them? Because of their relationship with their parents; children are not poor; but if it weren’t for this relationship, they would indeed be helpless and poor. Our children spend little time worrying about what to eat or what to wear or where are they going to live. They assume (they have a right to) that all will be provided by their parents. When we come to Christ ,we become children of God, and we can trust our Heavenly Father. Faith is confidence in God. Unbelief is confidence in something else. Our faith in God is our greatest empowering force we have. Our faith in God is our greatest motivation and gives us the ability achieve anything that we may face in this world. The Bible tells us, “What man is there among you who, if his son ask for bread, will give him a stone?... How much more will your Father who is in Heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”(mt7:9,11). We must admit we are poor before we can be made rich. We must admit that we are destitute before we can become children of God. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-08

Poor in spirit

Blessed are the poor in spirit (mt5:3). What does it mean to be poor in spirit? I think first, its important for us to be aware of our spiritual poverty. We are spiritually bankrupted without God. Our souls need as much attention as does our physical bodies. Just like our physical body our souls needs to be fed and exercised, otherwise it will become weak and anemic. Our outward conduct (the way we behave) is easy to control, but which one of us has the ability to control their soul? The souls qualities like faith, humility, love and patience are impossible for us to control. Only God is able to strengthen these inner qualities . Our souls require fellowship and communion with God. It has been said that “a wise person is the one who openly confesses their lack of spiritual wealth and cries out in humility,”God, be merciful to me a sinner”(lk18:13). God wants to build us up each day, if only we would commit time for Him. In God’s economy spiritual emptiness comes before filling, and spiritual poverty before blessings. Are we willing to allow God to fill us with His inner qualities? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-07

Survivors not statistics

My flesh and my heart fail; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever (psm73:26). If we live long enough we will face some type of troubles and trials. Some may even be in the middle of one right now. Some of the troubles and trials we face can harden us- making us sour, bitter and even skeptical. But it doesn’t have to be this way. The troubles and trials we bear with our Savior can bring us a fresh vision of God and even a new outlook on life- an outlook of peace and hope. I think I’ve said this before... our trials and troubles are not the real problem, its the way we view our problems. When troubles and trials hit us they can overwhelm us, making us think our world is falling apart. But in time we emerge from one season and enter another. If we learn to trust God with a child like dependence, we understand that our troubles will not destroy us. So my point is... when we face troubles and trials we must learn to see the bigger picture in God’s plan for us. Let the scars we have remind us of where we have been, but never let them determine where we are going. We are survivors, not statistics. Have a bless day.

2020-05-06

What is a Christian

Not everyone who says to Me,”Lord, Lord,” shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven (mt7:21). Not everyone who calls themself a Christian actually can tell you what it means to be a Christian. The word Christian means,”a partisan for Christ.” Webster tells us the definition of a Christian is someone who has chosen to follow and believes in Jesus Christ. Webster also tells us the word partisan means, someone with a firm adherent to (party, faction, cause or person). So, in other words.. a Christian is someone who has a firm adherent to the teachings of Jesus Christ. We believe in the Bible and we follow the teachings of Jesus Chris. If you ask the average person “What is a Christian?” They might say a Christian is someone who prays a lot. Or maybe they would say a Christian is someone who lives “by the golden rule.” To the average person this is what a Christian does, but this is not what makes us a Christian. So, what is a Christian? They are those who have admitted that no matter how good they are or what they do, it will never allow them into Heaven. They have asked Christ to forgive them of their sins. And have asked Christ into their hearts. The question should be.. “Have we confessed our sins and our need for forgiveness to Christ and have committed ourselves (a partisan for Christ) to Him as Savior and Lord? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-05

Getting or giving...

Give, and it will be given to you (lk6:38). Give, its definition means, to freely transfer the possession of something to someone or to hand over to. Christ commands us to give. But its much more than a command. It is our invitation to glorious and abundant living. When (or if) we get our attitude toward money correct, it will help straighten out almost every other part of our lives. Have you ever noticed how cruel and deceptive a master money can be? More and more people spend their entire Iives slavishly serving it- and most of them don’t even realize it. Its no wonder Christ warned us, “You cannot serve both God and Money”(mt6:24). The chief motivation behind the selfish person is “get.” The chief motivation behind the dedicated Christian should be “give.” Christ tells us, “Give, and it will be given to you.” This is a promise from Christ, and we know Christ never breaks his promises. I dare you test Him on this promise. Getting... Giving? Which is true of you? Have a blessed day.

2020-05-03

God’s Book of Life

Only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life (will enter the glory of Heaven)(rev21:27). We will never be good enough to get into Heaven on our own. And the reason is because God is absolutely pure and holy and we are not, one sin-just one (and it doesn’t even have to be a grievous one) is enough to keep us out of Heaven. Any and every sin is an offense to God. God does not take our good deeds and our bad deeds and weigh them against each other like many believe to allow us entrance into Heaven. No, the Bible is very clear about this, “whoever keep the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of them (jas2:10). It is for this reason we need Jesus, for He came to our world to take away our sins. We cannot remove our own sin and guilt- but Jesus can, because He is the sinless Son of God. When we come to know Jesus as Savior and Lord, all of our sins are placed on Him, and we are forgiven. Our name is then written in God’s Book of Life- because of Jesus not us! We cannot trust our own goodness- but we can trust in Jesus and what He has done for us. Is your name writing in God’s Book of Life? I sure hope so. Have a blessed day.

2020-05-02

Love your neighbor

All the law is filled in one word.. “love you neighbor as yourself”(gal5:14). Suppose you knew of someone who gave everything they had to charity. We would probably say they were a good person, maybe even a fine Christian. But the apostle Paul tell us, if we don’t act out of love, “I am nothing” (1cor13:2). Its been said, “Life minus love equals nothing”(G.Sweeting). We are a selfish people, we love ourselves more than others. But I wonder as Christians, “Do we have this type of love- the kinda love that puts others ahead of ourselves?” Without Christ in our heart, without the Holy Spirit guiding our lives, we are incapable of this type of love. This is the same type of love Christ had for us, when He willingly left the majesty of Heaven and went to a cruel cross for our salvation. Only the presence of God can give us a selfless love for others as the Spirit changes us from within. Christ is the only one who can free us from the chains of selfishness, jealousy, and indifference. Our “Spiritual gifts are as optional as eyesight; you can walk without eyes, but you cannot see without them”(H.Horton). So the question has to be asked, “Do other see the love of Christ in our actions?” Have a blessed day.

2020-04-30

Patience

As God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourself with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience (col3:12). Have you ever said to yourself, “Lord, please give me patience- and give it to me now!”(ok, maybe I’m the only one). Patience is one of the hardest virtues to acquire. The apostle Paul gives us a list of virtues that are part of every Christian’s character: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Paul list these characteristics in a specific order for a reason. We cannot have kindness without compassion, we cannot have humility without kindness. We cannot have gentleness without humility and we cannot have patience without gentleness. Each character builds off the preceding characteristic. I think patience is the last on our list because it strikes a blow at our own natural selfishness. Our patience is test every day and in many different ways. Ask any parent and they will confirm how often their patience is tested on any given day. Patience is so critical because without it the other four- compassion, kindness, humility, and gentleness are impossible. These characteristics all go hand in hand. When we are at our wits end and our patience threatens to overwhelm us, ask God to take our impatience away and replace it with His patience. Remember: His patience with us is beyond measure. Have a blessed day.

2020-04-28

The importance of God’s House

Jesus increased in wisdom and strength, and in favor with God and men (lk2:52). We are not told much of Christ’s childhood, but in the second chapter of Luke, we are given some insight. We are told that when Jesus was about twelve He and His parents went to Jerusalem for Passover. One of the most important feast of the Jewish calendar. After celebrating Passover, Jesus became separated from Mary and Joseph. When Mary and Joseph finally found Jesus (which was a couple of days later). They found Him in the temple listening to the teachers of the Torah and Psalms. When Mary and Joseph rebuked Him, Jesus replied, “Why were you searching for Me? Didn’t you know, I had to be in my Father’s house?”(lk2:49). If Christ found it so important at a young age to be in God’s house... How much more should we? “It is a fact that those whose lives are daily being conformed to the Word and purposes of God will be given the ability to see issues more plainly”(M.Watts). In the light of our worlds testings and trials.. are we seeing things plainly or through fear? Have a blessed day.

2020-04-27

Teach us to pray

Lord, teach us to ray (lk11:1). When do we pray? Maybe, before our meals? Maybe if we are lucky before we go to sleep at night? Or do we only pray in times of stress, danger or uncertainty? I think its instinctive for us to pray when we are in times of troubles, because it is then that we realize how helpless we truly are. Christ in His many ministries instructed His followers and us to pray at all times. So fervent and so direct were Christ’s prayers that once after He finished, His disciples pleaded, “Lord, teach us to pray.” They yearned to be in touch with God in the way they knew Christ to be. Have you ever had the same desires as the disciples, Lord, teach me to pray! Our prayers shouldn’t be causal, they shouldn’t be sporadic or even dictated by the needs of the moment. Our prayer should be as much of our lives as breathing. Our prayers should be as easy as talking with God. No fancy words needed. “In the day of prosperity we have many refuges to resort to; in the day of adversity, only one. And one is enough- when it is the right one”(H.Bonar). Have a blessed day.

2020-04-26

Growing spiritually

Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2pt3:18). Have you ever wondered how we grow spiritually? Some will tell you to find a good church, others will say read a certain book. While both will help, the only true way to grow spiritually is to read and study the Bible. How else can we understand why we believe what we believe. Its kinda like saying you are a specialist in something and have no knowledge of it subject matter. There are some other things we can do to help us grow spiritually. Prayer is a way of communicating with God. Prayer is much more than asking for things. Our savior is not a genie in a bottle, granting us things just because we asked or wanted something. “At the profoundest depths in life, men talk not about God, but with Him”(D.E.Trueblood). We also grow spiritually through the fellowship with fellow believers. “We all have people who will pull on us, but we all need to have a few friends who propel us”(unknown). The last way we grow is by sharing our faith with others. We receive strength when we strengthen others. Even the slightest bit of encouragement goes a long way. Never let our problems keep us from helping someone else. We should make it our goal- starting today- to grow stronger in Christ. Have a blessed day.

2020-04-24

Our perfect God

As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless (psm18:30). Have you ever wondered why it is so important that God is perfect? We can agree that God is all powerful, all knowing, all loving and absolutely pure, holy and just. But He also absolutely perfect in every way possible. But what if He were not perfect? What if He made mistakes- or failed to keep a promise- or only did things halfway- or sometimes told a lie- in other words, He did the same things we often do (or in some cases, don’t do)? If God were like us... why bother to trust Him? Why bother to worship Him? But thank the Lord, He isn’t like us. Our God is absolutely and completely perfect in every way possible. And because He is perfect, we can trust Him absolutely. We can trust His love for us. We can trust in the many promises He gives us. We can trust in where He will lead us. We can trust Him to be with us even in life’s darkest trials. But our greatest way we can trust Him is to place our faith and trust in Christ, our only way of salvation. “I am no longer anxious about anything, as I realize the Lord is able to carry out His will, and His will is mine. It makes no matter where He places me or how. That is rather for Him to consider than for me; for the easiest positions He must give me, His grace and the most difficult, His grace is sufficient”(H.Taylor). Have a blessed day.

2020-04-23

The Gulf Stream

They are of the world... We are of God (1jhn4:5-6). We are told that the Gulf Streams flows off the east coast of the USA it flows from south to north and it is able to maintain its warm tempertures even in the icy waters of the Northern Atlantic states. For the Christian believer we in the world, but should not be absorbed by it. If we are to fulfill our callings as believers we should not be chilled or consumed by the indifferent, godless society we live in. The Bible tells us,”Do not be conformed by this world. We can enjoy the things of this world but we are not to let them take the place of God in our life. It is true that Jesus spent time with the unbeliever, but He didn’t allow Himself to be overwhelmed or conformed to the ways of the ungodly. He used every chance to present spiritual truths and to lead a soul from death to life. Can the same be said of us, when we come in contact with this unbelieving world? When others look at you... are they able to see Jesus in you? I sure hope so. Have a blessed day.

2020-04-22

Contentment

I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content (phil4:11). Any popularity or praise can be far more dangerous than persecution, that a Christian can face. It can turn us away from Christ without us even being aware of it. It can make us just like those in Christ’s day who “loved the praise of men more than the praise of God”(jhn12:43). It is easy to lose our perspective when things are going well. But we are to be like the apostle Paul, to be content in whatever state we find ourselves. Our most consuming passion should always be to please Christ our Lord. That way when the troubles and trials of life come along- we know that they are there to teach and perfect us for Christ’s service. He will enrich our circumstances, be they pleasant or disagreeable by His presence with us. Ask Christ to keep you from worrying about what others may think and to make us content with whatever He sends our way. Remember: ALL of our tomorrow’s have to pass before God before they get to us! Have a blessed day.

2020-04-20

Life’s fiery furnace

Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life (rev2:10). We are told Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were threeJewish teenagers that were captives living in Babylon. They were exceptional young men who follow the word of God. They could have bowed down and avoided any trouble, but it would have compromised all that they believed. They refused to worship Nebuchadnezzar golden image. Instead the three Jewish teens risked the Kings rage and refused to bow down. They did not bend, budge, or bow:”Be it known unto thee, O King, that we will not serve thy gods, nor will we worship the golden image which thou has set up”(dan3:18). So, the king had them thrown into a fiery furnace. They were confident that God would deliver them, even if the Lord chose not to spare their lives. God chose to spare them. And the same can be said of us today. God is with us in the fiery furnaces of life in our times of trouble. The Bible tells us that nothing- ABSOLUTELY NOTHING-“shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”(rms8:39). Have a blessed day.

2020-04-18

Our home in Heaven

In my Father’s house are many mansions (jhn14:2). My husband, my mom and I had the awesome chance to build a new home. It is not a mansion by any means. But it is beautiful and twice the size of my old home. But no matter how big or how beautiful our homes might be the Bible tells us that this world and the houses we build for ourselves is not our permanent home. Our permanent home will be in Heaven with our Savior. The disciples (followers ) of Christ gave up their homes and lands. They knew little of home life and the joys or pains that come with it. Its almost as if Christ was telling them, “we have no lasting home on earth, but My Fathers house is a home where we will be together for all eternity.” “Heaven is a prepared place for a prepared people, and those who enter shall find that they are neither unknown nor unexpected”(B.Ryle). As beautiful as our new house might be, it will pale in comparison to the home that awaits us Heaven. It has been said, “that even in life’s happiest times, they are but a moment in comparison to the joys that we will in Heaven. Some day we will be called home, and we know Christ will be there, but will we hear Him speak these words, ”well done my good and faithful servant”(mt25:21). I sure hope so. Have a blessed day.

2020-04-16

Go...

How can they believe in the one who they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? (Rms10:14). This verse asks two important questions, how will the people around us know Christ if they have never seen or heard Him? That my friends is left up to those who do believe. The Bible teaches us that Christ commanded His followers to “go into all the world and preach the gospel”(mk16:15) and “go therefore and make disciples of all nations”(mt28:19). It is not an option if you call yourself a follower of Christ. We are not promised that our obedience will be easy, fun, glamorous, exciting, or romantic. Our bible contains many instructions. These instructions are God’s directives- these are His commands. When we are obedient to His instructions it begins to fortify our souls- no matter how easy or difficult they may be. Our obedience builds our faith and our successes in the faith realm will build up our spiritual man. Our repeated victories will only serve to increase our confidence. If you call yourself a Christian, God is calling us to share His Word- NO EXCUSES!. There is many things we can do with our lives, and there are many ways we can spend it- but how many of us will enable us to have no regrets at the end of our lives? “Theological truth is unless until it is obeyed. The purpose behind all doctrine is to secure moral action!” (A.W.Tozer). Our obedience to Christ’s commands is the only path of no regrets. Will you have no regrets? Have a blessed day.

2020-04-14

Gratitude

No good thing will He withhold from those who will walk uprightly (psm84:11). We read the headlines, we hear the news reports each day- each are meant to warn and scare us. We know our world has many troubles and sorrows. But our lives are not filled with gloom and doom (like many would think). Our blessings and the enjoyment we have in life come from the hand of God. Think of the many blessings we have and yet take them for granted: the next breath we take, our health, our children/grandchildren, our family, our friends, our ability to see, hear and speak, all of these and many more come from the hand of God. But the greatest gift God has given us is One and Only Son Jesus. So how do we respond to the many gifts God has given us? It can be summed up in one word- GRATITUDE. Webster defines gratitude as the quality of being thankful (our readiness to show appreciation). How do we show our gratitude? By giving back to God a part of what He has given to us. You know giving back to others, not thinking all things are about us (they are not), show love to those around us, use common courtesies to one another. What have we done to show those around us that we are grateful for them? What have we done to show God that we are grateful for ALL that He has done? Have a blessed day.

2020-04-13

Protection

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in faith (1pt5:8-9). No one who call themself a Christian is exempt from the attacks of Satan. His attacks are personal, aggressive, intelligent, cunning, destructive and he knows our every weakness. Our earthly weapons are of no use against him. We must use spiritual weapons against him. The apostle Paul gives us a list of spiritual weapons, they are found i the book of Ephesians (6:12-18). The title of “overcomes” is given only to those who have overcome the obstacles and the difficulties of adversity. They are those who have risen above the schemes of the devil. We are told, “Put on the full armour of God”(eph6:12). Placing on the Helmet of Salvation (protecting our minds and thoughts). Putting on our Breastplate of Righteousness (protecting our heart/soul). Putting on our Belt of Truth (speaking/hearing the truth). Holding fast to our Shield of the Spirit (blocking the lies of Satan). Gripping tight to the Sword of the Word (our only offensive weapon/the Word of God). And lastly our Shoes of Peace (walk in peace with God and men). Are we prepared each day for what lies and deceits that Satan will throw at us each day? You have the knowledge of what it will take to defeat him. Have a blessed day.

2020-04-12

Easter

He is not here, He is risen (lk24:6). For the Christian’s, Easter Sunday is the most triumphant and joyous day on our Christian calendar. But for most the resurrection of Christ is symbolized by the Easter Bunny, new clothes, bright colored Easter baskets. But this year things are a little different for all of us. Most of us are in our homes and will be spent alone. We will not be in church, and family time together. But remember; the wonder of Christ’s resurrection is the hope that beats in the heart of every believer everywhere as we remember “Chris the Lord us risen today.” It is our message to the unbelieving world- “Jesus is alive!” It is this message that sets us apart from all others. It takes us out of the category of any dead superstition and any archaic religion and makes it the abiding faith of millions. The angle outside the tombs message is true: “He is not here, but is risen!” So as celebrate this Easter a little differently this year... it doesn’t change our truest reason for our celebration! He is alive!! Happy Easter ✝️✝️✝️. Have a blessed day.

2020-04-11

Forgive and forget...

You have heard that it was said, Love your your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you: Love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you (mt5:43-44). We have all heard the expression- maybe you have even said it yourself- “Forgive and Forget.” But is it even possible to “forgive and forget?” Have you ever been hurt, maybe even betrayed by someone? I have- and it wasn’t fun, my emotional scars still ache. The last thing that I could ever do is to forgive and forget. But Jesus wants us to go one step farther: Not only does He want us to forgive and forget, but He also wants us to love and pray for the one who has hurt us! This absolutely impossible without Gods help. Remember: God forgave us the moment we excepted Christ. And we hurt Christ far more than anyone has hurt us. But if we allow God to show us- we can begin to see the person who has hurt us, through God’s eyes. God loves them just as much as He loves us. But just as important- holding on to un-forgiveness keeps us from growing in our walk with Christ. It has been said, “Forgiveness doesn’t excuse the hurtful actions of others. Forgiveness stops their actions from destroying our hearts”(unknown). Can you pray and love those who have hurt you. With God’s help you can... Have a blessed day.

2020-04-10

Good Friday

He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was laid upon him, and by his wounds we are healed (isa53;5). The Flogging alone should have killed Him- small pieces of glass, bones, rocks, and steel was used to peel the flesh from His back. Crucified- nailed to a rough wooden cross. Left to hang there in excruciating pain, experiencing death by suffocation. But why? The Bible tells us He did it for one reason and one reason only: to become the final and complete sacrifice for our sins. All of us have sinned and are guilty before God; each of us deserve death, because God is holy and just and our sin must be punished. But thank goodness Jesus became our willing substitute, so our sins were placed on Him. The Bible also tells us, “Christ died for (our) sin once and for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you (us) to God”(1pt3:18). Christ died in our place, He didn’t have to... but He did. But again why? Because He loves us and He wants us to be with Him in Heaven. Are you ready to spend eternity with Him? I know I am! Have a blessed Good Friday!

2020-04-09

The best is yet to come!

Because of His great love... (He) made us alive together with Christ (eph2:4-5). Our lives may seem monotonous, boring or filled with drudgery. But as Christians, we are not working for an hour, or for a day, but for eternity. When our bodies have worn out and is ready to take on immortality, the next part of our work will begin. The Bible teaches us that we will serve God forever in eternity. But the difference in Heaven, our bodies will never grow old, bored or weary. It has been said that,”Peace rules the day when Christ rules the mind.” God breathed the breath of life into Adam, and he became a living soul. The breath of God, those inspired words resuscitate with us as well. They put the wind back into our sail when life becomes monotonous, boring or filled with drudgery. God’s Words quicken, enlighten and are life-giving. All of these describe the effects the Holy Spirit has when He speaks a reviving word to our hearts. So as we look to the hours, days and weeks to come- know and remember the work we do today for the cause of Christ is all in preparation for our eternity with Him. I know I have said this before, but as Christians this is the worse life will ever get... but for the lost this is the best they can be hoped for. Look up our eternity await for us! The best is yet to come! Have a blessed day.

2020-04-08

Christ’s workshop

They were all filled with the Holy Spirit (acts2:4). The early Christians had no buildings, no cars, no printing presses, no t.v.’s, no radio’s nor internets. Yet, this small group of believers turned their world upside down for Christ. In the face of opposition and overwhelming odds, they stayed courageous, bold, dauntless and full of faith. They lived their lives for Christ no matter what others thought. “Before Pentecost the struggle was hopeless. After Pentecost they overcame. The Spirit made slaves into sovereigns, victims into victors, and cowards into conquerors”(J.Brice). What was their secret? The Bible tells us: They were all filled with the Holy Spirit. The Spirit changed their lives. Those they met couldn’t help but to be impressed by their love and quality and purity of their lives. Ian Thomas makes this profound statement: “To be in Christ- that is redemption; but for Christ to be in you- that is sanctification! To be in Christ- that makes you fit for Heaven; but for Christ to be in you- that makes you fit for earth! To be in Christ- that chances your destination; but for Christ to be in you- that changes your destiny! The one makes Heaven your home- the other makes this world His workshop.” What keeps us from turning our world upside down for the cause of Christ? Have a blessed day.

2020-04-07

Friends

Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy (heb12:14). It has been said, “In prosperity our friends know us; in adversity we know our friends “(J.Churton). “The true friend is the one who is faithful in adversity and who abides with is in the darkness of night”(C.Macartney). The Bible tells us that Job had three friends who came to visit him in his time of grief. At first, they helped Job. It wasn’t long before their help stopped- it came right after they began to talk... Job was in desperate need of companionship and not advise (and bad advise at that). Our friends can be a tremendous asset to us in a time of calamity. When we are ministered to in our time of trauma, we will never forget the one who helped. Our “moral support system “ is an invaluable aid in our troubles and trials of life. Our true friends are the ones who will love us regardless of anything we may say or do when we are under duress. We do not need the kind of friends Job had- those who critique and criticize in our time of need. We need friends who will help energize us not drain us. Open the door to those who will build us up, and close the door to those who burden us. What kind of friends do you have and what type of friend are you? Have a blessed day.

2020-04-05

The importance of the Bible

Righteous are you, O Lord, And your laws are right. The statues you have laid down are righteous; the are fully trustworthy (psm119:137-138). We are told it took sixteen hundred years to write. There are more than thirty authors acting as secretaries for God wrote it’s sixty-six books. Over the sixteen hundred years those authors all wrote the same message, and so unified is the message that it actually is comprised in one Book. That Book is the Bible. We find in its pages, the weakness of human nature are admitted, and life is presented a it actually is found (with no fluff). The message of the Bible is the story of God’s redeeming humanity through Jesus Christ. And the truth in its pages are worthy for us to emulate. “The Bible is a book comparison with which all others in my eyes are of minor importance, and which in all my complexities and distress have never failed to give me light and strength”(R.E.Lee). In our bibles we find the strength we need to face the trouble and trials of life. We find the hope that this world can not give us. Remember the importance of it Words as we enter into this Easter holiday season. We have reason for hope! Have a blessed day.

2020-04-03

The cross is foolishness to others

For the message off the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God (1cor1:18). The question has been asked, “Why is the cross so offensive?” The answer is for many reasons, but here are just a few. The first is because it condemns the world. We are sinners and we don’t like others pointing out our faults- none of them. The second is not only is the cross offensive, but it confuses the unbelieving world- because blood was shed and to most blood is repulsive. In Colossians we are told by Christ’s death on the cross, we are set free of our guilt and shame and excepted as righteous in God’s sight (1:20). The third reason is the cross demands a life of discipline. Following Christ means we are to deny ourselves and bear ones own cross. The fourth reason is that it points to the end of the world as we know it, which is marked by the return of Christ. The fifth reason is that Christ is the only way to salvation, the only way to God. So as we face uncertain days ahead, remember we do not face it alone if we are a believer in Christ. We have the promise of Heaven! Have a blessed day.

2020-04-02

Encouragement to someone in need

The light of the righteous rejoices (prov13:9). It has been said that we receive strength as we strengthen others. This has been never more true than when we are suffering some type of adversity. We can curtail our sorrows and anxieties by helping others who are in need. Helping others is always a great way to lighten our troubles. The Bible tells us what we do for others, God will do for us. “Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord”(eph6:8). The smallest amount of encouragement we offer to others is not only is heard in Heaven, but also has its reward on earth. Even in this time of uncertainty don’t turn in on yourself. Most of us are at home for one reason or another (mostly because we are being quarantined), refuse to isolate yourself. Now, I’m not saying run out when we are suppose to stay put. But what I’m saying is maybe call someone or send a card that can be of some encouragement or maybe pay for someone’s take-out. You never know how much this can be not only a blessing to someone, but how this can bless you too! “Blessing others is the way to increase prosperity, and blessing others when in adversity is the way to remove it”(unknown). Do you know of someone who can use some encouragement during this trying time? Be that blessing for someone! Have a blessed day.

2020-03-30

Joy of the Lord

Rejoice in the Lord always (phil4:4). The Bible tells us,”the joy of the Lord is your strength “(neh8:10). A joyful heart can and will energize the spirit and the body. But the troubles and trials of life can sap our strengths. The life of a Christian is a joyful one. But too many of us live our lives just the opposite. Christianity was never meant to make us miserable. The ministry of Jesus Christ was one of joy. The Bible teaches us that a life filled with inward peace and outward victory is a Christians birthright. Choose to sow good seeds today, seeds thanksgiving, seeds of praise, seeds of faith, seeds of prayer, seeds of love and seeds of peace. Do not remain in the bondage that can come from the troubles and trials of life. It is ours to choose! We must choose to sow if we expect our wintertime of troubles and trials to break into springtime of joy. What a witness to the world we (Christians) would be, “if only they (we) were more evidently very happy people”(A.Carmichael). Our joy is one of the marks of a true believer. Do others see the joy of Christ in our lives each day? Or just another miserable person? My hope is that you choose joy! Have a blessed day.

2020-03-29

The Lord shall renew our faith

But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles (isa40:31). It does not teach us anywhere in the Bible that Christians are exempt from the troubles and trials of life. We live in a fallen world that is filled with sin, and therefore we share in its misery and pain. I am told that the eagle has the unique ability to lock its joints and is able to soar effortlessly on the updrafts of air instead of flapping its wings. As we wait on God, He helps us use the winds of our troubles and trials to soar above them. Our bibles contain many instructions and promises. God’s instructions are His directives- His commands. Abiding in God’s instructions will fortify our souls. Our obedience builds our faith, and our successes in the faith realm builds up our spiritual man. Our repeated victories (no matter how big or how little) serve only to increase our confidence in our walk with God. The best thing we can today is to heed every instruction and every promise that God brings to our attention. Walk in the light you have . Obey every command. Go all in when it comes to complying with God’s will. And in times when we are unsure what to do next, do all that you have been instructed to do, and the next step will become evident. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-28

Helping hand

Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man (mk1:41). The man had leprosy, and it was the custom of Jesus’ day that anyone with leprosy was to shout out, “Unclean! Unclean!” It was done to let anyone around know not to touch them. But Jesus did the opposite of those around Him. Instead of staying clear of the man, Jesus reached out and touched the man. We do not know how long the man had his leprosy. We don’t know how long it had been since the man had felt a human touch, a warm embrace, a pat on the back, a kind handshake. Had it been month’s or years? The Bible tells us that the man needed relief from his disease. But before Jesus could heal the man’s skin He needed to heal the man’s emotional pain. Jesus simply reached out and touched the man. Can you imagine what went through the man’s mind as someone actually touched him? Then Jesus went about the business of healing the man of his leprosy. Jesus was setting an example for us, that the best way to help others (the oppressed, the sick and the poor) is to touch them with our compassion. Jesus showed His compassion for this man and countless others. Are we following Jesus’ example of showing compassion for others? Are we lending a helping hand, a kind word, a warm embrace to those around us who are in need of comfort? I sure hope so. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-26

Keep Eternity in view

The Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angles (mt16:2). Right now Christ is hidden from our view (even though the Holy Spirit lives in our hearts). Today we live in a day of faith. The apostle Paul tells us, “We walk by faith, not by sight”(2cor5:7). Only in the future will we “see Him as He is”(1jhn3:2). Christ’s first appearing was quiet, almost unnoticed. A humble manger, a few simple shepherds in a insignificant part of the Roman Empire. Christ’s second appearing will be quiet the opposite... ALL shall know!. His second appearing will be glorious and universal. Christ will be accompanied by His angles- and He will defeat every enemy until He subdues the whole earth. It is so easy to lose sight of eternity as we face the troubles and trials of every day life. Most of the time eternity is the last thing we think of at the end of each day. Our present seems so real and overcrowded, while our unseen future in Heaven seems so illusory. “Active faith gives thanks for a promise even though it is not yet performed knowing that God’s contracts are as good as cash”(M.Henry). Don’t be consumed by the things that cloud our present. But instead, “seek those things which are above, where Christ is”(col3:1). Have a blessed day.

2020-03-25

Peace in the midst of uncertainty

Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble (psm119:165). In light of today’s troubles and trials: viruses, government shutdowns, and stock market plummets, they are revealing just how much our society is uneasy at best and on the verge of hysteria at worse. But God’s gives us a plan for peace in the mist of our crisis- and His name is Jesus! In fact the Bible calls Him the “Prince of Peace”(isa9:6). God gives us a receipt for peace, it is found in Philippines 4:6-8. “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known... Finally whatsoever things are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, if there be any virtue and any praise, think on these things.” Our steps to peace: First- prayer-“in everything by prayer.” Second- comes praise-“with thanksgiving and supplication.” Third- there is peace-“the peace of God.” And fourth- positive thoughts- “think on these things.” God’s peace can and will surpass our human comprehension. It’s been said; “Peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but by the presence of God”(A.Maclaren). So, as we face the challenging days and weeks ahead- are you holding to the peace of God or are you being swayed by the mass hysteria of our society today? My prayer is that you are holding fast to the Prince of Peace... We do have four steps to help us. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-24

Live by faith

The Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angles (mt16:2). Right now Christ is hidden from our view (even though the Holy Spirit lives in our hearts). Today we live in a day of faith. The apostle Paul tells us, “We walk by faith, not by sight”(2cor5:7). Only in the future will we “see Him as He is”(1jhn3:2). Christ’s first appearing was quiet, almost unnoticed. A humble manger, a few simple shepherds in a insignificant part of the Roman Empire. Christ’s second appearing will be quiet the opposite... ALL shall know!. His second appearing will be glorious and universal. Christ will be accompanied by His angles- and He will defeat every enemy until He subdues the whole earth. It is so easy to lose sight of eternity as we face the troubles and trials of every day life. Most of the time eternity is the last thing we think of at the end of each day. As we face the future in this uncertain time... do not let those in power overshadow the glory we are to have in Heaven. Our present seems so real and overcrowded, while our unseen future in Heaven seems so illusory. “Active faith gives thanks for a promise even though it is not yet performed knowing that God’s contracts are as good as cash”(M.Henry). Don’t be consumed by the things in today’s headlines which can cloud our present. But instead, “seek those things which are above, where Christ is”(col3:1). Have a blessed day.

2020-03-23

Worry not...

As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him (psm103:13). As parents, our children spend little time worrying about things (what to eat, what to wear or where to live). They assume that as their parents we will take care of all of these things (and we do). So, as a child of God, we are His dependent. The Bible tells, “DO NOT WORRY... saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’... But seek first the Kingdom of God... and all these things shall be added to you”(mt6:31,33). Sadly, worry is a ingrained habit that most of us possess (something we do so well). But because we are God’s children- He alone is responsible for our needs. And it is for this reason the Bible reminds us, “casting ALL your cares upon Him, for He cares for you”(1pt5:7). So... in other words, let God do the worrying. He reminds us- “I’ll take the burden- don’t give it a second thought-leave it all to Me.” Never forget: As we are facing uncertain times on a global level- that our Great and Mighty God is bigger than the problems we are facing. No matter what our worries are for today- place them in God’s hands- and leave them with Him! Don’t worry God’s got this!! Have a blessed day.

2020-03-22

Power of the Holy Spirit

The Spirit of truth...dwells with you and will be in you (jhn14:17). The story has been told about a little boy who had trouble understanding the power of the Holy Spirit. The little boy asked, “How can I believe in the Holy Spirit when I have never seen Him?” The little boy’s father, who was an electrician said, “I’ll show you how.” The father took his son to a power plant and begun showing his son the many generators . Telling his son, “This is where the power comes from to run our AC’s, TV’s, and lights. We can’t see the power, but it’s in the generators and in the power lines.” Then the father asked his son, “Do you believe in electricity?” ‘Yes, I believe in electricity”, said the son. ‘Yes, you do, but you don’t believe in it because you see it. You believe in it because you can see what it does”, said the father. ‘We can believe in the Holy Spirit not because you see Him, but we are able to see the power in the lives of those who have surrendered to the cause of Christ. For those of us who are surrender to Christ, we possess power greater than any generator ever made by man. So in the coming days, weeks and months, possess the power of the Holy Spirit. Pray for our families, and nation that we will come out on the other side of this troubling times, stronger in our faith and in our Great God. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-20

Responsibility

The Lord, our God we will serve and His voice will we obey (jos24:24). The story has been told of a wealthy father who refused to give his son a video gaming system because the son’s report card reflected bad grades. The son also refused to do any of this chores. It would not have been wise for the father to give into the son’s request. The son was showing his ungreatfullness and disobedience toward the father. The father wasn’t being cruel or even stingy; the father knew the son needed to learn some responsibility. Like the father, God wants us to learn responsibility too. We are saved by grace, but we should be responsible disciples learning to follow Christ. The Bible tells us, “If you do not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you”(1san12:15). If we want God to hear and answer our prayers - we must surrender our stubbornness and selfishness to Christ and then humbly seek His will. Obedience is the master key to effective prayer. Are we seeking His will? Have a blessed day.

2020-03-18

You are my home

You are my hope O Lord God; You are my trust from my youth (psm71:5). Have you ever wondered “Where did we come from?” “Why are we here?” “Where are we going?” If we look at modern science they are constantly looking to give us these answers. But still come up empty and far from the truth. They have lots of theories but no true answers. But the cross of Christ stands against our worlds confusion, it is our beacon of hope in the midst of this worlds darkness and doubt. Christ is our bridge between God and us. It is in Him that we find the answers to life’s basic questions. We find our identity- forgiven sinners who now belong to God. Our destiny- a glorious eternity with God in Heaven. Our true purpose- to love and serve God. “The future is bright as the promises of God”(A.Judson). If we are saved, this is as bad as things will get. If we are not saved, this is the best as it will be. Our eternal home awaits us in Heaven. A place where there is no sin, no suffering, no sickness, no conflicts, no tragedies, no grief, no sorrow, no Devil, no flesh, no evil world systems- only the Lamb of God seated on His throne. What great hope we have in our future... no matter what science tell us, our hope is in Jesus! Have a blessed day.

2020-03-16

Heart

Man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart (1sam16:17). Science tells us that our hearts beat 100,000 times in a twenty-four hour period. That’s 4000 beats per hour! It take four minutes for our blood to be pumped through our whole body. It’s no wonder our doctors tell us to take care of our hearts. But when the word of God refers to the hearts, it referring to our inner most being. The heart is where our emotions lie, it is where we decide our actions (good or bad). It is where we believe or doubt things. Our heart symbolizes our moral, spiritual and intellectual center. It is where our conscience and life dwell. Most of all God knows our heart (and why not He created it!). He knows when it is troubled and full of sorrow. He knows when we are happy and full of joy. He know the troubles we face each day- the big and the small. When we open our hearts to Christ- it is open to His truth and He gives us a new heart. Our hearts become sensitive to the things of God. We sense His presence, we sense His leading us, and we sense His unconditional love. Don’t be afraid to take your heart to God... He know what weighs heavy on it. So, share share the good and not so good with him. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-15

Storm of judgement

You have cast all my sin behind Your back (isa38:17). We will never understand the length of God’s love for us in Christ until we understand that we shall never have to stand before the judgement of God for our sins. ALL of our sins- without exception- were placed on Christ. He took the judgement and paid the cost we could not. Christ accomplished all the work for our redemption. My husband and I love to take cruises. While on a cruise in the southern Atlantic Ocean, the skies were blackened with bad storms clouds. Thinking that we were in for a rough day at sea, someone told me that we had come through those blackened cloud during the early morning. We who are called Christians, have already come through the storm of judgement. It took place on the cross of Christ. We should not be bound by our guilt or fear any longer, but we are to realize that sin’s penalty has been paid by Christ-completely and fully. It was future joy that strengthened Christ to endure the cross. If we are redeemed, the best is yet to come. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-12

The scenes of Satan

Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves (mt7:17). Can you recognize a false prophet? Most can not... you know someone who claims to speak on God’s behalf, but in reality really doesn’t. Satan’s underlying principle and tactics are the same for everyone- deception. And no Christian no matter how spiritual is beyond the seductive assault of our crafty and clever adversary. Satan begun his work in the garden of Eden and hasn’t stopped since. He does not build a church and call it the First Church of Satan... no he’s much too clever for that. But he does infiltrate our theological seminaries and pulpits- he invades our churches under the cover of an orthodox vocabulary- but instead empties our sacred terms of their true biblical meaning or denies them of their truths. God has given us a weapon- an offensive weapon- the Bible. It will help us to discern between truth and deception. But it only helps us when we take time to read and understand Satan’s tactics and what God’s promises are. It is important to understand why we believe what we believe. Knowing God’s Word is our first step in combating Satan. Are you ready to stand against the scenes of Satan? Have a blessed day.

2020-03-11

God size hole

He who wins souls is wise (pro11:30). We are told that our world is starving... And we have the bread of life to share. Most people are so busy trying to fill the god size whole in their lives that they ignore Christ or even refuse Him. But we are called to share Christ to a world that is spiritually dying. We have water to give to our thirsty world- the Living Water (Jesus Christ). Every day people are trying to quench their thirsty souls with every new fad and falling short of the satisfaction that only comes from Christ. But we have to keep reminding them what the Bible tells us, “Ho! Everyone who thirst must come to the waters”(isa55:1). Sometimes we must carry the water to those who cannot or will not come. We must preserve, never giving up. Our Lord never gave up even to the end, “He became obedient to the point of death”(phil2:8). All around the world people are hungry and thirsting for God, even if they do not realize it. We are called to point them to Christ (no excuses). He alone can fill the god size hole in their lives. Will we be willing to share Christ to a world that is starving and thirsty? Have a blessed day.

2020-03-10

The Lord’s return

The day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night (1thess5:2). As we read the headlines and watch the news each day- do we wonder and worry what tomorrow will bring? Do we worry of how much worse will things get? The Bible tells us in the midst of persecution, confusion, wars, and rumors of wars, we are to comfort one another with the knowledge that one day maybe soon Jesus will return in all His glory and majesty. When we go to bed at night do we wonder if Jesus will return before we wake? Do we ever wonder as we see the sunrise in the eastern sky- will today be the day of His return? Today might not be the day- but one day maybe soon He will return. So until that day, remember God is still on His throne and working behind the scenes... and we should be working too. Our world is full of turmoil and hopelessness- so in the meantime we should be praying and doing what we can to bring Christ’s love and saving knowledge to the lost. Jesus tells us; “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven”(mt5:16). Are we doing that? Have a blessed day.

2020-03-09

Air

My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God (psm84:2). One of my favorite ways to exercise (not that I have many) is to swim laps and to workout in the swimming pool. Sometimes I try to teach myself to hold my breath longer and to expand my lungs. Here’s the one thing I have noticed when you try and hold your breath for a long time... The longer you try and hold your breath, the more your body wants air (no brainer). The longer you are under water the more everything in you wants to break the surface and breath a fresh gulp of air! The long you remain underwater the more you are consumed with the thoughts of getting to the surface for air, until your body and mind can no longer stand it... it only wants air! You body’s only desire was air. This is what our verse is talking about, crying out for and longing for God. Our longing for God is to feel unfulfilled without Him. We have a desperate need for Him. We need Him more than the air we breath. We long to be filled with His presence- more than our desire to fill our lungs with air. “My heart (soul) and my flesh (body) cry out for the living God.” Paraphrased “My soul and body cries out for the living God.” Our God wants us to be satisfied with nothing less than Him. And we are never more satisfied than when we know Him. Are you crying out to know God as much as your body desires air to breath? Have a blessed day.

2020-03-08

Future

The Lord reigns forever (psm146:10). It is hard to only read the headlines of today, when we do we can become very pessimist about the future. This can put us in a position in which we can forget some very important things about God and our future. Our future belongs to God. He alone controls it and nothing that happens to us surprises Him (it may rock us but not Him). He alone controls society and our future. Even when our future seems dark and uncertain, we can turn to Him and trust it to Him. Never forget, God is with those who are trusting Christ, first as Savior and second as Lord. He is the One who helps us each day. It has been said, “Peace rules the day when Christ rules the mind”(unkn). The apostle Paul said,”I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”(phil4:13). So, no matter what we may be facing, no matter how dark or uncertain they may seem and no matter what the headline say, our help is born and nurtured in Christ our breeder and feeder of our faith. So look beyond the headlines of today to the One who truly controls our future. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-05

Love

He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins (1jhn4:10). The word “love” is used to mean many different things. I can say, I love the new house we just built or that I love my new car or that I love going on cruises or that I love Kentucky Fried Chicken. I can also say that I love a certain t.v. show or that I love my husband. But I will tell you one thing... I love my husband a whole lot more and differently then I love Kentucky Fried Chicken. Sometimes I think we misuse or overuse the word love. We use the word love way too quickly, or when we cannot find another word to describe our feelings. The greatest love of all, is God’s love for us... stronger then we will ever know or understand. God’s love showed itself in action. Someone has once said, “Love talked about is easily ignored, but loved demonstrated is irresistible.” In other words if my husband only told me that he loved me, but never showed it in action... I don’t think we would had ever gotten married. The Bible tells us, “God demonstrated His own love toward us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us”(rms5:8). God showed His real love for us even before we knew Him. And He keeps showing us every day. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-04

Clouds

Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds (psm36:5). My uncle Charles use to have a house high in the mountains of North Carolina. I remember sitting out on the porch that looked down on the valley below. The morning sun was shinning and I could look down on the clouds below us. From where I sat on the porch the clouds looked like normal clouds, but when we went down the mountain to go to the store it had been raining in the valley all morning. When we face the trials and troubles of life we are like the valley covered in rain clouds. Clouds of depression, clouds of failure, loss of a job, loss of a loved one, but above the clouds the sun is shining. Our lives consist of seasons and our seasons of clouds are never permanent. A few things in life are as bad as they seem at first. When we face life’s trials and troubles we may feel as if our world is falling apart around us- but remember in time we will emerge from this season and enter another. So, if all you are seeing right now are the clouds, remember above the clouds the sun is shining. Time... the mover of clouds and healer of wounds. Have a blessed day.

2020-03-03

Slow to anger

The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy (psm145:8). Have you even thought, what if God was only a God of love, never judging evil or even tried to stop it? Evil people would carry out every evil plan without fear of consequences. No worry of someone stopping them. We would be a lot worse off then we are right now. Now let’s flip this, what if God was only a God of judgment, who punished us ever time we did something wrong? I don’t think we would stand a chance- we sin in action and thoughts everyday. But for those of us who have been parents/ grandparents- we know that discipline has to be given, for our children own good. So, in a far greater way God disciples us, not because He hates us, but because He loves us and doesn’t want us to continue down our path of destruction. Like being a parent we protect our children from those things that can or will harm them. So, our wonderful loving God protects us too. The Bible tells us, “Do not... be discouraged when we are rebuked by Him; for whom the Lord loves He chastens”(heb12;5-6). Do you feel as if God is judging you for your sin? If so, it’s because He loves you too much to keep letting you continue in it... Have a blessed day.

2020-03-02

God’s love for us

No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly (psm84:11). Do you ever think God’s help is only needed in hospital rooms or when we are in the midst of life’s troubles and sorrows? It foolish for us to think this way... yes God is there is with us during those times. But He is also with us as we watch our child and grandchildren grow. The Bible tells us Jesus went to the wedding in Cana as well as to Mary and Martha’s home after the death of His friend Lazarus. Jesus cried with those who cried and rejoiced with those who rejoiced. It has been said that,”There are just as many stars at noon as there are at midnight, only we don’t see them because of the suns glare.” I don’t think we will completely understand life’s trials and troubles until we get to Heaven. Then we can look back and be absolutely amazed at how God took care of us and even blessed us in the darkest times in our life. So never forget (as some of us do): God is with us not just in the good times of our life- but always- even when we don’t see or feel His presence. What a blessing it is to remember this... Have a blessed day.

2020-03-01

Do unto others

Master, give your bondservant what is just and fair, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven (col4:1). The apostle Paul is addressing us in how we are to supervise: if we are employed or are a supervisor or in leadership, we are to do “what is right and fair” to those who work with us. Paul also reminds us that we too, have a Master to which we will give an account of all that we have done (good and bad). Sometimes it isn’t clear what is right and fair, because even when we do what is right and fair, people still react poorly even though things are right and fair (sometimes they demand more). We know how difficult it can be to deal with people (ask anyone who work in the people serve industry and they can tell you how tough it is). But we should still remember to seek God’s wisdom as we carry out each day-no matter who or what we are facing. So, this basic principle holds true for all who call yourself a Christian. Jesus phrased it another was to His disciples: “In everything, do to others what you would have them do to you”(mt7:12). This is a golden rule in which we are to live our lives... Do unto others! Are you live and reacting to others as Jesus has set as an example to us? I hope so... Have a blessed day.

2020-02-29

Wasted time

Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress (1tim4:15). Let’s do something that you may have never done before. Take a pen and paper and make a list of all the things you do on an average twenty-four hour time period: eating, sleeping, driving, working, exercise, shopping, t.v., internet etc... Beside each task put how much time you spend doing them. Now compare how much time you spend doing things that are not important (spiritual or morally wrong). Maybe you have noticed you have spent a lot of down time watching t.v. or on the internet? Now don’t get me wrong, everyone need time to relax, and not all entertainment is bad for us. But how much time do we simply waste during our day? Now look at your list again, how much time is spent with God or in His Word? Remember: Satan does not need us to fall into gross sin in order to defeat us, just a large dose of laziness will get the job done... The Bible tells us, “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart”(jer15:16). Read God’s Word (even a small amount) revives our soul. It brings incredible joy-which will boast our energy. So in other words- there is power and strength in the word of God. Someone once told me we make time for what is important to us. How important is your time spent with God? Have a blessed day.

2020-02-28

Garbage in... garage out!

Be transformed by the renewing of your mind (rms12:2). The Bible teaches that we are to bring our minds under the control of Christ. But have you ever wondered why? I think the answer is easy... the way we act is determined by how we think. You know the old saying, garbage in- garbage out! God cannot change our lives without first changing our minds. Our mind cannot live in a vacuum, it will be filled with either good or evil. It will contain either Christ or carnality. So, what makes the difference? What we allow to enter our minds. We must not allow negativity, be mindful of the things we allow ourselves to watch on tv or social media, be aware of the types of books we read and the things we dwell. But it’s more than putting bad thoughts and stuff that influence us out of our minds. Negative through and actions need to be replaced with good thoughts and actions. These good thought and action are shaped by God, His Word, by prayers, worship and by fellowship with other Christians. It take deliberate actions to turn away from the evil thoughts and actions of this world. But with Christ’s help this can be done. Remember: Garbage in- garbage out... what thoughts and actions are driving you? Have a blessed day.

2020-02-25

Can God be trusted?

God is not a man, that should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind (num23:19). Can we truly trust the promises of God? I mean can we trust Him to be with us in every situation? The Bible tells us, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you”(heb13:5). Can this really be true? When life’s trials and troubles seem to be closing in on us and we don’t seem to see a way out or we feel as if we have been abandoned, can we trust God to keep His promises? The answer is YES! God unlike us, does not lie or does not change His mind. But what if He did lie and change His mind like us? Then we have no reason to depend on Him and His word can’t be trusted. But thank goodness that God doesn’t lie or change His mind, because He is perfect, holy and He loves us not matter how broken and damaged we might be or feel. Maybe you are in the midst of life’s trials and troubles and feel as if things are closing in on you... Remember: God knows what you are going through and He can be trusted to be with you. “God has never promised to solve our problems. He has not promised to answer all our questions. He HAS promised to go with us”(E.Elliott). Be still and know that God is with you. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-24

Shaping

You also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house(1pt2:5). The story has been told of a man who lost his job, his fortune, his wife and home. But he held fast to his faith in God. The man, like Job in the Old Testament did not abandoned his faith, no matter what was happening to him. But like Job, the man couldn’t help but wonder why? The story goes on to say how the man stopped one day to watch some men doing stone work on a huge church. One of the workmen was chiseling a triangle piece of stone. The man asked, “What are you going to do with that triangle piece of stone?” The workman replied, “See that little opening way up there near the spire? Well, I’m shaping this down here so it will fit up there.” Tears filled the man’s eyes as he walked away, it seems that God had spoken through the workman to explain his ordeal. “I am shaping you down here so you’ll fit in up here.” Maybe you feel like the man, you are going through some tough times and you don’t understand why? Maybe, just maybe God is shaping you down here to fit in up there? We may never understand why things happen the way they do. But trust the workman to know how he is shaping you. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-23

God size hole

If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor (jhn12:26). It has been said that people today seek adventure and excitement and they want something or someone to believe in. Maybe you feel this way? Looking for a flag or cause to follow. You know something we can feel good about. Without a purpose greater than ourselves many end up living an empty hearted and meaningless life. Following Christ is the only cause big enough to satisfy the yearning in our hearts. God has place a hole in our hearts that only He can fill. Many have tried anything and everything to fill His hole but nothing works. Christ invites us to follow Him. And being a follower of Christ is the most thrilling cause we will ever find. Think about it our God the creator of the universe (and us) wants us to become partners in the work He is doing to reclaim the lost and broken. Using the gifts God has given us, we can be a godly example to someone who is discouraged and beaten down by the cruelty of this world. Look for those that need you be encouraged, who may be seeking more to life than just surviving each day. Be the light in this dark world. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-21

Worrying …

Let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God... will guard your hearts and minds(phil4:6-7). It has been said that nothing distresses the mind and wears down our nerves like borrowed troubles. “Worry is an old man with a bent head carrying a load of feathers he thinks is lead”(unknown). What do we worry about? Money, family, work, health or maybe growing old? Worrying about even a small thing can turn it into something huge. Worrying about things that may never happen can crush our spirits. Jesus promised us:”Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid (jhn14:27). Rules to help us not to worry: “1. Don’t allow yourself to complain (not even about the weather). 2. Never imagine yourself in circumstances in which you are not. 3. Never compare your own fortune with that of another. 4. Never allow yourself to dwell on the wish that this or that would have been, or were otherwise than it is. God loves you better and more wisely than you love yourself. 5. Never dwell on tomorrow. Remember that it is God’s not yours”(E.B.Pusey). So, whatever we are worrying about right now, turn it over to God trusting Him to take care of it. Let His peace replace your worry. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-17

Praying for those who have hurt you

Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice (eph4:31). Have you ever had someone that you just didn’t like, and whatever that person did continued to hurt you? I did,and whatever that person did opened my emotional wounds from my past. This went on for years... but one day I decided to turn this hurt, anger and bitterness over to Christ. This person had lived in my mind too long rent free! It was time to move on. I’ll be the first to tell you it wasn’t easy. But I did tun it over to Christ, and He began to heal me of my past hurts and disappointments caused by this person. The Bible tells us and Jesus commands us, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you”(mt5:44). I wish I could say this was easy at first but it was not... but today after God has healed me from the hurt and pain of this person, I can now pray for him and ask for blessing for this person. This doesn’t happen all at once, it is a process and it does take time. But with the healing help of Christ it can be done. And once done it will bring freedom to your soul, it did for mine. Allow Christ to show you how to pray for those who have hurt you. And one day you will be able to truly pray for those who have persecuted you. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-16

Everything

You alone know the hearts of all men (1kng8:39). I wonder do the word in today’s verse scare you? They might or they might not- but the truth of it is they should. We forget that God knows everything about us EVERYTHING. He knows our deepest darkest thoughts and motives. We do a great job at hiding things from others; we might even hide them from ourselves. But we can not hide it from God. So this shouldn’t surprise us; God knows everything about us. The Bible tells, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to him we must give account”(heb4:13). Can we think back over the last twenty-four hours, think of all the thoughts you didn’t want someone (not even those who know you the best). God heard them and He knows all about them. But you know what? In spite of everything God knows about us-He still loves us. He loves us even when our thoughts are not on Him. He loves us even when our are on Him. But bottom line is we should be thanking God for His grace and thank Him that in spite of everything He knows about us, in Christ,”He has forgiven (us) all trespasses”(col2:13). Have a blessed day.

2020-02-15

Focus

Let this mind be in you that was also in Jesus Christ (phil2:5). As Christians we are not to conformed to this world. Our world is full of advertisements, conversations and philosophies that want nothing to do with God. Secular society is telling us to live for ourselves, putting everything ahead of God. The world’s stinking thinking contaminates our thoughts. How do we get past the shouts of the world to hear the voice of God? Focus... whatever captures our focus has mastered us. Godly focus is the elimination of the unimportant and the subtraction of the nonessentials. “Our outlook maybe dark, but if we know the secret of the up-look... we shall find our God is able to deliver”(C.Stern). Focusing on God is the key to mastering our focus. Whatever breaks our focus has mastered us. Life... illnesses, kids, work, school, spouses, death, finances all pull at us in a hundred different directions- all in an effort to divert out thinking, but we alone are responsible for what we pay attention to the most. “What I see affects what I think. What I think affects how I feel. How I fell affects what I do”(H.Vaughan). What are we focused on, the things of this world or the things of God? Remember to focus... Have a blessed day.

2020-02-14

Talking to God

Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness and for his wonderful works to the children of men (psm107:8). When my children were very young and first started talking, they did not talk in long elaborate sentences- in fact it was just the opposite. I was excited to just hear those first few words. The same can be said about us as we begin to pray to God. He is our Heavenly Father and we are His children and He longs to hear from us. Just as a parent is excited to hear those first words from our children so God longs to hear those first prayers from us. Don’t worry that our prayers are not long or eloquent, the important thing is that we start. God delight in our simplest prayers- the ones that truly express our feeling and the desires of our heart. No one starts out knowing exactly what to say. In fact we may even feel uncomfortable at first. But the important thing is that we start. A comfortable place to begin might be to start by thanking God for His goodness and grace. By thanking Him for the many blessings He has bestowed on us. Then confess our sins to Him and ask for His forgiveness. Then bring any prayer requests to Him that we might have. “In the day when I cried thou answered me, and strengthened me with strength in my soul”(psm138:3). “At the profoundest depth in life men talk not about God, but with Him”(D.E.Trueblood). Have a blessed day.

2020-02-13

Ten Commandments

No one will be declared righteous in (God’s) sight by obeying the law; rather, through the law become conscious of sin (rms3:20). Have you ever wondered why God gave us the Ten Commandments, if He already knew we would break them? The Bible tells us that the Ten Commandments were given to us in order to show us that we are sinful and weak and that we need God’s mercy. It is important that we understand the connection between the giving of the Commandments and the building of the sacrificial alter. The Commandments were given first, but we are told that law and the alter go together (and they do). If we think about it, the law reveals that we are sinners in need of forgiveness. It show our path to forgiveness is through a sacrifice- the Old Testament required an animal sacrifice, the New Testament Christ became our sacrifice. The Ten Commandments revealed to us that we are morally dirty and in need of cleaning. The cleaning we need is found at the cross of Christ. The best thing we can do is to follow every instruction that God has given us. Walk in His light and obey every command. Following God’s commands will fortify (build up) our souls . Our obedience builds our faith, and our successes in the faith realm will build up our spiritual man. The Ten Commandments point to our need of Christ’s mercy and forgiveness. I hope you see this connection? Have a blessed day.

2020-02-12

Count it all joy...

Whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy (jms1:2). It has been said that before the power of the atom was discovered, scientists had to figure out a way to smash it. Because the secret to the atoms immense power is found in it being crushed. Some of the most godly people I have ever met are those who have suffered greatly. They could have been bitter or resentful. But they chose not to, because they knew Christ walked with them through their hardships. We know life is not fare and sometimes even cruel. But we do not find our joy in our circumstances. Our joy comes from somewhere deep in our souls. Our joy comes from a heart that trust in Christ no matter what life hands us. “Suffering and success go together. If we are succeeding without suffering, it is because others before us have suffered; if we are suffering without succeeding it is that others after us may succeed”(E.Judson). When we feel like the stresses and strains of life are crushing us we are to “count it all joy”(easy saying hard doing). But when it does, turn to Christ asking Him to show His joy in the suffering of this life. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-11

On our knees is power

The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much (jms5:16). We are told that the history of mankind was changed time and time again by faithful prayer of a few men. Revival was brought to both England and America but a faithful few. But how does this apply to us today? Life is not for the faint hearted that’s for sure, but does God really hear our prayers even when I’m not that faithful? I think so... if we are keenly aware of our weaknesses, we are in the perfect position to cry out to God. We may be weak in body, in our emotional reserves, in faith and mind-but don’t despair. The troubles and trials that we are experiencing today may be the very tools God is using to fashion us for better things tomorrow (even if we don’t see or understand). “God does not mock His children with a night that has no ending; and to every man who stands resolute while the darkness last, there comes at length the vindication of faith and the break of day”(J.S.Stewart). Now I know the when we are in the thick of things it is difficult to see or even know God is with us. But He is, “A Christian should never let adversity get him down... except on his knees”(M.Nicholson). Are we too busy blocking the next punch to get on our knees to pray? For some we are too busy, and that exactly where Satan wants you! The Bible tells us, “The low valley may well be the prelude to walking in high places with hind’s feet”(hab3:19). On our knees is the stronger position a Christian can be. Be encouraged for, “He give the power to the faint hearted; and to them that have no might He increaseth strength”(isa40:29). Have a blessed day.

2020-02-09

Friends sharing burdens

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born in adversity (pro17:17). It has been said that the Lord gaves us three things to help us when our souls are in need of restoring: nature, music and friends. When life knocks us down with troubles, trials and difficulties, one of the most beneficial things we have is company- the right kind of company. Someone much wiser than me commented, “A friend is one that multiplies our joys and divides our grief.” This is just what we need when we are facing the struggles of life... joy increasing, misery decreasing friends. Our true friends are those who will help us laugh when we are weighted down with difficulties and are willing to help us carry our burdens when we can’t carry them ourselves. The laughter our friends bring can ease our burdens, even if it only temporary. Our moral support system is ill-replaceable in times of difficulties. Don’t face these things alone, open up to a close friend let them help in your season of distress. True friends are the ones who will love us regardless of anything we may say or do under the weight of the troubles and trials of life. Our true friends want to help, they are there to add energy to us not to add more drain to our burdens. Is there someone who needs help you through the difficulties they may be facing today? If so- share with them, if not pray that God will send you someone who you can share your burdens with. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-08

Have a party when trials come our way

As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him; for he know how we are formed (psm103:1-2). We live in a world full of discouragement, heartache, hopelessness and despair. Our problems can and will wear us down physically, mentally and emotionally- it can even erode our faith. I know some of us do not want to hear this but... our trials are not the real problem, it’s the way we see our problems. Ultimately what happens to us is incidental compared to the way we view adversity. God knows all too well what we have faced and what we will face in the future. The Bible tells us, “My brethren count it all joy when we fall into various temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith workers patience (jms1:2-3). So in other words... when we are overwhelmed with the hardships and troubles in our lives- stop and through a party! For most of us this is the last thing we want to do. But the reason we should celebrate our difficulties is because of its benefits. And our first benefit is that we grow patience. Our character is more important than our circumstances, and with divine perspective; we can be empowered to face life’s trials and troubles. “When a train goes through a tunnel and it gets dark, you don’t throw away your ticket and jump off. You set still and trust the engineer”(C.Tenboom). Are we trusting our great engineer? Have a blessed day.

2020-02-07

The son's of light

You, brethren are not in the darkness... You are all sons of light (1thes5:4-5). When we except Jesus as our Savior and Lord we no longer see life as the world see it, blurred, confusing and as a meaningless mass- we see the world as something planned and having purpose. Our eye have been opened to spiritual truths. Jesus tells us in the book of Luke, that He came to earth to preach,”recovery of sight to the blind”(4:18). From birth we are all spiritually blind to the things of God, because of sin (mine, yours, everyone’s). But when we become a follow of Christ something amazing happens, the Spirit of God help us see our sin and our need for help. The Spirit reveals the truth of Jesus to us: “I am the light of the world. He who follows me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life”(jhn8:12). The Bible calls us who are in Christ,”children of light and children of the day”(1thess5:5), because it pleased God to share His mysteries and secrets with us. And because we no longer walk in darkness- we understand where we came from, we know why we are here, and we have confidence that we know where we will go when our time here is done. Be of great courage in a world filled with darkness, walk as a child of the light- for we are! Have a blessed day.

2020-02-05

Balance

For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things holding promise for both the present life and life to come (1tim4:8). We all know that having a health body is important. Eating right, exercise and the correct amount of sleep lead to a longer healthier life. And it’s important to take care of ourselves (the older I get the more I realize it). The Bible tell us, “Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit... Therefore honor God with all your body(1cor6:19-20). Watch tv or look in any magazine and we will see how much our society is obsessed with the physical appearance of our bodies. So much so that we judge each other based on this one aspect. I think for most we can easily put too much attention on how we are taking care of our physical body that we completely forget about our spiritual body. Our verse today tells us that training the physical body has some value (not all value), but the spiritual value is good for now and in the future. We have spent most of our time trying to be physically fit that we have become spiritually anemic. Are we spiritually endemic? I pray not. Don’t get me wrong being physically fit is a must... but we should have a balance between the spiritual and the physical. Some day our lives will be over, no matter how well we took care of our physical body. Will we look back with regret because we spend more time and energy on the physical and have starved our souls? Find that balance. Have a blessed day.

2020-02-04

Reaction to the Gospel

If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first (jhn15:18). I’ve been told and have observed myself that there are usually three reactions to the message of the gospel. The first of those who will deny the gospel is true. They will believe anything but the gospel. They will scoff at it and say how stupid and ridiculous it is to talk about sin and the need to be forgiven. Some will even deny the gospel truth out of fear for what others may think. The second set of people are those who will delay any decisions of the gospel. “I’ll think about it and maybe make a commitment to follow Jesus some other time.” The problem with this excuse is that is that they may never hear the gospel again or they may never get another tomorrow. And the last set of people are those who make the decision to follow Christ even if they are the minority. Knowing that they may lose friendships or even more. It’s tough being a Christian in our world. Society will tell you that anything else is better than being a Christian. Society will tell us that being a Christian is for the weak. But this is not the truth. We need to be willing to take on Jesus’ unpopularity and the scorn that will come with it. Like our verse tells us the world first hated Him- we are never promised being a Christian would be easy... but it definitely will be worth the scorn. So what group do you fall in? My hope is the latter... Have a blessed day.

2020-02-03

Being filled and keep being filled

Be filled with the Spirit (eph5:18). What does it mean to be filled with the Spirit? First understand this is a command- a requirement not a suggestion. If we look at the original Greek language it gives us the idea of being constantly being filled. We are not to be filled once and for all, like a bucket might be filled and dumped out. But rather to be filled continuously. Maybe a better translation could be.... “Be filled and keep on being filled.” An example can be given of a old farmhouse. In the corner is a sink; above the sink is a pipe that has a continuous stream of water provided to it from a outside spring. The water by running continuously keeps the sink filled with good clean water. So, in a similar way we are not to let ourselves be filled and emptied of the Spirit (you know a leaky bucket) only to be filled and refilled. But instead the Sprit should constantly flow within us (like the spring feed sink water). It has been said,”The Spirit’s fullness is not the reward of faithfulness, but God’s gift for our defeat”(R.Hession). So, in the midst of life’s troubles and trials are we being filled and drained or like the sink-are we being filled and keep on being filled? Have a blessed day.

2020-02-02

What does Jesus look like?

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him (isa53:2). Have you every wondered what Jesus looked like? I mean, did He have dark hair, maybe He was light colored, was He taller then most, what color was His eyes? But the answer to all of theses question are not given in the Bible. Other than the vague description given in Isaiah 53, we have not idea what Jesus looked like. There have been artist who have tried to give us some example... but most only give us what they think He might have looked like. If a European artist was drawing Him, only the look of a European was given. If any American artist was doing a drawing only the look of the American is given. I think there is probably a very good reason why the Bible doesn’t tell us any of Christ’s physical attributes... God knew that if we had a accurate physical description, we would worship His physical attributes, instead of worshipping Jesus for Himself. In a society that is all about the physical looks of others, I can see us very easily doing just that, but what’s even worse this could fall into a type of idolatry. Those of us who are children of God, we will one day know just what Christ looks like. The Bible tells us that, “we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is”(1jhn3:2). Are you looking for the day day when we will meet our Savior and Lord face to face? I know I am and it doesn’t matter to me what He looks like! Have a blessed day.

2020-02-01

Unseen presence

The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God (rms8:16). There is a story given of a little boy who was out flying a kite. It was a beautiful day to fly a kite. The wind was just right and there were large puffy while clouds floating in the sky. The kite sailed up and up till it was hidden by a cloud. The young boy was asked, “What are you doing?” The young boy replied, “I’m flying my kite.” The man replied, “Flying a kite, how can you be sure? You can’t even see the kite.” “No, I can’t see the kite, but every little bit I feel a tug, so I’m sure it’s still there” replied the little boy. Has someone you know or maybe you have doubt about who and what God really is? Maybe you are walking a walk that you would have never imagined for yourself? Not sure if God hears your cries for help- leading or guidance. But remember the little boy and his kite. Even thought the kite was a obscured by the clouds- he knew his kite was still there tugging on the string. God can be like that to us too- obscured by out troubles and trials . But we can feel Him pulling on our hearts strings reminding us that He is still there even if we can not see Him. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-31

Knowing God

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you (psm32:8). Have you ever wondered what God would have you do as you faced the trials and troubles of life? Maybe you are wondering right now? But how do we discover what God would have us to do? First we must seek God. To follow God we must first know Him. Not to just know about Him, but to know Him. We find God in the pages of our Bible. There we discover that God loves us and wants the best for us. He does not want us to wander this life aimlessly. Common sense will tell us if we do not know God we will not follow Him. It has been said, “One finds constantly that 90 percent of our trials and sorrows are made up of anticipated or imaginary evils, which exist only in our disordered unbelieving minds (unknown). As a child of God we understand that God wants the best for us. Obeying God is not easy, but is always worthwhile. The best thing we can do today is follow every instruction that God brings to our attention. Walk in the light you have and obey every command. Go all in when it comes to complying with God’s will. But if you are not sure what to do next, do all that you know to do and the next step will become evident. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-29

Gods love no matter what

Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will receive me (psm138:7). Have you ever felt like you have let God down? I know I have... There are times when in the midst of the troubles and trials of life, that I have not reacted the way I should have. In fact I have acted like anything but a Christian. Maybe you have too? It is in those time that the battle in my mind and Satan will beat me up because of falling short of the calling that God has placed on my life. But God does not want us to think this way. I have to remind myself (every day, hour, minute) that God loves me no matter what I have done. It has been said, “A well trained memory is one that permits us to forget everything that isn’t worth remembering.” In other words,” whatever captures our focus has mastered us.” What are you dwelling on? The positive or the negative things in life. Do you let the negative actions of yourself or others to get the best of you? Or are you grateful and thankful that God loves us. Think about it God loves us... He loves us even when we are not walking with Him. He loves us even if we decide not to take a shower everyday, or if we say a cuss word. If you are a child of God, He loves us no matter what we do. Life can be difficult and I think, when we get bogged down by the trials of life we forget this important fact. So... where is your focus? On the trials of life that distract us from the love of God, or are you focused on God and the love He has for us no matter what? Have a blessed day.

2020-01-28

Always

I am with you always, to the very end of the age (mtt28:20). In our verse today, Christ gives a very important promise. It was first given to His disciples, but it is also promised to us. His promise is inclusive... no situation is excluded, nor is any challenge omitted. So no matter what we are facing, car accident, cancer scare, family problems, lose of a job.... nothing is excluded. The word always in our verse can be paraphrased as, “I am with you all the days, all day long (always).” It has been said, “ To be filled with God is a great thing; to be filled with the fullness of God is still greater; but to be filled with ALL the fullness of God is the greatest of all” (W.Bramwell). So what are the things that are pressing in on you? Christ’s presence is not only with us every day, but every minute of every day! His promise is for us all the time, not just when we feel like it. We need to cultivate a sense of Christ’s presence every day, every hour, and every moment. We do this as we pray, as we worship and as we listen to Him speak to us through the Bible. Are you cultivating the presence of Christ in your life? Have a blessed day.

2020-01-27

God’s transcending peace

Present your request to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Jesus Christ (phil4:6-7). Anxiety drains us. Depression depletes us. How can we find peace? God doesn’t necessarily removes our problems in life when we become followers of Jesus. Our peace is not the subtraction of problems, but rather it is the additional power (Christ) to meet our problems. God has promises to be with us, and to encourage us in the midst of life’s struggles and troubles. Jesus told His disciples, “Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid”(jhn14:27). But again how do we experience peace? The first thing to remember is that we are not alone (as Satan would have you think). Also remember, Christ loves us and nothing we may face will surprise Him (if may shock us, but not Him). Our peace is also possible because the Holy Spirit will give us patience and even joy in the midst of life’s trial and troubles. Peace is also possible because we know our problems are only for a short time, because some day they will come to an end. “Peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but the presence of God”(A.Maclaren). So when faced with the testing and trials of life, which would you rather do.... face them without God? Or face them with the knowledge that we do not face them alone? The choice is yours. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-26

Spending time with God

In your presence is fullness of joy (psm16:11). So, have you ever witnesses a couple in love? They communicate there love for each other without even saying a word. Maybe you have been lucky enough to have experienced it yourself? You know, every touch, every simple smile, every glance shows their for love for each other. Those who are deeply in love find absolute bliss simply being in each others presence. In the same way as a Christian, simply being in the presence of God should bring us joy. We experience this when God speaks to us from His Word. It happens when we pray, when we meditate on His goodness, delight in the beauty of creation, when we rejoice in the life of a new born baby or even in the surprise of a unexpected blessing. The Bible tells us, “Be still and know that I am God”(psm46:10). I think for most of us the hardest part of spending time with God is learning to be still. We are pulled in so many directions... work, school, kids, family, and not to mention the struggles of life. I was once told that, “Whatever we find important to us, we will make time for it.” The question should be asked, “How much time are you making for God?” ‘How important is spending time with God to us?” The Bible tells us that someday, maybe soon we will be in the presence of God forever, “God Himself will be with them”(rev21:3). We shouldn’t wait till we get to Heaven to experience this, we can do this everyday. We should be taking time from our busy day to spend time in God presence, this might be the only time that we may find the joy we are seeking? Have a blessed day.

2020-01-25

Filled with all joy

May the God of hope fill you with all joy (rms15:13). How many times have we found what we were looking for in life (great job, marriage, family, vacation), only to realize it didn’t bring us the satisfaction we thought it would. This is life’s ultimate frustration. How many times in life have we worn ourselves out trying to achieve something only to stop because it took to much energy? The Bible tells us- “neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength”(neh8:10). It has been said that nobody lives on planet earth without losing some thing or some body. It doesn’t matter if its the loss of a loved one or the loss of a job, home or family. The trials and troubles of life will sap our strength. So when suffering a trial or hardship we would do go to remember this: First-Be patient with yourself. If you have lost a person, ability or relationship give yourself time to grieve through it. Second- Be honest with yourself. If you have failed, then take your sins and plunge them beneath the blood of Jesus. Never forget that whatever the Light reveals the Blood can heal. Personal revival is always the gateway to joy. Always search for the truth in life, don’t let anything or anyone keep you from Jesus. He alone is “the way and the truth and the life”(jhn14:16). Have a blessed day.

2020-01-24

The cure for our ills

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation (2cor5:17). The question has been asked or maybe you have wondered yourself, ”Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could find a medicine that would absolutely cure human natures weaknesses and failures?” We are plagued by conflicts, discontent and unhappiness. But what if we could find a cure for these ills? How do you think others will react to this discovery? God has given us a cure for these thing- and they are found in our relationship with Christ. Though Christ our sins are forgiven. He forgives us when we fall short of the calling He has placed before us. Only He can change our lives and quicken our spirits. All of our sins, our confusions, and disillusionments can (if we let Him) be replaced by His righteousness, His joy and His hope. Christ can give us peace that does not rely on our outward circumstances. Christ provided this cure some two thousand years ago with His death and resurrection. So can we say with confidence that Christ has created in us a new creation? I sure hope so. Have you allowed Him to change our hearts and minds- creating in us a new way of thinking and reacting to the circumstances around us? If not ... why? He promises to give us these thing and more... all we have to do is allow Him to do so. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-21

Loving one another

All man will know you are my disciples, if you love one another (jhn13:35). If other’s are to know that we are desciples of Christ, how do we put this into actions? One good way for other to know, is to serve one another. I don’t mean be a slave to others, I mean minister to then. Life has a way of giving us trial and troubles. We recieve strength when we strengthen other. This is never more true than when we are suffering adversities. It has been said that we can curtail our own sorrows by ministering to others in need. We should be patient with each other, especially when they are facing difficult times. Remember just because the rest of the world has gone back to a normal life doesn’t mean that the person we are ministering to can or is ready to go back to a normal life. Another way we can minister to others is to not judge them. Now I know for some this is a difficult thing to do. But judgement is the Lord’s job not ours. We may be called to rebuke or reprove them in love, but we are not to judge them. Our compassion (love) for others is having the desire and abilities to help other’s who are facing hardships. Our ministering to other is therepeutic to us and helpful to others. When we do not know what we can or cant do for someone’s needs... pray for them. It is a great privilege and honor to come to the throne of God on the behalf of someone who can or will not pray for themselves. So the question has to be asked... Do others know you are a disciple of Christ? Have a blessed day.

2020-01-20

The Bible message

They asked each other,”Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with is on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?(lk24:32). The question has been asked,”How can a book written by so many people written over hundreds of years have anything to say to us today? Or is the Bible’s message honestly relevant to us today? I think the answer is “yes”- because there are millions of believers all around the world that will attest to that fact. I think if anything that it is probably more relevant today than ever before. And the reason is that we are seeing the storm clouds gathering and the events that are taking place that will bring about the second coming of Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us, “Our salvation is nearer than when we first believed”(rms13:11). But I also think the Bible is more up to date for another reason: only the Bible can and will answer our deepest questions of the human heart- the basic questions that have plagued us since the beginning of creation. “Who am I? Why am I here? Where did I come from? Where will I go when I die? And How should I live my life?” I believe that only the Bible gives us the correct answers to these questions and here’s why: Because it is God’s Word given by Him to guide us and point us to Christ. Now knowing this why, wouldn’t we want the Bible to be the foundation of our lives? “The Bible that is falling apart usually belongs to someone who’s life isn’t”(V.Havner). Have a blessed day.

2020-01-19

Praying for ourselves

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above (jms1:17). When we read or say the Lord’s Prayer, we come to these words:”Give us this day our daily bread”(mt6:11). In this verse we are reminded to ask God daily for our provisions (everything we need for that day). God is our giver of every blessing. The Bible tells us: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and comes from the Father of lights”(jms1:17). But there are some of us that may ask, “Why should I pray for everything, I can take care of myself.” When we understand that weakness is a call to pray, we understand that our hardships do not make us frail; they only reveal how truly frail we are. we can ask others to pray for us but praying for ourselves is very important. There may be some intercessory who will pray for us, share in our burdens, but chances are they will not cry out to the Throne of God with the fervency and intensity that we can or will do. In other words... no one is going to pray for us the way we can pray for ourselves! Remember: if it were not for God’s love and grace for us, we would not have anything (even for those who never pray this still applies). When we pray everyday it reminds us that we should be trusting God for everything. “Strength is what we need when we are weak, and strength is what we get when we pray”(unkn). Are you praying daily for God’s provisions? Have a bless day.

2020-01-18

What would Jesus do?

We are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ (1jhn5:20). In the 1990’s there was a book written, “In His Steps”, but Charles E. Sheldon. The story tells of a pastor who challenges his congregation to pledge for one year not to do anything without first asking the question, “What would Jesus do?” The book goes on to tell of how this challenge was kindled when a shabby looking man who was mourning the recent lose of his wife who had died in poverty. The man stumbled into the wealthy church and addressed it congregation. The man said, “I have heard some people singing at the church prayer meeting the other night. ‘All for Jesus!/All for Jesus!/ All my being’s ransomed power;/All my thoughts and word and doings,/ All my days and all my hours.’ The man kept wondering as he sat on the steps outside the church just what they meant by this song. He said, It seems to me that there’s a awful lot of trouble in this world that somehow wouldn’t exist if all the people who sang such songs went and lived them out.” What is someone posed that same question to us, I wonder what our response would be. Can it be said that we live with the thoughts of “What would Jesus do?” Can it be said that we practice any day or every day? I dare you to take this challenge... “What would Jesus do?” Have a blessed day.

2020-01-17

What are we searching for?

I denied myself nothing... Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless (eccl2:10-11). King Solomon knew he could find happiness, after all he had everything... wealth, fame, pleasures, power, lavish homes, a reputation for wisdom- you name it he had it! He of course was the richest man who had ever lived. But yet after having everything and anything he could want or need he concluded that his life was empty and without meaning. Solomon’s life long search for happiness and peace had failed him. His soul was still empty. Are we like King Solomon- looking for something- anything to bring peace and happiness to our empty hearts? We know the anxieties of life can drain us. We know depression can deplete us. But the peace of God can strengthens. The Bible tells us: Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your prayer be made known unto God (phil4:6). God gives us the recipe for peace, it can be found in our prayer, petition and thankfulness we give toHim. Please don’t be like King Solomon- chasing after every whine to find peace and happiness only to find in the end that lasting and sustaining peace can be found only in God. Start today to build your God given peace. God wants to show us a better way to live our lives in a world filled with distractions everywhere we turn. Turn to God and let Him fill the God size hole in your life- the hole that only He can fill. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-13

Seek the Kingdom of God

Seek first the kingdom of God (mt6:33). It has been said that, “The secret of happiness is not to do what you like to do, but to learn to like what you have to do.” This is not the mentality of todays society, we think happiness comes from someone or something. But happiness is not an end in itself; it is the byproduct of something far greater. Jesus told His disciples: “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” The “things” that Christ spoke of were the basic needs in life: food, drink, clothing and shelter. But today we don’t chase after just the basic things in life. we want the highest paying jobs, the biggest homes. Most of us have more clothes we will ever need (me included). We have more food at our disposal at any given time. We want the most exotic vacations... all in the pursuit of happiness. Yet we are miserable people, because we chase after things. We have taken the basic things in life and made them our chief desires. But Christ tells us NOT to make these things our goal, but to “seek...the kingdom.” Seeking the kingdom is much more then reading the Bible or going to church. It is the pursuit of a relationship with Christ. Any relationships that are worth having takes a desire to know someone. My prayer for us is that we have a desire to know Christ. So... the secret to happiness:”Seek the kingdom of God.” Have a blessed day.

2020-01-11

Elimination

Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the ways of sinners, nor sitteth In the seat of the scornful (psm1:1). The voices in our lives affect the choices in our live, so “Take heed to what you hear”(mk4:24). Be extremely careful to whose counsel we listen to. Giving an ear to small-minded people who gossip and slander good men, will contaminate us. The opinions of men are infallible, and the voices we entertain are strictly our choices... so make good choices. Just because someone is addicted to drama does not mean we are obligated to attend their performances. Naysayers and faultfinders will steal your life from you. When life sends trials and troubles our way- we need eliminate wrong people, wrong speaking and wrong thinking, because most of the time our nerves are frazzled. The last thing we need are critical people draining our emotional reserve. The Bible tells us, “Mark them which causes division and offensive... and avoid them”(rms16:17). The peace we long for cannot mutually exist with the turmoil that accompanies critics and cynics. The law of association means we will become like the crowd we hang around. The law of elimination is the subtraction of wrong influences. Eliminating these will go along way in restoring peace in our lives. “Smart people speak from experience; smarter people from experience don’t speak”(unkn). Have a blessed day.

2020-01-09

Being transformed

We... are being transformed into (Christ’s) likeness with ever increasing glory (2cor3:18). God doesn’t want us to just feel His presence. He wants to change our lives. He wants to take away our self-centeredness and make us more like Him. But how can this be done? Easy, God changes us as we read His Word, the Bible, as we listen to its truths and allow it to shape our lives. “Great peace have they which love the law; and nothing shall offend them”(psm119:165). It has been said, “Peace rules the day when Christ rules the mind”(unknown). God breathed the breath of life into Adam. The breath of God, His inspired Words resuscitate with us as well. Help is born and nurtured through the Word. “The Scripture is both the breeder and feeder of Grace”(T.Watson). I urge all of us to become active in a local church where God’s Word is taught and lived. When we belong to a vibrant faith community, we are not alone as we face the trials of life. The difficult times in our life calls for us to have reinforcements, not to isolate ourselves. The reinforcements we need can be found in the local church. God’s people can help us regain and strengthen our footing and our proper perspective as we face life’s struggles. So while the close of our holiday season has ended is there someone who needs some encouragement this new year? Be willing to encourage someone who may be facing difficult times. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-05

Forgiven Transgressions

I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions (isa43:25). The apostle Peter was beaming with self-confidence confirming his love and devotion for Christ at the Last Supper. But it took him less than 24 hours before he denied Christ three times. The Bible tells us that Christ prayed for Peter before he would deny Him. Christ does the same for us. All of our sins and failures are covered by the blood of the cross. But as much as this should bring us comfort to know that we are forgiven of our sins. I think we should find a greater comfort in knowing that Christ is praying for us. Christ is our advocator, pleading our case before the Father. As bad as we think our failures are- they could always be worse. Christ is looking out for us and He knows just what we are facing. The Bible tells us that Jesus was tempted in these very things while one earth, and so He is able to sympathize with your weakness (heb4:15). Christ having faced the same issues, He knows how to intercede for us. Christ was tempted but never sinned (unlike us). The knowledge that Christ is praying for us should warm our battle-scarred hearts. “Anxiety never strengthens us for tomorrow; it only weakens us for today”(unkn). Knowing that Christ forgives us gives us strength to face the future. Remember: Jesus is praying for us and we will make it through whatever this life throws at us. Our fears and anxieties begin to lose their grip as our hearts are strengthened by the prayers of Christ. Have a blessed day.

2020-01-03

Reinforcements

We... are being transformed into (Christ’s) likeness with ever increasing glory (2cor3:18). God doesn’t want us to just feel His presence. He wants to change our lives. He wants to take away our self-centeredness and make us more like Him. But how can this be done? Easy, God changes us as we read His Word, the Bible, as we listen to its truths and allow it to shape our lives. “Great peace have they which love the law; and nothing shall offend them”(psm119:165). It has been said, “Peace rules the day when Christ rules the mind”(unknown). God breathed the breath of life into Adam. The breath of God, His inspired Words resuscitate with us as well. Help is born and nurtured through the Word. “The Scripture is both the breeder and feeder of Grace”(T.Watson). I urge all of us to become active in a local church where God’s Word is taught and lived. When we belong to a vibrant faith community, we are not alone as we face the trials of life. The difficult times in our life calls for us to have reinforcements, not to isolate ourselves. The reinforcements we need can be found in the local church. God’s people can help us regain and strengthen our footing and our proper perspective as we face life’s struggles. So while we end this holiday season is there someone who needs some encouragement? Are we allowing God to use His Words to shape our lives? Have a blessed day.

2020-01-02

New Year

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be open to you (lk11:9). Have you ever been asked or maybe you have asked your self; “How can you know that you will go to Heaven when you die?” The best way I can explain it is; Suppose you have a friend and he offers you a gift. What would you do? Would you refuse it, until you have paid for it? Then this is no longer a gift. Maybe you would decline it because you felt you deserve it? No, to both questions! If your friend wants you to have it and it is already paid for it; all you have to do is accept it. So... in a far greater way this is what Jesus has done for us. His death on the cross is the price He paid for our salvation- completely and fully. It is a free gift to us- all we have to do is receive it. The Bible tells us, “For the wages of sin is death, the gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord”(rms6:23). So, the question has to be asked, “Have you received this gift?” You can it’s easier than you think- confess to God your sins and your need for Christ, and then ask Him to come into your life. Salvation is God’s gift to us... but only if we receive it. What a wonderful way to start the New Year! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-31

New Year’s Eve...

There shall be no night there... And they shall reign forever and ever (rev22:5). Have you ever been asked if you are a pessimist or an optimist? But what is a pessimist or an optimist? Webster tells us that a pessimist is someone who see the worst in things (gloom and doom). While an optimist is someone who sees and feels hope for the future. As Christians we should be the ever vigilant optimist. Why? Because we have read the last chapter of the Bible and in the end God wins ....so we win! The Bible tells about our Heavenly home where our builder and make is God. It tells how we who are redeemed will be superior to the angels. It also tells us of “a river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb”(rev22:1). The Bible also tells us that, “there shall be no light there: They need no lamps nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever.” As we look back over this past year for some of us, life may have handed us some tough blows. But for the rest of us it may have been the best year ever. No matter the case... remember the promise of God: We cannot live in the past, we must, “be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near”(jms5:8). As we look to the New Year my prayer is that you remember, that as Christians in the end we win! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-29

Our Advocate

I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions (isa43:25). The apostle Peter was beaming with self-confidence confirming his love and devotion for Christ at the Last Supper. But it took him less than 24 hours before he denied Christ three times. The Bible tells us that Christ prayed for Peter before he would deny Him. Christ does the same for us. All of our sins and failures are covered by the blood of the cross. But as much as this should bring us comfort to know that we are forgiven of our sins. I think we should find a greater comfort in knowing that Christ is praying for us. Christ is our advocator, pleading our case before the Father. As bad as we think our failures are- they could always be worse. Christ is looking out for us and He knows just what we are facing. The Bible tells us that Jesus was tempted in these very things while one earth, and so He is able to sympathize with your weakness (heb4:15). Christ having faced the same issues, He knows how to intercede for us. Christ was tempted but never sinned (unlike us). The knowledge that Christ is praying for us should warm our battle-scarred hearts. “Anxiety never strengthens us for tomorrow; it only weakens us for today”(unkn). Knowing that Christ forgives us gives us strength to face the future. Remember: Jesus is praying for us and we will make it through whatever this life throws at us. Our fears and anxieties begin to lose their grip as our hearts are strengthened by the prayers of Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-12-27

Being content

I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation (phil4:12). The story is told of a man who had two friends. The first man was vey wealth and successful, he was the envy of all his friend and business associates. But one day while visiting the wealthy man, he broke down in tears and confessed that he was miserable inside. His wealth could not fill the emptiness in his heart. Then the man went to see his second friend, who lived just a few miles away from the wealthy man. His second friend lived in a small humble home. It had almost no worldly possessions. But the second man told of all the things he was doing for Christ and how Christ had filled his life with meaning. I am convinced that the second man was the richer of the two men. The second man had learned to be thankful for everything (not just the good in our lives, but the sad or unhappy things we encounter). A thankful spirit makes all the difference. I wonder how many of us can say we are thankful for all the things we encounter in our lives? When life throws us a curve ball, how thankful are we then? Do we retreat or can we stand firm? Our thankfulness does help us through the tough times and it also makes the happy times a whole lot sweeter. So, how thankful are we as we approach this holiday season? Have a blessed day.

2019-12-25

Room for Christ

She brought forth her firstborn Son.. and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn (lk2:7). No room for Jesus ? No room for the King of kings? But room for other things... shopping, cooking, baking, and traveling this holiday season. But no room for Christ. I don’t think things have changed much since the birth of Christ. God is still on the fringes of our lies. We fit Him in when its convenient or when life throws us a curve ball and our lives are falling apart. We become irritated when He makes demands on us. We think God should stay in the box we have created for Him only coming up when we tell Him. Today we are told that Christmas is anything but the babe in the manger... it is everything from the next greatest or best electronic device or that our children will never be happy if they don’t have this or that toy. But this is not Christmas... Christmas is knowing the birth of the babe in the manger (God sent to us). If we did not have the babe in the manger we would not have the Christ on the cross (buying back us for God). Few know the true Christmas story, but even fewer know of the man on the cross. Yes, life is busy and the holiday season is even busier. But my prayer for us this Christmas is that we slow down, read about the birth of Christ (Luke2). Then we take the time to read of His sacrifice for us (Matthew26). May God’s grace and mercy and peace be with you. And I pray you make room for Him in your heart. Merry Christmas! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-23

VIP

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind (rms12:2). We are told we can retrain our way of thinking by using acronyms. A good example of this is the acronym for “VIP”- it stands for Very Important Person. We can also use this acronym of VIP in a different form as a Christian character test. The “VIP” acronym can be used as, Vision, Integrity, Presence. The V stands for Vision- the Bible tells us, “where there is no vision the people perish”(pro29:18). This means as a Christian we see what can be done, what should be done and how to get things done. The highest vision we can have is to glorify God by discovering God’s will for our lives and doing it. The I stands for Integrity- this means that we are the same on the inside as we appear to be on the outside. There is no discrepancy between what we say and what we do- we are not just talking the talk, we are actually walking the walk. The P stands for Presence- the presence of Christ in our lives. Without Him we are doomed. In Him we find out who we are, why we are here, and where we are going. Only Christ can and will give us the power to fulfill our God given vision. Are we a real VIP for Christ- a person of Vision, Integrity, and Presence? Have a blessed day.

2019-12-22

What can separate us from the love of God?

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?(rms8:35). The trials and troubles we face in life are not our real problem. It is the way we see our problems and trials that is. What happens to us is incidental compared to the way we view our adversity. In the midst of life’s trial and troubles Christ tell us, “Do not be afraid”(mt28:10). Our character is more important than our circumstances, and with perspective, we are empowered to welcome life’s testings, trials, and tribulations, rather then dread them like most of us do. It has been said, “The school of suffering graduates rare scholars”(unkwn ). What we learn (applied knowledge) from our troubles and trials is invaluable and the ability to lend a hand to someone in difficulty is priceless. Our suffering may include seasons of silence, darkness, depression, failure, trouble, loss, weakness and sorrow. So, it is imperative to remember that all of life consist of seasons and they are never permanent. Few things in life are as bad as they seem, we may feel as if our world’s falling apart. But in time we will emerge from this season and enter into another. The cross of Christ shows the depth of His power, so what can separate us from the love of Christ? The answer... NOTHING! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-19

Choosing to get back up

I am with you always, even to the end of the age(mt28:20). It has been said that when David Livingstone returned to his homeland in Scotland after many years as a missionary and African explorer. He gave a speech to students and factuality of Glasgow University, his body worn and weary the result of many fevers he had during his time spent in Africa, his left arm useless from the attack of a lion. He said, “Shall I tell you what sustained me during the hardships and loneliness of my exile? It was Christ’s promise,’Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’” I do not know what tomorrow may bring or what trials may come our way, but God does provide a way to escape (not run away)(1cor10:13). Some of our trials may resolve quickly, while others may linger- but the good news is that even the longest seasons of hardship are never permanent. Our God delights to make His strength made known in our times of weakness. His is a life giving and peace restoring touch. Remember: the sun has a sinking spell every night, but it rises up every morning. We may be down, but we do not have to stay down. We may have fallen, but we will rise again. Everybody stumbles but God will lift us up. So, no matter what trials we may face, we do not face them alone. God has promised that,”Lo, I am with you ALWAYS.” He never leaves us, He is with us every step of the way. Now that is a promise worth clinging too!! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-18

Fear and doubt

For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light (psm36:9). It has been said (and noticed) that sadly many people in society today get their happiness only from outward circumstances. As long as things are going untroubled they are happy. But let the hard trials of life interrupt them and things change dramatically. But this is not the way God wants us to live. The Bible tells us,”Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known”(phil4:6). We are not to be obsessed with any negativity and fear. When the trials of life hit us we begin to be fearful and doubt the promises of God. Gods peace surpasses our human comprehension. It is super naturally conveyed from the person of God (Christ) to His praying children. It is the stress of our storms in life that makes us realize the worth of the anchor (Christ) that we have. When the storms of this life test our ability to float and not to surrcume to the tempest that may roar around us, what could be sweeter than to know the anchor of the heavenly peace in the mist of our storms? It is profound and beyond explanation when the peace of God quiets our anxious hearts.”You have made us for Yourself, O Lord; and our heart is restless until it rests in You”(Augustine). Where does your happiness lie, in the circusmstances of life or in the resting peace that can only be given by trusting God? Have a blessed day.

2019-12-16

Purpose...

Teach me Your way, O Lord, And lead me in a smooth path (psm27:11). You may or may not know or even care, but God has a plan (a purpose )for each one of us. It is sad to think of how many people who are completely unaware of this fact. But their lack of awareness doesn’t change this fact, that God put each of us here at this time and this place for a purpose. We were not place here by accident (even if your parents didn’t plan for you- God did!). God has placed you here for a reason: so that we may come to know Him in a real and personal way, and then live in a way that brings glory to His name. One of our greatest discovery as a Christian (besides Christ our Savior) is to know God and be His friend forever. We may never do great or amazing things by society’s standard, but by kingdom standards we may be spiritual giants. We may not know the specific plan God has for each of us- but that doesn’t mean God doesn’t have a plan- it means we have not discovered it yet. Please don’t wander through your life without knowing your purpose or direction, pray and ask God to show you the plans He has for your life. You will be glad you did. Have a blessed day.

2019-12-15

Clouds

They looked... and behold, the glory of the Lord appeared in the cloud (ex16:10). Did you know, we are told by science, that if we did not have clouds, that we would not be shielded from our own burning sun. Spend anytime time at the beach and see how quickly we get burnt without any sunscreen. Also without clouds we would not have our lavish sunrises and sunsets. We would not have our much needed rain that brings about our beautiful landscapes. The same can be said about the cloud that appear in our lives. When the storms of life set upon us (if not now- one day soon they will), we usually get discouraged, thinking that God is not there in our storm. But this is not true, behind every cloud the sun is shining and God is there. We never know, He maybe using our clouds to bring about and unexpected blessing. “Be still, sad heart,and cease refining; behind the cloud is the sun still shining”(Longfellow). While the Jewish Nation wandered in the wilderness God declared, “Behold, I come to you in the thick cloud”(ex19:9). Everyone experiences clouds in their lives, some are slight and easily pass, while yet others are dark and frightening and last for a while. But no matter what type of cloud we maybe facing- we do not face it alone. Just ask Christ to help us to look beyond the clouds we are facing, looking to see His glory and His plans for our lives. Have a blessed day.

2019-12-14

Adam or Christ?

God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them(2cor5:19). All mankind is represented by one of two heads: Adam or Christ. This means we are either linked to Adam or we are united with Christ. If we identify with Adam our existence is the consequence because of his existence. He lost his life (separation from God). We are the result of Adam and Eve having children. For if they did not have any child, we would not be here. So if we are linked with Adam, we are literally “in Adam.” When Adam sinned we became united with him. As Adam died because of his transgressions he passed this on to every generation after him. But our good news is, that if we have been saved, we are in union with Christ. When He died, we died (rms6:6,8). When He rose again, we will rise with Him (rms6:4-11). All who are born again by God are “made alive” in Christ. Christ is in us and we are in Christ. This is not just our Positional Truth, this is our “Actual Truth.” So every demand made on us, is in fact a demand made on Christ. When we face an uncertain future because of the adversities of this life, we can find refuge “in Christ.” Remembering that our position will give us understanding that Christ will see us through our difficulties. Knowing that Christis not only “with us” but He is also “in us”, and this should bring us great comfort and joy as we face the uncertain days ahead of us. Have a blessed day.

2019-12-12

The Good Shepherd

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters, He restores my soul (pam23:1-3). No other psalm is better known or probably loved more than Psalm 23. It is used in most funerals today, it is usually printed on the memorial cards. This psalm probably got it origins from king David’s time spent as a shepherd. But I think sometimes it is so familiar at the funerals of our loved one that we forget its many riches... These verses tell us that God is like a shepherd- He guides us, He keeps us out of harms way, He keeps us safe from our enemies, and He gives us all we need to sustain our Ives. Even though we have a great tendency to wander, and sometimes even get into trouble (just like the one lost sheep in Jesus’ parables in Luke 15:1-7). He is still there to lead us to where there is safety. So Jesus, our Good Shepherd “makes” us lie down in green pastures and He “leads” us to still waters. The very things we may never can or will do on our own. The question has to be asked, “What kind of sheep are we?” Are we the rebellious type, prone to wander, resisting the gentle prodding of our Good Shepherd? Or are we the type that gratefully submits to the Good Shepherd’s wisdom and ways? Jesus tells us that, I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me”(jhn10:14). So, are we truly known by the Good Shepherd? Have a blessed day.

2019-12-10

Be joyful in hope

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer (rms12:12). Hardships can sap us of our strength . It can influence not only us, but those around us too. When our bodies are tired, it impacts our spirits. Emotional, mental and physical depletion will affect our resilience. It has been said,”You are no more spiritual than you are rested.” It is difficult to sense the presence of God when we are wiped out. Our depletion can lead to depression, and our depression can trigger depravity. When our resilience is waning inappropriate things (sin) pour into our minds like a torrent. These thought war against our souls. Our frayed nerves can exacerbate our wrong actions, and poor responses. Whenever we have a setback, we need a comeback. But how do we accomplish this? We start by stop looking back. We need to start looking to the future. View our time of pain as a bridge, not a barrier to our future. Use our energy to create new roads ahead of us instead of trying to repair the old roads behind us. Put things right as possible- then look ahead. We should pray, plan and prepare for tomorrow and our emotional wellbeing will improve. “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of throne of God”(heb12:12). It was Christ’s future joy that strengthen Him. We who are redeemed, the best is yet to come. A bright tomorrow is promised- Heaven awaits us! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-09

Does God really care?

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble (2cor1:3-4). Have you ever wondered if God honestly cares about what we are going through (I know I have)? When we lose a job, or illness strikes, or the loss of a friend or family member, does He truly care? The overwhelming answer is YES! Life does have a way of chewing us up and spitting us back out, before we even understand what is happening. The apostle Paul reminds us that he wasn’t exempt from life’s trials. “We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life”(2cor1:8). The test and trials of life require extra grace. And often God doesn’t remove us from our trial (like I sometimes wish), but He gets us through them. There is a requirement for our enabling grace and it is humility. The Bible tells us, Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you up”(jms4:6). We need more than our own willpower to get us through the tough times; we need God’s power. We need more than fancy or motivational slogans; we need more empowerment. Maybe you are at your wits end, exhausted and your resources are depleted; you don’t need philosophy, theories or explanations; you (we) need Jesus’ touch. But why does God allow trial and troubles to come to us? One reason and it is quite simple, so that we can, ”comfort those in any trouble.” When we don’t feel like it, we are to thank God for His compassion, and then ask Him to teach us how to comfort others in their trials- and then do it! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-09

Does God really care?

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble (2cor1:3-4). Have you ever wondered if God honestly cares about what we are going through (I know I have)? When we lose a job, or illness strikes, or the loss of a friend or family member, does He truly care? The overwhelming answer is YES! Life does have a way of chewing us up and spitting us back out, before we even understand what is happening. The apostle Paul reminds us that he wasn’t exempt from life’s trials. “We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life”(2cor1:8). The test and trials of life require extra grace. And often God doesn’t remove us from our trial (like I sometimes wish), but He gets us through them. There is a requirement for our enabling grace and it is humility. The Bible tells us, Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you up”(jms4:6). We need more than our own willpower to get us through the tough times; we need God’s power. We need more than fancy or motivational slogans; we need more empowerment. Maybe you are at your wits end, exhausted and your resources are depleted; you don’t need philosophy, theories or explanations; you (we) need Jesus’ touch. But why does God allow trial and troubles to come to us? One reason and it is quite simple, so that we can, ”comfort those in any trouble.” When we don’t feel like it, we are to thank God for His compassion, and then ask Him to teach us how to comfort others in their trials- and then do it! Have a blessed day.

2019-12-08

God’s promise

Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return to you at the appointed time next year and Sarah will have a son (gen18:14). We have heard the story of Abraham and Sarah. God had promised them a child (a son). Maybe you can relate, waiting on God to answer a long awaited prayer request? We, much like Abraham and Sarah get impatient waiting for God’s answer. So like Abraham and Sarah we try taking thing upons ourselves to help God out. They did just that when Ishmael was born. Now that Sarah was in her nineties, she was to have her son. Ninety... well past her prime! I cant imagine having another child and I’m only in my fifties. I sometimes think that God’s sense of humor is warped, using Sarah in her nineties. Fulfilling a promise He made to Abraham, to become the father of a great nation (and the ancestor of Jesus) . But I also think that God choose them at such a old age just to remind us of His great Sovereignty (His willingness to answer a promise). So what prayers are you waiting for God to answer? Please don’t give up hope, God is in the business of answering our prayers. Remember Abraham and Sarah as you wait. Nothing was too hard for God then and nothing is too hard for God now. If it were then why should we pray at all? Our God is still on His throne, and He always at work all around us. That doesn’t mean God will answer our prayers the way we want Him too- but never doubt His power and His love for us. Have a blessed day.

2019-12-06

Excuses

Another disciple said to him, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus told him. “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead!”(Mat8:21-22). When we first read these words, they seem a bit harsh. But if we look just a bit deeper, we can begin to understand why Jesus said what He said. So first if the man’s father had indeed died, it wouldn’t be wrong to take care of the arrangements. But it was more likely that the man’s father was very much alive. So, what the man was really saying was “someday in the future” (maybe months or even years), he would be willing to follow Christ. In the Jewish culture (in those days) it was customary to bury the dead mere hours after the person had passed. So if the mans father was dying or already dead the the son would not be far away from home listening to Jesus. When Jesus told the man to follow Him, He was saying that nothing (absolutely nothing) should stand in our way of following Christ. This man was using the excuse of the eventual death of his father as the reason why he couldn’t follow Christ. Our excuses are like- its just not confident right now or I have some things that I need to straighten out before I can follow Christ. Many of us are willing to have Jesus to be part of our lives- just as long as it doesn’t cost us anything. Christ is calling us to follow Him without excuses , no matter the cost. What keeps us from following Christ? Have a blessed day.

2019-12-05

Our time of departure

He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that day (1tim1:12). The Bible speaks of death as a departure. The Bible tells us that the apostle Paul approached his death without fear (as some might); no he announced (with a note of triumph), “The time of departure is at hand”(2tim4:6). We learn the word “departure” in Paul’s time means, to pull up anchor and set sail.” Everything that happens to us prior to our death all in preparation for that journey. It has been said that, peace is not the subtraction of life’s problems (including death). But rather, it is the addition of power to meet those problems. We are to stop wishing for a life without complications and struggles. “Peace does not dwell in the outward things, but within the soul. We may preserve it in the midst of the bitterest of pain, if our will remains firm and submissive. Peace brings this life’s springs from acquiescence even in disagreeable things, not in an exception from the bearing of them”(Francois Felelon). So, its not the absent of difficulties we long for most, but tranquility in our hearts. Such is the hope of every believing Christian even as we stand at the grave of a loved one who has departed to be with the Lord. We may say goodbye for a short time, until the new day dawns and we are together with the Lord. Have a blessed day.

2019-12-03

Fuller lives

Show me O Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life (psm39:4). Someone has asked, “What has been the biggest surprise of life?” And some may answer, “The brevity of life.” And this maybe true, the older we get the more we realize it. The things that have happened to us thirty years ago seem like it was yesterday. But when we look to the future we realize just how short life is. And if you have felt the pain and loss of a loved one, you truly see the brevity of life. A wise person once said, if there is a great trial in our lives, do not own it as defeat, but continue by faith to claim the victory in Him who is able to make you more than a conqueror. And a glorious triumph will soon become apparent. Let us learn that, in all the hard places of life that our Father brings us into He is making opportunities for us to exercise such faith in Him as well As to bring about blessed results and great glory to His name. So, please don’t waste your life on things that have no eternal value. Draw closer to Christ and make each day count for Him. Look at each day as a gift. The Bible teaches us , “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom”(psm90:12). Life is short, but so much fuller when we live it for Christ. Have a a blessed day.

2019-12-02

Train a child

Train a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it (prov22:6). In our society today parents are failing to teach their children right from wrong. Boundaries (right from wrong) begin in the home. If our children don’t learn boundaries at home they will end up without any moral or spiritual anchors. Our children need to know that their parents/grandparents care enough about them to be strict. When we as parents/grandparents fail to discipline (not abuse) our children we are actually sending a signal to our children that we don’t care. The Bible tells us, “he who loves (his son) disciplines him promptly”(prov13:24). The Bible also tells us to train our children/grandchildren in the ways of God, “precept upon precept, line upon line... here a little, there a little”(isa28:10). This means we start teaching our children while they are young about morals (right from wrong)and about God’s love for them. Do not wait until they are teenagers and think they will want to hear anything you so or do, by then it is too late. Our ACTIONS as parents/grandparents are much more important then what we say, because our children acquire their parents/grandparents characteritics and habits from us! So, what are we teaching our children/grandchildren? Have a blessed day.

2019-12-01

Motives versus Service

Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart (pms37:4). How do we know the difference between our own desires and God’s will for us? Well, lets first know that our desires will not be granted as if God is like a genie in a bottle. But I do have to be honest, it isn’t always easy. Let me use the example of someone who loves to sing (I love to sing- but its best that others don’t hear it). They may be good at it, they my enjoy it, so naturally they want to be around others who like to sing as well. So, would it be wrong if they joined the church choir? We have to ask, would they be joining because they enjoy singing, or maybe because they like showing off their talent, or maybe they are seeking the praise of others? Or maybe, just maybe they are sincerely seeking to serve God in this small way? We may not have this problem, but i think wherever we serve (it could be teaching Sunday school, working with the youth or in children’s church, in the nursery or Helping the elderly) everything we do in our service boils down to the motives of our heart (why we do what we do), which should always be in check. Its not wrong to enjoy something as long as its good and honorable. God may not have gifted you in certain areas of service, but wherever He has placed you, it is imperative that we are committing our motives and service to Christ, even in the things that we enjoy doing the most. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-29

God’s bird’s eye view

Great is the Lord, and mighty is His powers; His understanding is infinite (pam147:5). The story is told of a man who was standing at the top of a mountain. The road below him was full of bends and curves, making it difficult for drivers below to see the road ahead. The man seen two cars headed towards each other, each driver could not see the other. Just then a third car pulled up and begun to pass one of the cars, even though there was not enough room to do so. The man begun to scream and shout at the cars below, but of course none of the drivers could hear him. Unfortunately, this became a fatal car accident. If we think about it, this is how God see us in His omniscience. He sees what is happening right now in our lives, He knows where we were, and what lies ahead of us. He sees when we foolishly think we can get away With breaking His moral laws or worse when we act out of our own sinful pride, lust or anger. So like the man on the mountain God shouts His warnings to us, but we are way too busy or too stubborn to listen. God sees our whole picture, and He is keenly aware of what will hurt or destroy us. Please don’t ever think that our way is better than His. Please listen when God directs you. Who know the road that lies ahead may be very dangerous for you... Have a blessed day.

2019-11-28

Happy Thanksgiving!

It is good to give thanks to the Lord (psm92:1). We are told in our county’s history that our Pilgrim Fathers landed at Plymouth in 1620. We are also told that their first winter there was very harsh, there were seven times more graves dug, then homes that were built. Their seed brought from England did not yield any harvest. And a ship that was suppose to bring relief on brought thirty-five more mouths to feed. But they were able to live on provisions of fish, wild birds, rabbits and deer. They were given some corn from the Indians who lived near. But our modren history books do not tell of the great sense of greatfullness and the thankfulness that was shared by all. It has been said that William Brewster said as he blessed his scanty meal of oysters and water, ”for the abundance of the sea and the treasures hid in the sand.” We know nothing of this type of of thankfulness. My prayer this Thanksgiving is that we have this type of thankfulness and gratefulness. We are blessed beyond measure in compared to those that have gone before us. Let the time that we spend with family and friend be filled with this sense of thankfulness of those we are surrounded by. But more that that, let us remember our Lord Jesus who has given to us all that we have. Remember to celebrate all that was sacrificed that we may celebrate. Happy Thanksgiving!

2019-11-27

The cost of sin

What shall we day then? Shall we go on shining so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?(rms6:1-2). Some may think, why try to be good, because no matter what we do, we know God will forgive us. For all we have to do is ask and God will forgive us- wont He? So why even bother? But this type of thinking we are told in the Bible is a mockery of God’s grace and forgiveness. It also mock the sacrifice of the death of Christ on the cross. Jesus died not to just forgive us of our sins- He died to free us of our sins (giving us the desire not to sin). We are told in the Bible, “Sin shall not be your master”(rms6:14). So, when we keep sinning without turning or even trying to restrain it- our sin has become our master and it is important to remember this: Sin is the enemy of God- but sin is Satan’s friend and campion and his weapon used against us. You know- it was only one cuse word, or one sly comment, or just a little white lie... our sin does not have to be a major sin to turn us away from God... it always starts with something small. But God is so serious about our sin that He sent His One and only Son to pay the penalty for it. So pease don’t ever take sin lightly. It cost Jesus everything. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-25

Greatest decision ever made

Unless one is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God (jhn3:3). It has been said, just as surely as God implants the cell of life in the tiny seed that produces the mighty oak... just as surely as He installs the heartbeat in the life of the tiny infant yet unborn... as surely as He puts motion into the planet, the stars and the Heavenly bodies- so He implants His divine life into the hearts of those who earnestly seek Him through Christ, by faith. Faith is the greatest empowering force known too man and it can conquer any obstacle. The things that have been accomplished “by faith” are astonishing. Historically the Bible tells us, the sun stood still, the Heavens withheld rain, a Man walked on water, sicknesses were cured, dead were raised, and a host of other miracles took place because of faith. Faith is not carma or wishful thinking like some would have you to believe. Faith is believing in Someone unseen. So it is this faith that draws us to Christ. But unless we are born again we will not enter the Kingdom of God. Born again is simply asking Christ to come into the very soul of you (heart). Allowing Him by faith to lead and direct your life daily. For some this comes as a great struggle, for others this is the easiest decision ever made. But for all who except Christ this has been the greatest decision ever made! Have you made that decision for Christ? Have a blessed day.

2019-11-24

More then a good teacher!

Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father (jhn14:9). Many people today will tell you that they respect the moral teachings of Jesus. Even the Jewish cultures will say that Jesus was a good teacher. But that where things stop. And it because of the claim that Jesus made of Himself. The most shocking, offensive, startling for most to understand or believe: Is that Christ was God in human flesh. Jesus wasn’t just a man (although He was), but that He was also God. Can you think of it- our great and powerful God of the universe came to Earth and became human flesh. But Christ’s teachings did not stop there, He went on to say... that He was divine, and because He is divine, He was without sin. And because He was without sin, He could (and does) become the barer of all the sins of mankind. ALL of our sins would be placed on Christ. He would take the death and hell we deserve and in exchange He would give us the promise of Heaven. And this is just what He has done for us. We should never lose sight of who Christ was: Our God in human flesh. And what Christ has done for us: He died the death we deserve that we may spend eternity with Him. What a mighty God we have! Have a blessed day.

2019-11-22

Rooted and built up!

So walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him (col2:6-7). Mount Mitchell in North Carolina, is the highest point in the eastern United States. The trees that grow high on the mountain have been stunted and gnarled by the hostile climate and rocky soil. But we are told that when one of those trees dies, its wood is highly prized, because it is so strong from growing in such a harsh environment. What happens when the winds of adversity disrupts our lives? Do they knock. us down and stop our growth? Or like the trees on Mount Mitchell, do we grow stronger? It has been said, “Triumph” is a way of life, not an isolated incident. Habitual faith means getting into and staying in “Faith Mode.” That means we are to mature to the point where our faith is our first respond, not our last resort . In the book of Daniel, the three Hebrew children developed their faith-walk to the point that they could say, “Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods”(3:17-18). The three Hebrew children possessed total confidence in God. Our habitual faith, learned in the adversities of life, is our key in the fight of spiritual momentum. Remember: when we are facing the adversities of life remember who Jesus is and what He has done for us. If He can join the Hebrew children in the midst of a great fiery furnace He will join us too in our trial of this life! Have a blessed day.

2019-11-21

Viruses

The creation itself will be liberated from it’s bondage of decay (rms8:21). Have you ever had a computer virus? You know you open a seminally innocent email thinking it’s one thing only to find out later that it’s something far worse... So, we have one of two choices, take our computer to have the virus wiped clean or (my favorite) just get a new one! Either way this small virus has reeked havoc on our lives. You know the human race has a virus, the virus of sin. God created Adam and Eve without sin. He met their every need, and developed a relationship with them. But it only took till the third chapter of the Bible for sin to set in, and God has been doing everything since to rid us of this sin virus. Our human hearts are infected with this deadly sin virus. Mankind’s fellowship with God was destroyed. For that matter all of creation has reaped the penalty of our sin virus, but it has made us morally weak and corrupt. But we do have hope, and it is found only in Christ. God sent His only Son to rebuild what was lost between God and us, even when we have removed God from our lives, schools, government... everything. Only God can remove our sin virus, and it starts with the renewing of our hearts. One day God will remove this deadly virus , not just from the hearts of man but from all of creation as well, forever! Are you ready for that day, I hope so. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-19

Spreading the Gospel

When he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open... See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut (rev3:7-8). When God opens a door for us, what reasonable excuse can we give not to go through it. None, that i can think of. God has been opening doors to spread His Word to millions all over the world. Some have been freed from the grip of atheism, while other are immersed in secular or religious oppression. But in spite of the barriers, God is opening doors of opportunities for His Word to be shared. So, what keeps us from walking through them? When God called my husband to be a pastor, one of my greatest fears was being moved from my family and friends. But, God provided a school and the finances for the education needed. God provided everything, all we had to do was to have a willingness to follow His leading, and we got to stay in the beautiful little town we love. God may never call you to become a missionary or a pastor (but He might). But God has called every Christian to share the gospel of Christ (mt28:19). But there are some basic things we can do: we can pray for those who are in the mission field, we can give to missions or even maybe go on a short mission project. Jesus tells us, “the harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into the harvest field”(mt9:37-38). Will you be willing to support those who are on the front line of the spread of the Gospel? Have a blessed day.

2019-11-17

Jesus wept

We gives thanks to God... because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven (col1:3,5). Have you ever thought of the calling home of a Christian? I know I have many times in the last couple of years. But no matter how hard I try to envision it, my little pea brain cannot comprehend it. At our moment of death the believer in Christ enters into Heaven (kn16:22). Let’s face it from our human standpoint, death is always tinged with sadness, grief and sorrow. And it isn’t wrong for us to mourn the loss of our loved ones- it’s impossible not too. The Bible tell us in the book of John (11:32-35), that Jesus wept (not just a few tears, but really deep sorrow) at the grave of His beloved friend Lazarus. And Jesus knew what He was going to do for His friend. As a Christian we should not consider death of fellow believer a tragedy. The apostle Paul tells us, that we should not “grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope”(1thes4:13). It has been said that, “Time does not heal all wounds, but it does take time for wounds to heal” (unknown). Grief is normal and an necessary part of our lives-so we should not chastise ourselves for being human. Life is hard and dealing with the passing of a loved one is part of our journey. But be of good hope, our way to Heaven will lead us through the valley of the shadow of death, but the angels of our God will accompany us all the way- and beyond that shadowy valley is Heaven- our glorious home. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-15

No more burdens

We know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is (1jhn3:2). Have your ever really wondered what Heaven will be like, I have... Will the streets really be made of gold, will I truly know my loved ones, what will we do there? And most importantly, will I get to see Jesus? I have many questions maybe you do too. The problem is that the Bible only give us some of the answers that we may have. But one thing is for sure, Heaven is going to be more glorious then we can ever imagine! Our hearts and minds are limited and we can only imagine what Heaven will be like base only on the things we can compare with here on earth. The apostle Paul tell us: “Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face”(1cor13:12). Meaning that when we look at ourselves in a mirror that it is only showing us what we look like, but not who we truly are (body and soul). But when we get to Heaven, than all the things we see and know will be face to face. One thing is true of Heaven- we will be there forever, all of our fears, insecurities, sorrows, disappointments, that we have lived with will be gone. We will no longer worry about our weaknesses, sin and failures that are part of our lives everyday. So, when life weighs you down think of Heaven. Turn your heart to Christ- for we are promised Heaven, where we do get to see Christ face to face! And where ALL of life’s burdens and sorrows will be lifted from our shoulders FOREVER! Have a blessed day.

2019-11-14

God grace

Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ (jhn1:17). It has been said that the word “grace” means more than God’s kindness or gentleness towards us, more than His mercy. Grace means His underserved favor: God owes us nothing and we deserve nothing. The Bible tells us, “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee”(2cor12:9). God does not alway deliver us from life’s problems, but He does supply us with the strength to handle our problems. Grace is the empowerment to persevere. Grace is our enablement to bear the trial and troubles of life’s burdens (work, family, friends). Our endurance is not based on our personal strength, but on God’s grace. Our weaknesses are the platforms in which God uses to show His power. God will sustain us even if we don’t understand the reason for our predicament. Grace is God’s promise to us- not the answer to all our troubles and trials. In our times of trial and troubles we must remind ourselves of God’s goodness in the past. Casting all of our burdens on Him. Trusting your case into His care and resting in His promises. So, the question has to be asked, “Is God’s grace sufficient enough for the trial and trouble that you maybe facing today?” I pray that His grace is sufficient enough. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-13

Power of the tongue

You are my hiding place... I hope in Your word (psm119:114). It is true God’s Word never changes. Jesus tells us, “I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen will by any means disappear from the Law’(mt5:18). The words we speak and the words we hear have tremulous power over us (to encourage or to tear down). God spoke the universe into existence through words. Jesus cursed the fig tree and it withered immediately. The Bible teaches us that, “Both life and death are in the power of the tongue”(pro18:21). James tells us that the tongue us like the rudder of a ship. Though it is quite small this rudder gives direction to the whole vessel. Our life tends to follow our words and our tongue setting the course of our lives. As we face the trial and troubles of life, there are times when no one but you can tell you what you need to hear. Sometimes you need to put yourself straight. I am not talking about cursing yourself, but speaking word of truth. Learn to rehearse the promises of God to your own heart. Speak faith, speak life. Dare to believe the promise of God. “Set your mind on the things above, and not on the things of earth”(col3:2). Don’t let the things that are meant to destroy us, shape us. Let God’s Words shape and guide you each and every day. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-12

Never Alone

Surely I am with you always to the very end of the age (mt28:20). It has been said on the human level, we have little hope in the world. There is more immorality and lawlessness then ever. The wrongs of this world are winning, while the rights seem to be losing. We put our faith in money, jobs, status, pleasures, and thrills. We have left God out of society and our lives. But for those who have chosen to walk with God, we know what a treasured thing it is to hear God’s Word speaking directly to our hearts. What a blessing it is when God quickens (makes alive) His Word to our heart. The strength we draw, the peace we experience and the comfort we feel from a life-giving, lifting word of God. “Having a room full of Bible’s will not help, but a single verse will illuminate our hearts and bring empowerment”(unknown). Don’t look at the world and choose the follow its disfunctionality. Remember, our living Christ can and will bring glorious hope to our lives and our world. Jesus has promised, “I am with you always.” In these few words we can find encouragement for the discouraged, hope for the hopeless, and help for the helpless. We find purpose and guidance and peace and power. So no matter what this world promises, Christ has promised that we are NEVER alone. Have a blessed day.

2019-11-10

Mansions

I am going there to prepare a place for you (jhn14:2). We (my husband, mother and I) have just built a new home, and it is just what we wanted. My husband and I love to travel, but at the end of each trip we look forward to coming home. There is something to be said about the comfort that is found in our homes. In our scripture today, Jesus is telling us one more thing He is doing for us. He is going to prepare a place for us (one in which we will feel even more content them our home we have here). We do not evaporate or just disappear like many may think (and will argue). Nope... Jesus is telling us of the place He is preparing for us, “In My Father’s house is many mansions”(jhn14:2). So, not only is Jesus prepare a place but He is also preparing a mansion for us! As a Christian, when we die, we enter immediately into the presence of Christ, straight to the very place that is prepared for us, to spend eternity with God. So, in a sense we are simply changing addresses- without all the hassle and expense. Christ has promised and is preparing a place for those that have chosen Him as Savior and Lord. I Hope you are anticipating that mansion that Christ has prepared for you? Have a blessed day

2019-11-08

Reservoir or channel?

Honor the Lord with all your possessions, and with the first fruits of all your increase (prov3:9). God doesn’t need us or our money to get His work done. He can do His work without us. But He does arrange it that His work often depends on our generosity. There are at least two things that happen when we give with the right attitude. First, God remind us that everything we have really doesn’t belong to us. Everything we have are gifts from God. The Bible tells us, “All things come You, and of Your own we have given You”(1chrn29:14). The second thing we learn, is that when we give, we help to meet the needs of others. What we do for others, God will do for you. “Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, shall he receive of the Lord”(eph6:8). The slightest encouragement we can and do offer is not only heard in Heaven, but is also rewarded on earth. Someone has once said, that our lives should resemble channels, not reservoirs. A reservoir stores waters; but a channel distributes it. God wants us to be channels of blessings to others. Are you a reservoir or a channel? Have a blessed day.

2019-11-07

A free gift

The Lord will...preserve me for His heavenly kingdom (2tim4:18). Have you ever thought about preparing for Heaven? Its kinda like getting ready for a trip. You know, first you have to decide where you want to go and then you have to purchase your ticket. But how can we purchase a ticket for something as great as Heaven? Its been said by many that a person can get to Heaven by being a good person, by going to church, by acting religious, or by giving money to the poor. While all these act are good and nice they are just that, acts... and they will not get you to Heaven. The Bible tells us that we can never make it to Heaven on our own. But the good news is that Christ has made a way for us, and that the ticket is free! It was paid for by Him at the cross. So, if something is offered to us free, why refuse it? Why do so many people try some other way, thinking it will get them to Heaven? But Christ still has an open invitation for everyone... The Bible tells us: ‘“Come!’ Whoever is thirsty, let him come, and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life”(rev22:17). Have you received this free gift or you still looking elsewhere? Have a blessed day.

2019-11-06

Wisdom applied

The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable (jms3:17). It has been said that we are living in the greatest time of all. We have more access to information quicker then any other generation (and all in the palm of our hand). More facts have been discovered in the past century then all other centuries put together. But you would think with all of this knowledge we would be at peace, instead we have more war and the greatest amount of genacide in human history. Our Bible tells of two types of wisdom. Wisdom is defined as applied knowledge. In other word it is taking what we know and applying it to our lives (you know if the stove is hot, we don’t touch it). The first kind of wisdom that is given to us is godly wisdom. This wisdom views life in terms of eternity. The Bible tells us, “The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partially and without hypocrisy”(jms3:17). The second type of wisdom is worldly wisdom. This wisdom takes God out of every part of society, trying to solve societies problems with human knowledge and reasoning. But in trying to solve societies problems with only human reasoning where has it gotten us? Don’t get me wrong, wisdom is applied knowledge... sometimes we forget the applied part of wisdom, but the greatest wisdom we can use is the wisdom that we have in the Word of God. So the question has to be asked, what type of wisdom are you relying on? Have a blessed day.

2019-11-05

A thankful heart

Devote yourself to prayer, being watchful and thankful (col4:2). Prayer is as important to the Christian as breathing is to life. But prayer is more than just asking God for the things we desire or want. Our prayers should include confession of our sins, but it should also include praises to God for who He is and for what He has done for us. We should be thanking God as well. The Bible tells us in numerous of places, Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!(psm107:1). In the New Testament Jesus, before He had given bread to the multitude, He first “gave thanks” (mt15:36) to His Father for its provision. Seated at the table in the upper room Jesus again “gave thanks” (lk22:17,19) before He faced the horror of the cross. Have you ever discovered how easy it is to give thanks when life is easy and things are going our way? But how easy is it be thankful when life has given us a serious blow (a car accident, cancer diagnosis, the death of a loved one, fired from a job)? Our bible doesn’t tell us to just give thanks when life is good... but to “give thanks in ALL circumstances, for this is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus” (1thes5:18). Have you ever noticed that a thankful heart drives away a sour or prideful spirit? Make thankfulness part of your prayers everyday! Have a blessed day.

2019-11-02

Successful...

Therefore, holy brothers who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus... He was faithful to the one who appointed him (heb3:1-2). Have you even done a word search of the major booksellers just using He word “success”? We if you did you, literally thousands of books can be found. Our world is obsessed with being successful (in everything not just one or two areas of life). So, what is success? If we are to listen to the world, it can be measured by: our financial, athletic, business, professional, social achievements. This list is endless! A person can spend (or destroy) their lives in pursuit of theses measurements. But how does God define success? His way of success is very different from that of the world. It can be summed up in one statement: “in God’s eyes, success is faithfulness to His calling.” “There is often a great deal of knowledge where there is but little wisdom to improve that knowledge. It is not the most knowing Christian, but the most wise Christian who sees, avoids, and escapes Satan’s snares!”(P.Brooks). Understanding the ways of God is true wisdom. Its ok to want to be successful at something, but not to the point of where God is completely removed and we are completely consumed by our pursuit of being successful. Where does your success lie, in the pursuit of the worlds definition or pursuing the calling God has placed before you? Have a blessed day.

2019-11-01

The Son Glorified

But these (miraculous signs) are written that you may believe that Jesus Christ, the Son glorified, and that by believing you may have life in His name (jhn20:31). Jesus is the core message of the Bible. In the Old Testament we look forward to His coming. In the New Testament we recount His coming. Without Christ our Bibles are just another ancient history book (like the accounts of Josephus). It is because of Christ that the Bible has value. Jesus isn’t just the center of the Bible, He should be the center of our lives as well. Without Christ we have no hope for this life and the promise of Heaven. “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable (1cor15:19). Meaning that we have more to live for than what this life offers. “For the lost, this life is as good as it will get, for the believer this is the worse as thing will get”(unknown). We have more than hope beyond our life on earth. We as believers have the blessed hope and promise of Christ. “Looking for that blessed hope and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus”(titus2:13). Christ will rule as our righteous King forever-no broken promises. One day Christ will appear in all His glory and He will set things right. Christ our Judge will settle all accounts and His rule will have no end. Are we looking to His return or the artificial, unstable life this world offers? Have a blessed day.

2019-10-31

A bird’s eye view

Fear not, for I am with you: be not dismayed for I am your God (isa41:10). When we are facing a trial or even in the middle of a raging strom, it will benefit us to learn to see the bigger picture of God’s plan. For some of us this may be very difficult (because our storms can consume us). Try this as an experiment: take a quarter and place it in front of one eye, it will block everything else out of your sight (all you see is the quarter). Then take this same quarter and place it twenty feet away- and from this perspective you can hardly notice the quarter. So, in the same way, when the troubles and trials of life come (family, work, financial etc.) they all have a way of blocking our spiritual vision and can (or will) prevent us from seeing farther than the strom or trials that are raging around us. But it is imperative that we learn to take a step back in order to get a birds-eye view of the trial raging around us. Regaining our perspective can and will strengthen us in the storms of life. It has been said, “few things are as bad as they seem at first.” We know when tragedy strikes us, it may seem (and really does) as if our whole world is falling apart. But remember: “Fear not, for I am with you.” “Time does not heal all wounds, but it does take time for wounds to heal”(unknown). Are you fearing the strom that is raging around you? FEAR NOT!! Have a blessed day.

2019-10-30

The last promise fulfilled

Behold, I am coming quickly! (Rev22:7). The Bible is filled with the many (hundreds) of promises of God. It tells of how Christ has fulfilled every one of them except one. If you knew of a friend or loved one who kept every promise except one... wouldn’t you say that person is trustworthy? I would... Christ has kept every promise made except one- His promise to return for us. We are told in the Old Testament, “Behold I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind”(isa65:17). Christ, Himself also tells us in the New Testament, “I go to prepare a place for you. And... I will come again and receive you to Myself”(jhn14:2-3). The last book of the Bible is devoted to the return of Christ and the fulfillment of His last promise. The Apostle John wrote of his (and our) excitement at the return of Christ, “Amen. Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus” (rev22:20). It is not if Christ will return it’s a matter of when Christ will return. The first coming of Christ (His birth), was shared by few. But His second coming (His return) will be known by ALL! Are we looking to the return of Christ as if we He will fulfill His last promise? I hope so... Have a blessed day.

2019-10-29

Brazillai the encourager

Now Brazilian was very old, eighty years of age. He had provided for the king during his stay in Mahanaim (2sam29:32). Many of us have never heard of Brazilai ( I never have). The Bible tells us that Brazilian lived in a small obscure, isolated village and that he was old... but in one of the saddest events of the Old Testament we read that King David’s son Absolom tried to take the throne of David. This forced King David and is men to flee to the village of Mahanaim. But Brazillai helped them with supplies (food and water). After the help of Barzallai, Absolom was defeated and King David was retorted to his throne. Just like Barzillai, you may feel old or maybe worthless. But follow the actions of Barzillai, don’t turn in on yourself when faced with an unexpected challenge. Refuse to isolate yourself from those who may need your help. You may feel you don’t have the strength to do much, but don’t be afraid to do something. Give a kind word of encouragement (there are many who need encouragement). It’s been said, “the closest friendships are born in adversity”(unkwn). So, use the problems that we are facing to help others. “Problems are the glue that join our hearts together”(unkwn). The little things that Barzillai did helped King David regain his throne. Your actions may not help someone regain a throne, but it might help someone regain their life back. So who do you know that needs some help- be their Brazillai. Have a blessed day.

2019-10-26

Light and shadows

If you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you are blessed (1pt3:14). Have you ever noticed how all the great masterpieces of art contain both light and shadows? Artist use light and shadow to highlight certain features of their subject matter, they provide contrast and harmony to reveal the masterpieces beauty. A happy life is not just filled with sunshine and beautiful days, but it is filled with both light and shadow. Our suffering and persecution can become a blessing-because it can form a dark backdrop for the radiance of our Christian walk. “Our hearts will never be satisfied until that glorified Lord Jesus becomes our object bright and fair”(C.A.Coates). It has been said that we pray when we are obsessed with our needs. We give thanks when we are fixed on our blessings. But we worship when we are preoccupied with God. Through worship we see God as He is: all-powerful, ever-present and all knowing. His immensity fills us with wonder and awe, and our hearts esteem Him as we marvel at His greatness. It is this mindset that builds up our inner man and restores our soul. Our worship truly imparts strength. How strong is our worship of God in the light and shadow of life? Have a blessed day.

2019-10-25

Society’s greatest social problem

I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety (psm4:8). We have heard and read of society’s greatest social problem... drug and alcohol abuse. It’s not just the use of illegal drugs it also involves prescription drug, over the counter drugs and alcohol. Many rely on these to face each day. Now don’t get me wrong there is some legitimate reasons for prescription drug under the proper supervision. But for most, this is not the case. I have witnessed people who will reach for drugs and or alcohol instead of facing the difficulties of life, all they want to do is escape their problems. But sadly, all this does is create more problems. I have a brother and sister in law who have relied on drugs (Rx or otherwise) for the last 20years. It has ruined them, their family and anyone who comes in contact with them. This breaks my heart. Their solution never makes things better- in fact it has made things worse. Is it any wonder that the Bible warns us of the use of alcohol (and I will add drugs),“at the last...bites like a serpent, and stings like a viper”(prov23:32). We must not use anything as a substitute for God. As we face the many challenges of this life, remember turning to anything other than God can lead us down a road that we were never meant to follow. God loves us and He wants to give us the peace we are searching for. Jesus has promised to those who follow Him, “I will give you peace”(mt11:28). Where does your peace come from? Have a blessed day.

2019-10-24

Is faith illogical?

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities- his eternal and divine nature- have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made (rms1:20). The question has been asked numerous of time, “Is our faith illogical?” If we listen to the naysayers and fault finders- the answer to the question seems to appear to be “yes.” Each year best-selling books are written announcing that faith in God is dead. Television show promote the latest and greatest self-help gurus claiming to have the ability to solve all of life’s problems, if we just follow these simple steps... But the question remains, “Is faith illogical?” I do not think so. Some of the most brilliant people I know are people who have deep faith in God. It takes more faith to do and believe some of the latest self help things, then it take to believe that we were made by a loving God (and made for a purpose). But there is another reason for our great faith in God: I am convinced (and so are a lot of others), that Jesus Christ is who He claims to be- God in human flesh, sent to save us from our sins. So, please do not be misled by the rhetoric of todays headlines. But rejoice in that in Christ “are hidden the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (col2:3). Do you think faith is illogical? I hope not. Have a blessed day.

2019-10-23

Fellow believers

Christ is the head of the church, his body of which he is the savior (eph5:23). When we come to Christ as our Savior and Lord, we do this alone. We alone become His follower. But after that, we are not alone- we become a member of His family. We have become part of a vast group of people through the ages who have trusted Christ as Savior and Lord. We are brother and sisters in Christ. We will have the awesome privilege to know a small group this side of Heaven, this community transcends our local churches and denominations. The body of Christ can be one of our greatest encouragements when life is pressing in on us. It can be shown through visits, acts of kindness, texts, cards, calls, gifts and prayers, which will bring comfort to the hurting heart. No... our local church may not be perfect, but please don’t use this excuse to avoid fellowship with other believers. The Bible tells us,”to encourage one another and build each other up”(thess5:11). Our path to wholeness is greatly helped by the ministering of God’s people to each other in our times of adversity. Life sometimes brings things our way that cause us to lose our equilibrium. Godly people help us regain our footing and proper perspective. Are you encouraging a fellow believer? Have a blessed day.

2019-10-22

Foreshadowing

Our days on earth are as a shadow (1chrn29:15). It has been said by C.S.Lewis that he compared this life as “shadow lands” in compared to the glory to come. Even our lives at it’s best is but a shadow of what awaits us in Heaven. Does this mean we turn our backs on the things of this world and its trial and delights? I do not think so, instead (as Lewis suggested) the good things God gives us are a foreshadowing (a hint or encouragement) of things to come. We have the joy of marriage, knowing that it is a foretaste of even a greater joy: the Heavenly marriage feast of the Lamb (rev19:9). We get to enjoy the beauty of God’s creation (the roaring oceans to the majesty mountains), knowing that they are the foretaste of even a greater beauty: the glory of Heaven (rev21:23). Take delight in the good things God gives us. But find a balance between the trails of life and the foreshadows that God given us. Remember: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights”(jms1:17). “Life can only be understood by looking backward, but it must be lived by looking forward” (unkn). Our looking backward should cause us to learn, our looking forward should propel us to live! Are we looking for the foreshadows of what’s to come or living thing the shadows of this world? Have a blessed day.

2019-10-21

Being a parent

Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it (prov22:6). Being a parent is said to be one of the hardest jobs around. Ask any parent! Being a successful parent is even harder. Todays standards seem to be gauged somewhere between some type of college or keeping a child out of jail. But in all of the expert advise out there, I think we have a tendency to overlook some basic truths of being a parent. Understand as parents or grandparents, we know that each child is different, not two are alike. Each day will be met with a different challenge, whether it is getting them to take a bath to doing their homework. As parents we should realize that each and every child is a gift from God. He has given and entrusted them to us. We should be letting our children know that we love them. Don’t be afraid to show them affection, teach them right from wrong, spend time with them (big difference between spending time with them and in the same room together). As parents and grandparents we should be an example of faith (if you don’t- someone else will show hem something different). Pray for them, read the Bible with them, showing them how important Christ is to you. Know that with God’s help you can and will be the kind of parent/grandparent your child needs. And remember that God has promised that even if your child strays from Him, he will return to him. So don’t give up hope even if your child is not living the life and examples you have set! Have a blessed day.

2019-10-18

Our look to eternity

I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness (psm17:15). The story has been told of Sir William Russell (an English patriot) who went to the scaffold in 1683. Before his death, he took his pocket watch and handed to the attending physician saying,”Would you kindly take my time piece? I have no use for it. I am now dealing with eternity.” Our world fades completely in the light of eternity. The things that were once very important are no longer of any importance. The only thing that counts- is our relationship with the Lord. The apostle Paul wrote, “Since all things will be dissolved what manner of person ought you to be in holy conduct and goodness?... Be diligent to be found by His in peace, without spot and blameless” (2pt3:11,14). Here is some good advise, when life’s tragedies and trial block our view of God- “Instead of preparing to die(or the hope of death), start preparing to live. Don’t give mental air time to the ‘What if’s’ in life. Live each moment to the fullest. Instead of mourning over what we have lost, be grateful for what we have left”(unknown). How different would today be if we knew today would be our last before meeting God face-to-face? Would we live today as if it were our last- for one day it will be! Have a blessed day.

2019-10-15

Christ’s return

Behold, I am coming quickly! (Rev22:7). The Bible is filled with the many (hundreds) of promises of God. It tells of how Christ has fulfilled every one of them except one. If you knew of a friend or loved one who kept every promise except one... wouldn’t you say that person is trustworthy? I would... Christ has kept every promise made except one- His promise to return for us. We are told in the Old Testament, “Behold I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind”(isa65:17). Christ, Himself also tells us in the New Testament, “I go to prepare a place for you. And... I will come again and receive you to Myself”(jhn14:2-3). The last book of the Bible is devoted to the return of Christ and the fulfillment of His last promise. The Apostle John wrote of his (and our) excitement at the return of Christ, “Amen. Even so, come quickly Lord Jesus” (rev22:20). It is not if Christ will return it’s a matter of when Christ will return. The first coming of Christ (His birth), was shared by few. But His second coming (His return) will be known by ALL! Are we looking to the return of Christ as if we He will fulfill His last promise? I hope so... Have a blessed day.

2019-10-14

Dont sweat the small stuff!

The length of our days is seventy years... yet their span is but trouble and sorrow (psm90:10). There it is in black and white: life is tough and we are marked by trouble and sorrow. It has been said that, “there is no false advertising in the Bible”(unknown). I wish things could be different, maybe thats why we are so quick to believe anything that would promise us otherwise... Life does sometimes brings us smidgets of happiness. But we live in a broken world filled with broken people. In his book, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff... And It’s All Small Stuff, author Richard Carlson, explained that, “many things in life wont matter in 5 years. Few things will matter in 20 years. Very few things will matter in 50 years. And nothing will matter in 100 years.” Sounds kinda hopeless doesn’t it? But its not, the things we are fretting about now will be inconsequential later. SO... DONT SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF!!! The point being, when facing the trouble and trials of life (if not now-you will), we must learn to see the bigger picture of God’s plan. Life does have a way of blocking this perspective. Most of the time we only see the storm raging around us. Take time to see things from a Heavenly perspective. You will be glad you did- it will return our sight back to the only One who is our true hope- Jesus! Have a blessed day.

2019-10-06

Christ our hope

(Christ) has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God 1pt3:22). How do we know that Jesus was God in human form? Let me start my short list (for the complete version read your Bible): Jesus lived perfect in life (not that His life was perfect, but He was perfect). He could ask, “Which one of you convicts Me of sin?”(jhn8:46). No one could accuse Him (so they lied of Him). We have evidence of His miraculous power- turning water into wine (jhn2:1-11). Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (jhn11:38-44). His power was the power of God Almighty. We have evidence of His fulfillment of prophecy- over three hundred of them! In the Old Testament (written hundreds of year before His birth) we are told of His birth, death and resurrection. But I think the most amazing proof is that Christ changes lives and has done it for over two thousand years! Christ alone has the ability and power to change the human heart. I am glad that He has changed my heart. Faith in Christ is not a leap of faith in the dark (as many think). It is our decision based on the solid facts of life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He is our hope and solid foundation. “Hope is the companion of power, and mother of success; for whoso hopes strongly has within him the gift of miracles”(S.Simles). I am a miracle because of Christ- I hope you are too. Have a blessed day.

2019-10-05

God is not finished with us yet!

(Elijah) came to a broom tree, sat down under it and prayed. That he might die. “I have had enough, Lord” he said (1kng19:4). You and I have been there- so down in our own discouragement that it overwhelmed us. This was the place Elijah found himself. He was one of God’s most faithful servants, confronting the prophets of Baal (pagans). But after God’s great victory, Elijah found himself discouraged, depressed and fearing for his life. So Elijah ran... to the desert and thought himself a failure. We have all been in the same mindset, wanting to run, thinking ourselves a failure (ok, maybe only me). But we must remember: When one chapter ends, don’t close the book. Start writing another chapter. Let our scars remind us of where we have been, but never let them determine where we are going. We are survivors, not a statistic. We are overcomes, not victims. We cannot go back and make a brand new start, but we can start now and make a brand new ending. Yesterday ended at midnight- so make the most of today! Elijah was not a failure as he thought, God provided him with food, water and rest. God also reminded Elijah that he wasn’t finished with him. God will do the same for us, so don’t throw in the towel yet... remember God was not finished with Elijah, and He is not finished with us either... Have a blessed day.

2019-10-04

Take up His cross

If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me (lk9:23). The words of Jesus in today’s’ s verse are sobering. He is warning His disciples (and us) that it will be costly to follow Him . Jesus is telling His disciples (and us) that they (and us) will have to give up plans, goals, and desires. He is telling all will share in Christ’s rejection and death. Is it any wonder that “many of disciples turned back and no longer followed him’ (jhn6:66). Why not be a follower of the King of kings and Lord of lords? William Temple (Archbishop Canterbury 1944) once said,”To worship is to quicken the conscience, by the holiness of God, to feed the mind with the truth of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God, to devote the will to the purpose of God.” Someday our lives will come to an end (remember mortality is 100%) and all the things we have gathered for ourselves will vanish. The things we accumulate today will be outdated in just a few short years. Please don’t waste your life on those things. Instead become a follow of Christ- it will not be easy (life rearly is), but will be worth the things we give up. Remember- Christ is “the way and the truth and the life”(jhn14:6). Have a blessed day.

2019-10-02

Cling and hope

The Lord will be shelter for His people (joel3:16). A British historian named Arnold Toynbee had a personal slogan, “cling and hope.” But in todays sociality what are we to cling and hope for? Millions cling to the wreckage they have made with their lives. Others cling to false ideologies or deceptive cults. Still others cling to their possessions or destructive relationships. So, what is our hope? The word “hope” means to anticipate with pleasure. Our hope is “the God of hope,” the Lord of expectancy. As we trust Him, He is able to “fill” (infuse or cram) us with delight and peace. It has been said that “hope is the biblical shorthand for unconditional certainty.” This means we can take pleasure in things yet to come. Life does present us with great challenges, but in the midst of these challenges we have someone who can and will guide us through them. As Christians we can find refuge and hope from these storms by our living faith in our living God. We as Christians can do more than cling and hope. We know with Christ, He has secured us forever. So, hope is... simply expect what our faith believes! Where does your hope lie? Have a blessed day.

2019-10-01

Families

All your children shall be taught by the Lord, And great shall be the peace of your children (is a54:13). I wonder if we have ever stopped to think of the many promises God has given us concerning our families? Probably not, because if we did, we would understand that our families are under attack... our families are the basic unit of society. Families were in place long before governments or countries. Our family units are in trouble. The Bible tells us that the first crime committed was when Cain killed his brother Abel. Instead of loving our family (we all have one that are easier to love than others)- our families are all to often marked be conflict and tension. I think the main reason our families are on critical condition is that we have neglected God’s rules for a successful home. We have put self first over our families. We value the things we acquire (homes, education, cars, vacations, toys) over the ones we love. We cannot have the right kind of home if we doing everything for our own benefit. We can have the right kind of home and family but it involves putting others first and following God’s guidance. The first step is to start on your knees asking Christ for forgiveness. Ask God to give you a new love for each other (family members). Don’t let your family drift apart. Resist the pressures that many have surcome to and come together around the cross of Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-28

Honoring Parents

Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has Commanded you (duet5:16). We are told one of the signs that we are living in the latter days is that “people will be...disobedient to their parents”(1tim3:2). We see it everywhere- children screaming at their parents, teenagers cussing their parents, even adult children abusing their parents. This seems to be the norm. Instead of honoring their parents, society seems to be ok with dishonoring them. But this is not how its suppose to be. As long as our parents are alive we are to honor and respect them. Even if your were given less than perfect parents (which no parents is perfect), we are to honor them. I have seen many elderly people who were placed in a care facility (across all income factors), that have been forgotten by their families. No visits, no letters, cards or calls- its just very sad. Just because their physical needs were taken by the staff of the facility, doesn’t mean we stop there. Some of the most lonely people in the world are those parents who are forgotten! I bet if we ask anyone who’s parent (s)has passed away, they will tell you that they would give anything to have a little more time with their parent. God has given you the parent you have- good, bad or indifferent- they are the your parent. Honor them, begin today to make their last days their best days. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-27

Spiritual Millionaires

This is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life us in His Son. He who has the Son has life (1jhn5:11-12). The story has been told of a wealthy man who died and left a million dollars to his poor relative. When the lawyer presents the poor man with the account information, the lawyer explained the gift and that the money can be used anyway he wanted at anytime. How would we act if this happened to us? Would we question its authenticity? Or would we accept it by faith that we are now millionaires? Think of the difference in how we would view life. In a far greater way our God offers us a gift (one that makes an eternal difference). We are offered the gift of Heaven (salvation) through Jesus Christ God’s only Son. Christ has done everything possible to make eternal life available to us. The only requirement we have is to accept it. Don’t doubt this eternal gift, take that first step by faith and allow Christ to come into your life. But the wonderful generosity of God doesn’t stop there. God desires us to draw on His amazing riches each day- He has given us His wisdom, truth, strength, grace, peace, mercy and His presence. Are you living the life or a spiritual pauper or are you living the life of a spiritual millionaire? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-25

Heaven Awaits

You yourself had (in heaven) a better and lasting possession (heb10:34). The apostle Paul wrote,”If only for this we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men”(1cor15:19). So, what he is saying is if there is no life after death, no Heaven, no promise of a better world- then life in this world is empty, hopeless and without meaning or purpose. But this life is not all, ahead of us is Heaven and someday, “we shall always be with the Lord”(1thes4:17). “The future is bright as the promises of God. If you are saved, this is as bad as it will ever be. Your eternal home awaits ahead. No sin, no suffering, no sickness, no conflict, no tragedies, no grief, no sorrow, no Devil, no flesh, no evil world system- only the Lamb of God seated on His throne” (A.Judson). Knowing Heaven is real and is waiting for His own, this should make us live our lives differently. We should be more aware of the lost, be more willing to help those who are without hope. The apostle Paul also tells us, “I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content”(phil4:11). Are you content to live as if this is the best things will ever be or are you living as if Heaven awaits? My hope is that you are living as if Heaven awaits! Have a blessed day.

2019-09-24

The One who knows us best

If anyone is in christ, he is a new creation (2cor5:17). Is it not logical to believe that the only One who can recreate us is the One who created us in the first place? If your car was needing a repair, would you take it to a plummer or if you are in need of life saving surgery would you go to an electrician? I think the answer to both of these question are the same “No.” So it only stands to reason when we have spiritual problems, they can only be solved by the One who knows us best spiritually. When we are faced with the trials and tragedies of life our Spiritual forces come into play in our weakness, not in our own strengths. It is for this reason the Apostle Paul could say God’s “strength is made perfect in weakness” (2cor12:9). D.L.Moody put it this way, “God can fill a broken vessel as long as it stays under the faucet.” “So, our inner strength is not the result of spiritual exercise as much as it is the direct animation of the spiritual dynamite inside our being. It is ‘His Spirit in the inner man’” (H.Vaughan), not ours. It takes the supernatural force of God to help us as we face trails and troubles of life. So, the question has to be asked, “Are you allowing the God who created you to show His might strength and power in life trials and tragedies or are you handling them on your own?” Have a blessed day.

2019-09-23

Worry vs. Wisdom

The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth (Pam145:18). What are the things in life you do not worry about? Maybe, you never worry about turning on a light switch and not having a light come on? Perhaps, you never worry about your refrigerator not keeping things in it cold? Even the worst worriers in the world don’t worry about somethings. In his book, “How to stop Worrying and Start Living” Andrew Carnegie gives us his formula for peace. “First- gain or acquire all the knowledge you can about your situation. Make sure you gather all the FACTS (not just your assumptions). Second- Make a decision based on your understanding on those FACTS. Third- never look back once you have made the decision. Our second-guessing and rehashing previous decisions do not promote mental and emotional stability. Uncertainty and doubt will weaken you, but a good understanding and good decision making gives you strength.” “Knowledge is knowing what to do. Wisdom is knowing when and how to do it”(unknown). Understanding and seeking the ways of God is true wisdom, and this wisdom is more important than understanding your circumstances. We have to come to a point in our walk with God, where we trust where He is leading and not to worry about the challenges that lay ahead of us. Are we seeking a better understanding of our God who will see us through the challenges of life or are you worrying about the circumstances of life? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-22

The angry man

An angry man stirs up dissension, and a hot-tempered one commits many sins (prov29:22). Most of us have been there... so angry that we could spit (ok, maybe it’s only me). But when we are angry we know the damage it can do. Anger can make us do things that we wouldn’t ordinarily do, even when we think we have it under control. Our anger can damage everyone it touches and it will open the door to a lot of other sins. But God wants to help us with our anger. The best way to start is, we must admit we are angry- and then be willing to hand it over to God. We have to understand that we can not handle it on our own. We need Gods help. A lot of the time our anger stems from the influences of others. So, ask God to help us see others the way He sees them and love others as He does. Ask God to fill our hearts with His love, because anger and love can not coexist. The angry influences of others is something we can protect ourselves from... it has been said, “As much as possible shield yourself from people who bring strife into your environment. Welcome those who bring peace. And celebrate those who bring inspiration”(unknown). So the question should be asked, “who or what are you allowing to influence your world?” Have a blessed day.

2019-09-21

The good Shepherd

He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart (isa40:11). In the Old Testament we are given a wonderful example of God as our Shepherd. The Bible tells us, “Hear us O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph”(psm80:1). It is amazing that the Creator of the Universe stoops to become the Shepherd of His people. We are told that a shepherd is one who protects his sheep, he feeds them, and pursues them when they stray. At sundown he brings them into the fold, securing them against their enemies. Without the shepherd the sheep are doomed. King David tells us, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; he lead the me besides the still waters... Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever (psm23:1,6). Our New Testament tell us of another Shepherd- our Lord Jesus Christ: Christ Himself tells us, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep”(jhn10:11). The example of a good shepherd that is given to us in the Old Testament is the complete embodiment of Christ. Christ protects us us from the schemes of Satan. He feeds us by His Words and He pursues us when we stray. And He even has given His life for us. Christ truly is our Good Shepherd! Have a blessed day.

2019-09-20

Joy, not to be confused with happiness

The joy of the Lord is your strength (neh8:10). Many people think that Christians should always be smiling and happy, most will think something is wrong if they don’t. But this isn’t true, we find excellent examples in the life of Christ. The Bible tells us that, “Jesus wept”(lk11:35), at the tomb of His friend Lazarus. Jesus also cried as He approached the city of Jerusalem, “He saw the city and wept”(lk19:41). Please don’t confuse happiness with joy. Our happiness comes from circumstances; our joy wells up deep inside our souls as we learn to trust Christ. Our joy doesn’t mean that we are never sad or that we never cry (losing a loved one will prove otherwise). Our joy is a quiet confidence of our state of inner peace that comes from God. “One finds constantly that 90 percent of our trials and sorrows are made up of anticipation or imaginary evils which exist only in our discorded, unbelieving minds: Do not worry about tomorrow” (unknown). Life’s troubles will rob us of happiness, but they need not rob us of the joy which God gives us when we turn to Him in faith. Where are you finding your joy? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-19

I remember you

On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night (psm63:6). A wonderful habit every Christian should develop (but many don’t) is spending time alone with God everyday. When we truly understand the importance that prayer and alone time Christ took, can we begin to understand how important it is for us. Our Lord Jesus lives in unceasing prayer, pleading for us before the Father . He continually intervenes on our behalf. As our Mediator, He acts as our Advocate (1jhn2:1,5). Christ is the divine go-between God and us. The Bible tells us, “For when he did foreknowledge, he also did predestination to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren... What shall we then say to these things? If God is for us who can stand against us?(rms8:29,32). When we understand that God is for us, with us, and in us, it gives us a desire to spend precious time with Him. Remember: Jesus has overthrown the enemy without (the world), the enemy within (the flesh), and the enemy beneath (the Devil). Even though we are still on earth and still contending with these three adversaries we can find strength knowing that Jesus is praying for us! I wonder why so many still choose not to spend time in prayer with Christ knowing this? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-18

Not defenseless

This is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith (1jn5:4). The Bible tells us to, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour”(1pt5:8). What would we do if we encountered a lion? Well, most of us would try to run, if we can, maybe we would try grabbing some kind of weapon to protect ourselves. Well, this should be our strategy as we face the daily trials and temptations of life. When temptation plots on us (if not today just wait it will), our first response should be to flee. And when things still attack us, we need to use every weapon we have to drive them away. But, we do have some good news: God has not left us defenseless. He has given us His Word, His angels, His Spirit, and we have the encouragement of fellow believers. All are given to us that we may defend ourselves against trial and temptations. “To be filled with God is a great thing; to be filled with fullness of God is still greater; to be filled with ALL the fullness of God is greatest of all. This utterly bewilders the senses, and compounds the understanding; by leading us at once to consider the immensity of God, the infinity of His attributes and the absolute perfection of each” (W.Bramwell). No, God has not left us defenseless. We have all and more to stand against any attack. What weapons are you using to fend off the temptations and attacks of Satan? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-17

Spiritual strength

Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight (pam119:35). We are taught in our Bibles that God created us with more than a physical body- He also gave us a soul. Just as our physical bodies have certain characteristics, so does our soul’s. Our soul’s characteristics are intelligence, emotions and will. But our souls also long for peace, contentment and happiness. But most of all our souls have a desire or yearning to be reconciled to God our Creator. In our world it is said, “whichever dog you feed the most is the strongest.” The same can be said about our physical and spiritual body, whichever we feed the most is the strongest. Sadly, most of us feed our physical body very well, leaving our souls spiritual anemic. For us to be prepared for the things of this world and all of its demands we need to be spiritually strong. Our souls need as much attention as our physical bodies. Our soul requires worship, quietness and meditation. “The path of strength... is being made sensible of our weakness. Then that divine strength, which will never be a supplement of the flesh’s strength, can come in”(J.Darby). This means that we should not rely on physical strength alone. Nothing can or will completely satisfy our souls like the presence of God. We have a God size hole that can only be filled by Him... So, which dog are you feeding? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-16

The number of our days

Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom (psm90:12). Most of us think we are and even try to control our lives, but sadly we are not. Everything can change in an instant. Maybe you have seen it- a car accident, a heart attack, a pink slip or a sudden illness. The Bible tells us that, “The length of our days is seventy year-or eighty, if we have the strength; yet this span is but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away”(psm90:10). No other book is more realistic about our human situation then the Bible. Hope is the dominant theme in the Bible. It is mentioned 130 times. When we are going through the tunnels of our trials, we need hope (we grasp for any hope). Even when we are so far back in the tunnel that we cant see the light, we need to believe that there us a light. It has been said that, hope is the biblical shorthand for unconditional certainty.” This means that God us near, regardless of our circumstances or feelings. Rest assured God is with us at our first breath and He will be with us at our last breath. So, the question has to be asked... Are you relying on the hope that only God can give or on something else? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-14

Even Satan believes...

You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that- and shudder (jms2:19). As believers, do we believe or understand that Satan and his demons believe in God? They do- and why wouldn’t they? They understand the cosmic battle they are in, they know they face the Creator of the universe- and this great truth makes them shudder. It has been said, “that there are no atheists in Hell.” But their belief is a big difference from the kind we are called to have. Satan believes in God, he even believes in the birth, life, death and resurrection of Christ. But his belief is not a saving belief, his belief does not lead him to turn to God in repentance and to trust Christ for salvation. Our belief- our true saving belief involves not only an intellectual acceptance of God and Jesus. But it also involves our trusting and commitment to trust Jesus as our Savior and Lord. Christ is always petitioning to our Father for us... “If I (we) could hear Jesus praying for me (us) in the next room, I (we) would not fear a million enemies. Yet, distance makes no difference. He is praying for me (us)”(R.M.M’Cheyne). Do we truly understand the spiritual battle that we face every day? Remember: Jesus is always praying for us as we face the troubles and trials that Satan presents us with each day. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-12

The pursuit happiness

Happy is the man who has the God of Jacob as his helper (psm146:5). Have you ever wondered why Thomas Jefferson inserted the words in the American Declaration of Independence,”the pursuit of happiness”? We do have the right to pursue happiness. God has given us that right or at least the freedom to pursue happiness. But our problem us that this has become our primary purpose in life, we spend our whole life frantically pursuing it. Looking for happiness in the next best things (cars, vacation, phones, TV’s etc). But in the end, our search end in disillusionment. Our happiness is a byproduct of something greater, and not an end in itself. Our happiness cannot be pursued and caught anymore than one can pursue a sunny day, putting it in a bottle- saving it for a rainy day. True happiness come from a different pursuit- our pursuit of God. The Bible tells us, “You will see Me and find Me, when you Earth for Me with all your heart”(jer29:13). Only God can give us true happiness. “Contentment with the divine will is the best remedy we can apply to (our) misfortune”(W.Temple). It has been said that,”Happiness is a journey, not the destination”(unkn). So... what are you pursuing? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-11

Remembering 9/11

We are receiving a Kingdom which cannot be shaken (heb12:28). Most of us can remember the day, we have seen the TV images. Two plane slamming into the World Trade Center buildings, another at the Pentagon Building and the field in Pennsylvania. Terrorist killing thousands of innocent people. We all got a first hand look at the depths of how evil the human heart can be, as well as the uncertainty and fragility of life. But what lesson can we learn from such a great tragedy? I have to admit that I do not know. But I do know this, many people faced the shallowness and the emptiness of their lives maybe for the first time and as a result they turned to God. Many churches were full for the first time in a long time and many more people begun praying together. I think God would teach us all that no matter the evil in the hearts of men, that He is our only true hope (for this life and the life to come). Life has alway been uncertain, but on September 11, 2001, it made that uncertainty more obvious. Where will we turn for our security? My hope is that we put our trust for the future in the hands of Christ, for only He offers us, “a kingdom which cannot be shaken.” How shaken is your foundation as we face the uncertain days ahead? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-09

Like Job

I loathe my very life; therefore I will give free rein to my complaint and speak out in the bitterness of my soul (job10:1). Can you related to Job’s bitterness? I know I can, I may have not lost everything like Job. But the one thing I did lose was everything to me. And I like Job couldn’t understand why the God who I had worshipped and served so faithfully had done this to me. Have you ever felt this way? We know life can be hard, sometimes leaving us confused or like me, angry and bitter. Like job, have you ever told God exactly how you feel? I know I have- and it wasn’t pretty... Rest assured, God already knows how we feel, He knows our heart and mind and He doesn’t want us to pretend that everything is alright, when it obviously isn’t! The wonderful thing about Job pouring his heart out to God, is that God didn’t chastise Job for his honesty; God understood Job’s heartache, just as He understands ours. God stilled loved Job, just as He still loves us. Job didn’t keep complaining (as you and I are prone to do). Instead, Job turned to God in faith, and in time God gave him comfort and peace. God did not answer all of Job’s questions-but he did realize that God can be trusted even when we don’t understand why thing are going the way they are. “Our greatest problem in suffering is unbelief”(G.Thomas). Have a blessed day.

2019-09-08

God’s Standards

I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law (mt5:18). God’s moral standards have not changed. What was given in the Ten Commandments thousands of years ago still stand today. You know them,”thous shall not have any other gods, don’t murder, steal, lie, covent etc... Just because society has changed doesn’t mean that God has also changed. Our God is and will always be absolutely pure and these standards are a reflection of His righteousness. God has given us His standard- not to limit our enjoyment of life, but because He loves us and wants the best for us. Obeying is not always easy, but it is always worthwhile. The best thing we can do today is to follow every instruction that God brings to our attention. Walk in the light God has given us. Obey each of His commands. Go all in when it comes to complying to God’s will. What happens when lying, stealing, immorality and murder become society’s norm? CHAOS! Be the calm amongst the worlds chaos, lean on the moral standards that God has so lovingly given to us. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-07

Destinations

Man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgement (heb9:27). To some these may be scary words. But many people today are enticed by the idea that after we die, we will return again and again (reincarnation). But the Bible is very clear that reincarnation is not true, and that the life we are living is the only one we get on earth. Upon our passing our souls destination is one or two places. We will either spend eternity with God in Heaven or the place the Bible calls Hell, completely separated from God. This should be a sobering thought to us and to those who are around us. Some may ask, what difference does it make? First, we are reminded to live our lives rightly before others. If ever we are to trust Christ, the time is now, before it is too late. The Bible tell us, “Now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation”(2cor6:3). Second, knowing our future destination should give us a greater burden for those who haven’t made a commitment to Christ. “I (we) have a great need for Christ; I (we) have a great Christ for my (our) need (s)”(C.Spurgeon). So who will you share Christ with today? Have a blessed day.

2019-09-05

Family

Through wisdom a house is build, And by understanding it is established (pro24:3. Our families are the most important institution in the world. God set the foundation for families first. Our family institution was not invented by any sociologist or economist or government. Our families existed before any cities or government, before written language, nations, temples or churches. Our homes is where our characters and integrity are formed, our values are made clear and our goal for life are set in motion. Today, Satan has mounted an attack on our families units like never before in history. So, how do we protect our families from this great attack? Our best and only defense has been and will always be the Word of God. Set aside time to read the Bible together as a family. Plan family devotional time. Pray everyday for one another. Be vigilant against the forces that are set on pulling our families apart. But most of all, commit your marriage and families to Christ. Make Him the very center of our lives and our homes. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-04

God’s intercession for us

The Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groaning which we cannot be uttered (rms8:26). Have you ever been overwhelmed or confused that you didn’t know how to pray? Or have you ever had so much heartach and grief that you couldn’t put you emotions into word, much less pray about it? I think most of us have, well I have. So, the word of todays passage should bring us some comfort. “The Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us... in accordance with God’s will”(rms8:26-27). Think of it... even when we don’t know what to pray, the Holy Spirit knows what our needs are. It has been said,”Prayer us the language of a man burdened with a sense of need”(E.M.Bounds). But “intercession is taking issues that burden the hearts of men, as well as things that burden the heart of God”(H.Vaughan). The Spirit will make petitions and prayers for us in ways we will never understand this dside of Heaven. Turn to God no matter what you are facing, even if you didn’t know how or what to pray. Remember: the Spirit of God is interceding for you in according to the will of God. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-03

Spiritual Battles

Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you(jms4:7-8). Whenever God is at work, we can be sure Satan is mounting a counter attack. Satans goal has and will always be to stop whatever God is doing. We are not told specifically how Satan works, because our focus is on God. We are given two important truths concerning Satan (his name means “adversary”). The first is that Satan is real, and he wants you to walk away from God, and he will do whatever he can do get us to do that. The second truth is that Satan is a defeated foe. Understand that there are invisible activities taking place in the spiritual realm. We may not understand how demon forces are assaulting God’s purpose for our lives. With all of this fierce battling raging it is encouraging to us to remember that he’s a DEFEATED foe (col2:15). Satan may not be banished from the battle yet, but “we are more than conquerors through Christ Jesus”(rms8:37). “Thanks be to God which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ”(1cor15:57). Please don’t be deceived by Satan (that is what he wants). Stay close to Christ -because it has been said, “the closer you are to Him, the farther you are from the devil”(unkn). Have a blessed day.

2019-09-02

Ambassador’s of Christ

Whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciples (lk14:33). The story is told of a missionary living in the Far East. At the time Standard Oil Co. was look for someone to be a representative for them. A company representative offered the missionary 10k, to be their representative, but he promptly turned it down. So, the company offered him 25k, and again he turned it down. Lastly the company offered him 50k to be their representative, and again he turned the job down. After this last offer the missionary was asked, “What’s wrong?” The missionary replied, “Your price was right, but your job is too small.” God had called the man to be a missionary, and anything else is not worthy of the missionary consideration. So the question has to be asked, “What should we be for Christ?” Most of us are not called to be missionaries or even preachers, but we are called to be followers of Christ. We are called to be faithful where He puts us. We are called to be faithful in our jobs, in our homes, in our schools, our neighborhoods and our country. “Our assignment is not what we decide to do,but the discovery of who we are designed to be. We do not decide our mission; we discern it” (H.Vaughan). We are called to Christ’s ambassadors- wherever God may place us, nothing less is worthy of our consideration. Have a blessed day.

2019-09-01

Satan’s temptations

Let your soul delight itself in abundance (isa55:2). At the beginning of Christ’s ministry Satan tried to trap Him by using the same temptations he still uses on us. One of the many temptations Satan tried to use on Jesus was the promise of things. Jesus has been fasting for forty days and Satan tried to lure Christ into turning stones into bread. But Jesus replied, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by the word that proceeds from the mouth of God”(mt4:4). We each know how important bread (food) is...but it isn’t all important. The pursuit of recreation and pleasures have there place, but it shouldn’t have first place. The money we make is necessary, but our money should serve us,not the other way around. Our verse from Isiah, “Listen carefully to Me... and let your soul delight itself in abundance”(55:2). Isiah is not telling us to delight in the abundance of things (possessions), but we are to delight ourselves in the abundance of the Lord. Satan’s job is to offer any kind of substitute he can, using any way he can to draw us away form God. Please don’t fall pray to Satan’s traps! Have a blessed day.

2019-08-30

Our futures promise

Because I live, you will live also (jhn14:19). Statistics tell us that we spend billions (thats a “B”)of dollars each year on cosmetics, health spas, and gym equipment all in the pursuit of looking younger and living longer. But it’s been said, “that mortality is 100%, no one gets out of here alive”(unknown). As Christians we have a hope and a promise. One day our bodies will be “raised in glory”(1cor15:43). Can you imagine what that day will be like? Me either! We are told that, “For our citizenship is in heaven”(phil3:20). Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ”(titus2:13). Jesus is coming back and that is the hope of all ages. “Hope can see Heaven through the thickest clouds”(P.Brooks). Are you able to see Heaven is the clouds you are facing, I hope you can. So, regardless of the circumstances we face, regardless of what we are walking through right now, we must as Christians choose to embrace the hope and promise of Christ. It is our hope and promise of Heaven where we will spend eternity with Him. When our spirits choose hope it buoys us up and becomes one of our most powerful assets (unknown). How powerful is your asset? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-28

Christ’s second coming

At that time men will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory (mk13:26). We are told that Jesus’ first coming went almost unnoticed: Born in a small town to poor parents. His first cradle was a manger, surrounded by animals, his first visitors were shepherds. Even at the height of His ministry Jesus tells us, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nest, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head”(lk9:58). Oh, but the second coming of Christ- how different it will be. The Bible tells us,”Then EVERY eye will see Him”(rev1:7). Unlike His first coming where a select few greeted Him, at His second coming, ALL (that means everyone, no one will be excluded) will see and know Him. Christ will return with great power and glory, ready to set up His Kingdom of justice and righteousness. So, I’m not sure if this knowledge fills you with great joy or terror? But for those who have opened their hearts to Christ, this statement should fill us with great excitement. But for those who have chosen not to open their hearts to Christ this statement might fill them with great terror. If you are filled with terror, know that if Christ returned this morning, and you have not given your heart to Him... it’s already too late. So, I pray today that you make that commitment to Him today before it’s too late. But for those of us who have made that commitment to Christ, we have nothing to fear and Heaven awaits. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-26

The opposite of love...

Love is patient, love is kind....Its not rude, its not self-seeking, its not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrong doings (1cor13:4-5). You know the stories, maybe you’ve been there yourself, “I can’t live with him/her, but I can’t seem to live without him/her.” Maybe you have moved out only to turn around and move back in? Every marriage/relationship is different, and we shouldn’t overlook the uniqueness of every relationships. But what is the fundamental problem? Why don’t spouses get along? Let me ask this question: What is the opposite of love? It is not hate (although it may take this form), like some might think. The opposite of love is selfishness. When a husband or wife is more concerned only about their own individual desires, the stage is set for conflict. The Bible gives us another way- the way of Christ. True love, it says, we should be self-giving, not self-seeking. True love puts the need of the other first. “Learn not to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moments”(G.Sala). Begin a new page in your life and marriage by asking Christ to become the center of everything. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-24

Like Noah

By faith Noah... became an heir of righteousness which comes by faith (heb11:7). God had been telling the people of Noah’s time that, “My Spirit shall not shrive with man forever” (gen6:3). When Noah began and up till God closed the door on the Ark, people laughed and mocked Noah. They went on living their lives as if God had said nothing. God was speaking to the people but they ignored Him. God’s patience gave out-but by then it was too late. Men and women struggled for their lives once the rain began. Clinging to whatever they could until the waters of death reached up and drew them down. All were lost, people and animals alike. The only things left were those that were on the Ark. The people had their chance but because of their unbelief they perished. We cannot come to Christ unless The Spirit of God draws us. But if we ignore His warnings or promptings long enough- then one day He will no longer draw us. But by then it will be too late for us. Please don’t be like those in Noah’s day... let the Spirit of God draw you to Him, that you too will become an heir of righteousness. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-23

Hearing the message

Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ (rms10:17). There is a way to grow weak, it’s not difficult, all we have to do is stop eating and exercising. But no one in their right mind would do this willingly. Why, then, don’t we see the connection between our weakness of faith and our lack of spiritual food and exercise? Faith is our confidence in God. Unbelief is our confidence in something else. Every decision (good, bad or indifferent) in life is based either on our faith or our doubt. The person who doubts is weak and lacks spiritual food and motivation. That person sits listlessly afloat in his adversity. But the faith-filled person is energized. He has confidence in God and his God given mission which imparts purpose, passion, and gives strength to him. Our faith in God is the greatest empowering force known to man and it can conquer any obstacle. So, what is our main spiritual food God gives to strengthen us? It’s the Bible, the Word of God. Read it, study it, meditate on it. Then watch your faith grow! Have a blessed day.

2019-08-22

A lamp to my feet

Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path (psm119:105). As Christians, we have only one authority, one compass: the Word of God. We are surrounded every day, every minute by thousands of different voices all calling for our attention. But of all these voices, we have only one that will tell us the truth. That truth is the written Word of God, which is given to us by God that we know how to live and what to believe. The Bible tells us, “The entrance of Your Words give light”(psm119:130). “The is no medicine like hope, no incentive so great, and no tonic so powerful as expecting of something better tomorrow”(O.Marden). Abraham Lincoln wrote in a letter to a friend, “I am profitably engaged in reading the Bible. Take all of this Book upon reason that you can and balance upon faith, and you will live and die a better man.” No other Book can and will give us the hope we need to live our lives in the midst of a world filled with hopelessness and confusion. No other Book can and will give us direction we yearn for among the distraction from the voices that cry out for our attention. Is the Bible the one sure source to guide you in this unsure world? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-19

Armor of God

Put the full armor of God on, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes (eph6:11). Some may doubt Satan exists, even more will doubt that he’s our enemy- DON’T. Satan is not the cute cartoon character, standing with his red suit and pitchfork. Satan is absolutely malicious and evil, who has a tremendous influence in this world. The Bible tells us, “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1pt5:8). Satan is strong and he hates us so much that he will do anything to make us stumble. But God did not leave us defenseless. God has given us His armor (it is so strong that Satan can not penetrate it). The apostle Paul gives us a description of this armor (Ephesians 6:10-18). One of our greatest sources of strength against our adversities is knowing our position “in Christ.” We can find refuge “in Christ” in our times of assault (from Satan). Knowing our position will give us an understanding that He will see us through our difficulties. Knowing that Christ is not only “with us” but also “in us” is a huge comfort. So, remember that God has given a way to fight Satan’s attacks, and more important- Christ is with us in the midst of these attacks. Have you put your armor on today? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-16

Doing God’s will...

Do the will of God from the heart (eph6:6). The word of God tells us to seek Gods will for our lives. “Do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is”(eph5:17). In doing this some think God’s will is meant to be harsh or may even joyless, intent on making us miserable. But this just isn’t true, God’s will comes from God’s love. When we love someone, we don’t want to make them miserable, we want what’s going to make them happy. God loves us and because of that love for us, He care about what happens to us. He loves us too much to let us walk around aimlessly through life without any meaning or purpose. So, it does matter where or what you do for a living, you should be doing it with all your heat. The Bible tells us, “You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy:(psm16:11). “Concentration on your purpose gives passion, and passion imparts energy. Find a man excited about his mission, and you will find a motivated man. Focusing on your God given assignment will energize you”(H.Vaughan). Covent God’s will for your life more than anything. To know God’s will-and to do it- brings life’s greasiest joy. Are you doing God’s will or your own? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-15

Work

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not to men (col3:23). Most of us like our jobs, some of us might even love our jobs. But even the most interesting jobs has it’s moments of routine or drudgery. Some of us maybe so good at our difficult jobs, that to an outsider looking in...it looks easy. But no job is perfect, and no position (high or low on the totem pole) can insulate us completely from life’s tensions and conflicts. The Bible gives us two important truths about our work. One, it acknowledges that “work-is work.” After Adam and Eve sinned, God cast them out of the Garden of Eden and told them “by the sweat of your brows you will eat your food: Gen3:19). In other words... you don’t work-you don’t eat! But the Bible also tells us that God has given our work to us and that it has dignity and value in His eyes, and it should in ours as well. So no matter your job or position, no matter how enjoyable of difficult it may be, whether it is easy or hard, no matter if your inside in a office or outside, “work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” It can make all the difference- in our attitude and our output. Are you working for the Lord or yourself? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-14

Faith produces patience

The testing of your faith produces patience (jms1:3). D.L.Moody was fond of pointing out that there are three kinds of faith in Christ: struggling faith, clinging faith and resting faith. Christ’s desire is for us to have resting faith, the kind of faith that totally trust Him, not matter what trials we are facing. Our anxieties depletes us, but faith builds us up. Our doubts will destroy us, but courage substances us. Our uncertainties breed fear, but trust brings us comfort. Faith is simply having confidence in the very character of Christ. And our confidence means that we can and will take God at His every word. Our bible contains many instructions, God’s instructions are His directives- His commands. Following God’s instructions will fortify our souls. Our obedience builds our faith and our success in the faith realm will build up our spiritual man. Our repeated victories only serve to increase our confidence in Christ. Our obedience does bring about blessings, and our blessings are not only reaping the fruit of our actions. It is the unseen reinforcement of our inner man that comes from only following Christ. So, the next time our faith is challenges and we do not know what to do, do all that God has instructed, and in faith your next step will become evident. I pray that we all have the resting faith that God desires us to have. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-12

God’s placement

Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you... pray to the Lord for it (jer29:7). We are not where we are by accident; we are here by design. Our country, our city, our family, our job and or our school-we are here because God has placed us here and He never does anything without a reason. We are where we are by God’s design and purpose and He wants to use us right where we are. The Bible tell us that the prophet Jeremiah had every reason not to seek prosperity and peace in the land where he was living, captured by his enemy, moved to a land that was not his home (exiled). But, yet God wanted Jeremiah to pray for those who had captured I Him. We are like Jeremiah, in a land that is not our final home. The Bible tells us, this world is not our final home. Christ has given us “an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade- kept in heaven for us”(1pt1:4). “The Spirit-filled life is not a special deluxe edition of Christianity. It is part and parcel of the total plan of God for His people (A.W.Tozer). So until God has called us home He wants to use us right where we are... in our families, our work place, our communities... in the midst of this unbelieving world. Do those around us see God or just another version of this world? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-08

The same yesterday, today and forever!

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever (heb13:8). We should find comfort in these words... But people want to talk about God being a God of wrath in the Old Testament and a God of love and peace in the New Testament. But the truth of it is God is the same through out the whole bible. The Old Testament and the New Testament tell of God’s holiness and purity- and how He punishes those who rebel against Him. Some of our strongest warnings of judgement come directly from the lips of Jesus (mt7:14). The Bible encourages us to take joy in reading God’s word (sadly most don’t). “This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word has quickened me”(psm119:50). We should find delight (which is sheer joy) in God’s Word. It gives us guidance and provides us with wisdom. The Bible also tells us: Thy words were found and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me a joy and rejoicing in mine heart”(jer15:16). When we internalize God’s word it revives our soul. It brings incredible joy, which will in turn boost our energy. Never forget: “There’s power and strength in the word of God.” Have you read your bible lately? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-07

Our conscience

The blood of Christ...(will) cleanse our consciences (heb9:14). Everyone has a conscience that sits as a judge over us: every word, every thought and every action we take. Our conscience can be sensitive, under developed or distorted depending on the way we have used or abused it. Our conscience needs to be cleansed by the purifying work of the Holy Spirit, because Satan can and will twist our conscience if are not yielding to the voice of Christ. God uses our conscience to warn us of danger. Each one of us have experienced the backlash of guilt after we have sinned. “If you want to be distressed, look within. If you want to be defeated, look back. If you want to be distracted, look around. If you want to be delighted, look up. If you want to be delivered, look to Christ”(unknown). Is God speaking to you about something that isn’t right in your life? Something that you may be doing that may be dishonoring to Christ? Please don’t ignore that still small voice over the clambering of this world. Face your sin, confess it and never touch it again. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-06

Renewing our minds

The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?(jer17:9). Our world is full of discouragement and depressing facts and opinions. Our heart is a storehouse of evil, “Fornication, murder, theft, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, blasphemy, pride- all of these thing come from the heart”(mk7:21). Many of us go to church and outwardly live a good life, but we are not living for Christ, we are living for ourselves. Even the hearts that are redeemed by Christ’s love can be unbelieving blind, proud, rebellious, idolatrous and cold toward God. Jesus died on the cross to show us the seriousness of our hears condition. He came to cleanse our hearts. He wants to give us a heart-softening picture of God’s divine and infinite love, and to woo us to Himself when the world temps us to stray. Our minds and heart can be renewed day by day as we deliberately select the things we meditate and obsess about. Is your heart focused on the things of God or has the things of this world led you astray. Turn to the Great Physician for the renewing of your mind and the healing of your heart- no matter the condition it may be in. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-05

Declaring the glory of God

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands (psm19:1). Have you ever wondered why Christians should not practice astrology- I mean millions of people do (maybe you have or know someone who does). The first and the most important reason why we should not practice astrology is because the Word of God tells us not to. Astrology is a form of fortune-telling which was a common practice in the ancient world. The Bible calls it a “detestable practice”(duet18:2). God did not give us the stars to give us insight to the future, He gave us them, to be a witness of His power and His glory. The second reason we are not to practice astrology’s because we do not need to. In His Word, God tells us everything we need to know about the future. God may not tell us what will happen tomorrow or next week, but if He did, He would want us learn to trust Him or seek His guidance in life. “Active faith gives thanks for a promise even though it is not yet performed, knowing that God contracts are as good as cash”(M.Henry). The Bible tell us that our future in Gods hands and someday (maybe soon) Christ will return or call us home. This is all we need to know- a promise we can bank on. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-04

Calling us home

Our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior (phil3:20). There is a story that is told of a widow and her son who lived in a miserable attic. She had married against her parents wishes and moved to a foreign land. While in the foreign land her husband dies. Her husband did not have any provisions for her or the son. It was very difficult for her to make ends meet. One day in the mail the women received a hand written letter in a handwriting that she knew well. Opening the letter with trembling hands-enclosed was a check and a note with just two words on it: “Come Home.” Someday all of us that know Christ will have a similar experience. We do not know when our call may come. It may come in the middle of our work, unexpectedly or sudden. It may come after weeks or months of a long illness. But one thing for sure, a loving hand will be laid on our shoulder and this similar brief message will be given: “Come Home.” Hope means hoping when things are hopeless, or it is no virtue at all... As long as matters are really hopeless, hope is mere flattery or platitude; it is only when everything is hopeless that hope begins to be a strength”(G.K.Chesterton). Are you ready to be called home? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-03

Telling a lie...

Each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor (eph4:25). Have you ever wondered why its wrong to tell a lie (maybe you haven’t)? The first reason is because God commands us to tell the truth (plain and simple). The Bible tells us, “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor”(exo20:16). The second reason is because that a lie (big or little), without exception hurts someone. We may never know the impact that our untruth (lie) will have on the person or their reputation after we have said it- there is no taking them (it) back. Do we honestly want our children or grandchildren growing up to think that its ok to fib (lie) or to not tell the truth? Or do we honestly want our unbelieving family or friends to think Christ doesn’t mean anything to us? The third reason telling a lie is wrong is because it hurts the person who tells it. Our lies make us less concerned about God’s truth, and others will eventually realize that we cant be trusted. “I have never been hurt by anything I didn’t say” (C.Coolidge). Please don’t compromise on the truth. But, instead commit every part of our words and life to Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-08-02

Compassion

You,O Lord, are a God full of compassion...abundant in mercy and truth (psm86:15). The word compassion comes from two Latin words meaning “to suffer with.” It is definded as a sympathetic consciousness of others distress with a desire to alleviate. In other words, compassion is having the desire and ability to aid others who are in hardship. Human surffer is rampant today. We see it on every news station and in social media- people torn apart by wars, famine, or injustice, but there are those around us who suffer from: loneliness, fear, rejection, grief, dysfunctional families, illnesses or addiction. But thank goodness God has compassion for us- in other words He suffers with us. He knows what we are going through, He knows our hurts and He cares. The greatest act of compassion can be found in the cross, it is where our Christ suffered for us. He endured ours sins penalty so we wouldn’t have to. Jesus calls us to have compassion on others-“Since the closest friendships are born in adversity, use your problems to minister to other hurting people. Problems are the glue that joins hearts together”(H.Vaughan). Are you sharing compassion to someone in need? Have a blessed day.

2019-08-01

God is God...

I have loved you with an everlasting love (jer31:3). A year and a half ago this became my life verse. I have probably read or heard it a hundred times, but it wasn’t until the passing of my only daughter did this verse hit home. In the deepest despair of my grief and loss did I find a necklace with this scripture on it. This scripture reminds me of two things: The first is that no matter what I was facing, no matter how deep I was hurting from this great loss, God loves me everlasting. He doesn’t just love me for yesterday or for today- but He loves me into eternity. And this brought me some comfort. The second thing that this verse has taught me is that a mothers love for her children does not stop at the passing of her children or the passing of time. A mothers love for her children starts before they are born and doesn’t stop because of life’s tragedy. “God has put us in exactly the right crucible to burn up what He sees that needs to be burnt up. Many think ‘victory’ means getting your circumstances put right. No! True triumph is is within- when in the midst of our circumstances the Spirit of God can so energize you and strengthen you in the Spirit, that we can stand quiet in the thick of it all and say, ‘God is God’, and know that all that we are held by Him- which is infinity better than all that we are trying to hold together instead.” Can you say “God is God” with the circumstances in your life? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-31

Come near to God

Come near to God and he will come near to you (jms4:8). Theses words are an amazing encouragement to us. They mean that we can come close to God with the assurance that He will come close to us- close enough that we become conscious of His presence. But for most of us this doesn’t come easy. Life has may distractions-way too many! And the last thing we have time to do is getting alone with God. “Focusing on the Master is the key to mastering your focus. Whatever breaks your focus has mastered you. Turmoil, problems people, temptation and a host of other joy-robbers will assault you to divert your thinking, but you alone are responsible for you pay attention to”(H.Vaughan). Maybe we need to adjust our priorities. May we have say no to certain activities. Whatever it takes, make time to be alone with God. And never forget: God wants our fellowship and he has done everything to make it possible. He has forgiven us of our sins at the cost of His Son Jesus. He has given us His Word and the amazing privilege of prayer and worship. He has promised that He will come near to us when we come near to Him. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-30

Talking to God

This is the confidence we have in approaching God; that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears from us (1jhn5:14). Praying is not something mysterious or secret; prayer is simply talking to God. And the wonderful this is- God wants us to talk to Him. Why? Because He loves us and He promises to hear us when we pray. We are able to pray directly to God, because Jesus has removed the barrier between God and us, the barrier of our sin. Our sin separates us from God and it is for this reason Jesus dies on the cross for us. When we commit our lives to Christ, God gives us the awesome privilege and honor of approaching “the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need”(Hebrew 4:16). “In the day of prosperity, we have many refuges to resort to; but in the day of adversity, only one. And one is enough- when its the right one”(H.Bonar). If you find praying awkward or intimidation, remember this: God promises to hear you-and He can not lie. Trust in His promise and bring everything to Him in prayer. Have a bless day.

2019-07-29

A successful marriage

He who loves his wife loves himself (eph5:28). I believe there are three elements to a successful marriage: The first is love- not just an emotional feeling or a physical attraction, but a deep commitment to put the other person first. The bible defines “love” beautifully in 1Corinthians 13. In it we find how God defines “love.” Men are to love their wives as Christ loved the church. So, what women wouldn’t respond to such a selfless expression of this kind of love? The second element is maturity. Too many couples are getting a divorce at the first signs of any kind of trouble. Maturity mean a willingness to act responsible (keeping your big girl/boy pants on when tough times challenge our relationship) and not to take the easy way out. And the final element needed is faith. Most married couples will tell that marriage is difficult at best, but without Christ at the center of a marriage and a home, it will become even more difficult. Putting it this way: “It takes three to make a great marriage- you, your spouse and Christ.” It has been said that seldom has a marriage failed when the husband and wife pray and worship God together.” Does your marriage have these elements? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-27

Words hidden in our heart

The grass withers, the flowers fades, but the word of our God stands forever (isa40:8). This story is told of a missionary in China, who was inprisioned by the Japanese during WWII, she managed to take a forbidden copy of the gospel of John with her. Each night when she went to bed, she carefully pulled it from its hiding pace and under the covers of her bed, she would memorize one verse each night. She did this every night until the day she was freed. When the prisoners were released, most shuffled out, but the missionary was so chipper that someone said that she must have been brainwashed. A “Life” magazine reporter who had interviewed her said, “She’s been brainwashed for sure. God has washed her brain.” We have the Word of God at our fingertips. It’s easier now than every before to read and memorize God’s Word. Take time each day to read and memorize one verse. It will probably be hard at first, but as you repeat the verse over and over, you will find that they begin to take root in your soul. “Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You”(Psm119:11). The amazing thing about memorizing God’s Word is that when life becomes troublesome or when adversity hit us, those verses will come back to us and gives us encouragement and hope. What verses have you hidden in your heart? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-26

Temptations

Jesus said to him, ”Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” Then the devil left him (mt4:10-11). It has been asked, “How do we know if the devil is tempting us or if its only our own desires?” But the truth of it is that we don’t always know when the devil is directly tempting us of only working in the background. But our basic issue is the same: Satan is the source of all our temptations (mt4:3). And Satan greatest desire is to get us to turn our backs on God. The only reason he is able to succeed in our lives is because we let him-and we let him because we are weak in those areas in which he attacks us. It is for this reason that we need Christ. Jesus can give us the strength we need to resist Satan’s temptations. “He give the power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increase the strength”(isa40:29). Jesus points the way to victory: using the truth of God’s Word to counteract Satan’s lies. Three times Satan attacked Jesus with almost overwhelming temptations- and all three times Jesus replied with Scripture. I once heard someone say, “When the devil comes knocking, send Jesus to answer the door.” Who are you sending to the door when the devil comes knocking? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-25

Upside down world

God is not ashamed to be called their God (heb11:16). It is said that we live in an upside-down world, and maybe you would agree. People today hate when they should show love, quarrel when the should be friendly, fight when they should be peaceful, wound when they should heal, steal when they should share and do wrong when they should do right. When I was a kid, we had this toy clown with a weight in its head. So, no matter how you placed it, the clown would invariably assume its up-side down position. It could be placed on its feet or on its side, but as soon as it was let go- it would flip to its head. My childhood clown is a great illustration of why Christians seem to be misfits in our world. To an up-side down non-believing world, a right side up follower of Christ seems upside down. To the nonbeliever, the true Christian is an oddity or abnormal. But by Gods amazing grace this isn’t the whole picture, all around us are people who sense something is wrong with our tops-turvy world, and they yearn to be right side up. Will you be the one to pray for them and be the example of Christ that we are called to be? “It is universally recognized that what we do matters less than why we do it”(J.Stott). Be the Christian you are called to be. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-24

Being anxious or trusting

Neither death nor life...nor things present nor things to come... shall be able to separate us from the love of God (rms8:38-39). It has been said that there are two ways to respond to adversity: with discouragement or with trust. When we turn to our problems in discouragement, it only makes things worse; with discouragement we can become bitter, angry, jealous, revengeful and on and on... some may even try to escape through the use of drugs and alcohol. But none of these can solve our problem (it may even create more). I think God has a better way for us- the way of trust. Sometimes He will show us that we were in the wrong (the cause of our own problems). When this is the case, we need to confess it and turn away from it seeking forgiveness. But sometime life happens and the problem are just life- in which we can only accept what is happening and ask God to help us endure it and triumph over it.”I am no longer anxious about anything as I realize the Lord is able to carry out His will, and His will is mine. It makes no matter where He places me, or how. That is rather for Him to consider than for me; for in the easiest positions He must give me His grace, and in the most difficult, His grace is sufficient”(H.Taylor). Have a blessed day.

2019-07-21

What to do when our faith is weak

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you (eph3:16). Some may have wondered what it takes to make our faith stronger? The first thing is to be sure of your commitment to Christ. Have you made a solid commitment to Jesus as your Savior and Lord? When our faith is weak its because we have never clearly taken this step. Second, we need to build our faith on God’s Word (which for some this is the hardest step, because of laziness). Reading and learning the Bible strengthens our faith. We learn of the love God has for us and we learn how God wants us to live. When we don’t have a firm knowledge or foundation of God’s Word- our faith will always be vague and uncertain. Lastly, we need to draw strength from fellow believers. “A friend loveth at all times and a brother is born for adversity”(pro17:17). Find a fellowship of believers were the Word of God is taught, that has Bible Studies and prayer groups, all of these will help you in your growth. Please don’t sit on your blessed assurance, thinking that your faith is good. Get out there and use the resources that God has provided for you, to move forward with confidence and joy! Have a blessed day.

2019-07-20

Temptations

Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace (1tim2:22). When you were a kid, did you ever play with magnets? You remember the closer they got to each other the harder it was to pull apart. Temptation can be like that for us- the closer we get, the stronger the attraction becomes. And if we are not careful it will become almost impossible for us to pull away from our temptations. So how do we avoid our temptations? Our first step is that when we are tempted to sin- we are to flee (turn away) from it. Don’t toy with it in your mind- get as far away from it as possible. Some have had to change jobs, or friends to keep from something or someone that was tempting them to do something wrong. This being the only way for them to not be tempted and sinning. “What I see affects what I think. What I think affects how I feel. How feel affects what I do” (H.Vaughan). What will it take for you to overcome the daily temptations that you face? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-19

You are a bought what a great price

You were redeemed... with the precious blood of Christ (1pt1:18-19). The word redeemed means “to buy back”- to recover by paying a price. The word redeem can be illustrated be the ancient world through the position of a slave who was captured in battle or enticed into serving one who is not his legal master. His real master intent on recovering his slave’s service and love, would buy him back (redeem him from the enemy) at a great cost. This is what God did for us. Captured by Satan and enticed into his service, we were slave to sin, without any hope of deliverance. But God still loves us and He is determined to restore us to His household. By the death on the cross, Jesus paid the full price for our deliverance, one greater than our full value. He did it solely because He loves us. Now we have been redeemed. “To be in Christ- this is redemption; but for Christ to be in you- that is sanctification (setting apart)! To be in Christ- that makes you fit for Heaven; but for Christ to be in you- that makes you fit for earth! To be in Christ- that changes you destination; but for Christ to be in you- that changes your destiny! To one makes Heaven your home- the other makes this world His workshop”(I.Thomas). Have a blessed day.

2019-07-17

Sin’s power

What kind of people ought yoWhat kind of people ought you be? You ought to live holy and godly lives (1pt3:11). Have you ever wondered why we cant be sinless in this life? Or why cant we be perfect? I think one reason us because sin has weakened us so much that we don’t have the strength to overcome its power. Like a deadly disease sin infects every part of us: our body, our mind, our emotions, our relationships, our motives- everything! When we come to Christ another spiritual power takes up residence within us: the Holy Spirit. Take sin as seriously as God does; be on guard against it, resist its tug and fight its power. But most of all take the Holy Spirit seriously; call on Him to help overcome sin’s power and live a holy and godly life. “Victory rises out of death. Christ went down into the tomb, but three days later he came out. Christ so completely identified with us that he took us to the Cross with Him, buried us with Him and resurrected us with Himself, ‘Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we should walk in newness of life’(rms6:4). Jesus did not come to ‘mend me.’ He came to ‘end me’- the dominance of my sinful self” (R.Hession). Have a blessed day.

2019-07-16

A pillar of a cloud

The Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way (ex13:21). In life we all face clouds. The are just part of life. But we need not to be depressed by them. Just as the clouds protect us from the heat and harmful rays of the sun, life’s clouds can reveal the glory of God. And from its towering heights we can hear God speaking to us. We are like the children of Israel- traveling to the Promise Land. The Bible tells us that as they traveled,”The Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way.” Maybe like the Israelites, you are in the wilderness. It maybe the wilderness of the death of a loved one, maybe you are facing a broken marriage, maybe a financial reversal, or maybe a major disappointment. Or maybe your wilderness is of doubt or sin. It has been said, “The Christian’s midnight is brighter that the sinners noon”(unkn). Remember God is with you, He is there to encourage and guide you through the wilderness. He brought the Israelites through the desert wilderness- and He can so the same for you. Never forget: “He is the LIVING God, and steadfast forever”(dan6:26). The question has to be asked, “Who is leading you or are you just wandering?” Have a blessed day.

2019-07-15

Angels

Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation (heb1:14). We have heard the stories- he or she was miraculously delivered from death. Some even stating,”It’s as if an angel intervened to protect him/her.” You may have asked or even wondered yourself, “Do angels still do things like that today? The answer is Yes, angels are just as active today as in biblical times. Angels are spiritual beings that seldom assume physical forms (this is why we are largely unaware of them). “The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us, and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us and we only know them once they are gone”(G.Elloit). I am pretty sure once we get to heaven, we will be amazed how often God’s angels have intervened to help or to protect us. Scripture tells us that God, “will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all ways” (psm91:11). It is not merely luck when we are delivered from difficult situations- God is protecting and preserving you. Please don’t miss out on the lessons God wants to teach you from your experiences. We should be thanking God for His protection and His lessons and not put too much emphasis on His angels. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-14

Songs of deliverance

You shall surround me with songs of deliverance (psm32:7). Someone has once said, that when faith is strong, our troubles become trifles. Does that mean our troubles are not real or that we act as if our troubles don’t exist? The truth is God takes our troubles seriously, so much so that He sent Jesus to deal with their root cause- which is sin. Remember- just as Jesus overcame death, He will help us overcome our troubles (if we let Him). Even when we are in the midst of troubles Jesus is able to “turn their (our) mourning into joy” (jer31:13). How can this happen? When we look to God in faith and remind ourselves that God has not abandoned us and that He has plans for our future. “To worship is to quicken conscience, by the holiness of God, to feed the mind with the truth of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God, to devote the will to the purpose of God”(W.Temple). So, are you trying to handle your trials and trouble in your power or are you allowing God to “surround you songs of deliverance? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-13

Nuclear fission

He who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life (jhn5:24). Most of us know very little about nuclear fission or what is use to make a atomic bomb... but you can bet we believe in them! But how can we believe in something like necular fission if we don’t know anything about it? The answer is obvious! If others understand it and have great knowledge in how nuclear fission works (the good in our power plants and the bad in the bombs it make) we accept their testimony as a reliable witness, no questions asked. I spend each morning reading a book- The Bible. When I read it, I learn of the great acts of kindness of God, of His love for us, of the many men and women who spent their lives serving and following Him. Each word speaks as a reliable witness to each word written. I may not know or understand everything in God’s word, but i know Him and trust Him because of what I have read of Him in the Bible. The knowledge of men can be found in the colleges and the universities we have, but wisdom can only be found in the Word of God. “Men may acquire knowledge, but wisdom is a gift direct from God”(B.Jones Sr.). I may never understand Nuclear fission but I am grateful that I know my Heavenly Father who loves me in spite of myself! Have a blessed day.

2019-07-12

God’s faithfulness

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassion never fails (lam3:22). Have you ever embarrassed or hurt someone you love? Or maybe someone you love has hurt or embarrassed you. Did you stop loving them or them you? NO, there might have been some disappointment, but you didn’t stop loving them. In a much great way (we may not understand) God loves us even when we mess up or disappoint Him. God loves us in the good times and in our bad times. God’s love for us goes beyond what we see or understand. God’s love for us is constant never wavering (even if we do). God loves us even when we don’t love ourselves. Life will make us question the love we have for God, but there is never a question of God’s love for us. “Life need not be easy to be joyful. Joy is not the absence of trouble, but the presence of Christ”(W.Vander Haven). We will all face times of trouble , but will it drive us away from the love of God or will it draw us closer to God in trust and faith? Only you can make this decision. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-11

The Bible

Prophecy never had its origins in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit (2pt1:21). Our Bible is an amazingly remarkable book for many reasons, the most important reason of all is that it is God’s Word. It is not just another ancient book of human wisdom; our Bible was written by people who were “carried along by the Holy Spirit.”God gave us His Word so we could know Him and understand His will for our lives. Please don’t discredit the Bible because it was written so long ago. Understand, God has not changed, our human nature will not change and neither will our need for Christ and His saving grace. From Genesis to Revelation, our Bible points to Christ, whom God sent to us to save us from ALL our sins (past, present and future). “It is a fact that those whose lives are daily being conformed to the Word and purposes of God will be given the ability to see issues more plainly”(M.Watts). Let the Bible’s truths become part of your life every day. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-10

Church membership

Love the brotherhood of believers (1pt2:17). You have probably been told at sometime or another that there are no perfect churches- but if you do find one, the moment we step inside it is no longer perfect. We are not perfect and we don’t become perfect when we become a church member. But the question has been asked, “Can a person be a Christian without going to church?” The answer is “yes and no.” Yes, because once a person has excepted Christ as Savior you can never lose it. The Bible tells us, “no one can snatch them away from me” (jhn10:28). But when come to Christ, we become part of His family. Every true believer becomes our brother or sister in Christ- and we need each other. “Life sometimes bring things our way that causes us to lose our equilibrium. But godly people can help us as we regain our footing and proper perspective” (H.Vaughan). Don’t use a churches imperfections as an excuse to stay away. “Man is made for society and Christians for the communion of the saints (M.Henry). Ask God to use the preaching of His Word and your fellowship with others to make you more like Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-09

Strangers in this world

I urge you as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires (1pt2:11). People from other countries are rarely shown a welcome mat anymore, for that matter I think any stranger is not shown a welcome mat. They are more likely accepted reluctantly, some may even become victims of discrimination, rejection or intolerance. Our verse tells us that Christians are “aliens and stranger in the world.” Our home is not here but in Heaven. As long as we are here on Earth, we don’t exactly fit in. Our customs are different our goals are different, our ways of living are different and our concerns are different. As we follow Christ (and not the ways of this world), we can find that we are scorned, rejected and even persecuted for the cause of Christ. We shouldn’t be surprised because Christ did warn us, “If they persecute Me they will also persecute you:(jhn15:20). “Extraordinary afflictions are not always the punishment of extraordinary sin but sometimes the trial of extraordinary graces”(M.Henry). I know that sometimes we forget, but our citizenship is Heaven and someday we will be in our true home in Heaven with our Christ who paid the price that we may be there. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-08

Idols...

You cannot serve God and manna (lk16:13). The Bible warns us about idolatry. In fact one of the Ten Commandments warns us, “You shall not make for yourself a carved image...you shall not bow down to them nor serve them”(ex20:4-5). But what is an idol? An idol is something or someone we worship and serve in place of God. An idol can be the money we have, the things we own, things of pleasure or even our success- anything that we let control our lives. These things are not necessarily wrong in themselves, but they become our idols when we make them the focus of our lives. The Word of God warns us of idols for a couple of reasons. The first reason is that idols are false. Our idols cannot save us or change our lives for the better. The second reason is our idols cut us off from God. When we substitute our idols for God, it turns us away from God. What idols have taken God’s rightful place in your life? Please put them where they belong, and place God in His rightful place (first) in your life. The Bible tells us, ”You shall have no other gods before Me”(ex20:3). Have a blessed day.

2019-07-07

The best laid plans

As for God, His way is perfect (psm18:30). Things didn’t always work out the way the Apostle Paul had planned. Wanting to preach in Asia Minor, he was “forbidden by the Holy Spirit”(acts16:6). Heading to the new converts in Philippi, he was thrown in prison (acts16:11-24). Desiring to reach those in Thessalonica, he was accused of “turning the world upside down”(acts17:6), forcing him to leave. But no matter the situation for Paul, God was in control. Paul couldn’t preach in Asia Minor because God was opening the doors for him in Europe. The time spent in prison, allowed the jailer and his family to be converted. Forced to leave Thessalonica, allowed Paul to share the gospel in the next town over receiving him with open arms. If things didn’t always go as Paul had planned, why would we think it be any different for us? “God will not give an easy journey to the Promise Land, but He will give us a safe one”(A.Bonar). Things may not work out the way we have planned, but if we commit our ways to God and follow where He leads- we will discover that God’s plans are AWAYS better. So the question has to be asked, “who’s plans are you following? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-06

Anger...

As churning the milk produces butter, and as twisting the nose produces blood, so stirring up anger produces strife (prov30:30). Why do you think God takes anger so seriously? I believe there are a couple of reasons. The first is because of what it does to others. When we are angry and lash out at others, we hurt them, and this creates conflict with them. This conflict is wrong, God loves both parties equally- so when we hurt someone with our anger we are hurting someone whom God loves very much. The second reason God hates anger is because of what it does to us. When we are angry it cuts us off from others- besides who wants to be around someone who will explode at any moment? When we are angry we become resentful, bitter and unloving. But most of all when we are angry, it cuts us off from God. We become so preoccupied with our own self and the anger we are carrying that we forget about God. “A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes”(Scottish Proverb). So, commit your anger to Christ and seek His loving forgiveness. Ask Him to show you how to release your anger no matter what brought it on, and the wonderful thing is He will, if you let Him. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-05

Yes, no, or wait...

Let us... come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy (heb4:16). Did you know that God always answers our prayers? He may not always answer them the way we desire but He does answer. He may answer not always answer with a “yes”, He may answer with a “no or wait”- but He always answers. The apostle Paul pleaded and prayed that God would remove his “thorn in the flesh” (most likely some type of painful illness). But God answered Paul with a “no” (2cor12:7-10). God actually had something better for Paul- God wanted Paul to have a deeper dependence on Him and His grace. Now, think of Christ, praying in agony as He faced the cross: “If it be possible, let this cup pass from Me”(mt26:39). Again God answered with a “no”- because their was no other way for our salvation to be won. “God has never promised to solve all of our problems. But He did promise to answer our questions...He has promise to go with us”(E.Elliott). God knows what is best for us- even if the answer is “no or wait.” His answer is always perfect even if we don’t understand. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-05

Yes, no, or wait...

Let us... come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy (heb4:16). Did you know that God always answers our prayers? He may not always answer them the way we desire but He does answer. He may answer not always answer with a “yes”, He may answer with a “no or wait”- but He always answers. The apostle Paul pleaded and prayed that God would remove his “thorn in the flesh” (most likely some type of painful illness). But God answered Paul with a “no” (2cor12:7-10). God actually had something better for Paul- God wanted Paul to have a deeper dependence on Him and His grace. Now, think of Christ, praying in agony as He faced the cross: “If it be possible, let this cup pass from Me”(mt26:39). Again God answered with a “no”- because their was no other way for our salvation to be won. “God has never promised to solve all of our problems. But He did promise to answer our questions...He has promise to go with us”(E.Elliott). God knows what is best for us- even if the answer is “no or wait.” His answer is always perfect even if we don’t understand. Have a blessed day.

2019-07-04

Chief companion

Dear friends... I urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints(Jude:3). Some have asked or maybe you have wondered, “Is the gospel of Jesus Christ complete or is there anything else the Bible needs to tell us? Have you ever had someone come to your door wanting to talk to you about their particular religion? But after listening for a few minutes you realize that their particular religion has more to add to the gospel? After probing a little farther about the God and salvation of their Bible, you find out that their salvation is not enough; their salvation is found in a newly discovered book written by their founder that supersedes our bible. Let’s be VERY CLEAR about this Jesus Christ is all we need. He alone is the Son of God, sent from heaven as God’s final sacrifice for our sins. Cults will DENY this! “Salvation is found in no one else for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we MUST be saved”(acts4:12). “Let those be your choicest companions, who have made Christ their chief companion”(P.Brooks). Have a blessed day.

2019-07-02

Accept or reject

While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (rms5:8). One of the hardest truths for the unsaved to accept or understand is that there is nothing that they can do to win their salvation. No matter how generous, how honest, or how compassionate- its never enough. Our God is holy and His standard is perfection. It is only when we see ourselves as God sees us- sinners- in need of a Savior will we know we need Him. “The first link between my soul and Christ is not my goodness, but my badness, not my merit but misery, not my riches but my need”(C.H.Spurgeon). So no matter what you have done or will do- no matter your sin or goodness, God loves you. The question as been asked why would such a loving God send people to a terrible place called Hell... my question back would be why would you reject such a loving God? God loves us so much that He has provided payment (His one and Only Son) for us. Again the hardest truth for some is to believe and receive- believe that Christ died for us and receive by faith into your life. You can not win your salvation because Christ has already won it for you.... will you except it? Have a blessed day.

2019-07-01

Life’s tragedies

Every good gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights (jms1:17). The key to understanding life’s tragedies is to understand its source. Every tragedy (death & pain) came into this world because of sin. When Adam and Eve ate the fruit from the tree of knowledge, they were not just doing what God had told them not to do. They were doing a blatant, open act of rebellion (in thought, in word and in deed) against God. God had made them and supplied all of their needs. But by their actions Adam and Eve were saying God was a liar and they chose to believe the lies of Satan instead. As we look at our world today, we see the reminder of Adam and Eve’s sinful act of rebellion in every graveyard, every hospital, every prison and every courtroom. I don’t think we will ever understand why God allows evil things to happen. But all evil happens because we are sinful people living in a evil world. What is sins greatest tragedy? It was the cross. “The cross is the resting place for sin, the tomb for self, and the throne of our fears” (H.St.Johns). The Bible’s tells us, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall be made alive (1cor15:22). Christ triumphs over all our tragedies and we can also...because of Him. Have a blessed day.

2019-06-30

Facing discouragement

Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart (psm27:14). You may not believe this, but the root of discouragement is unbelief. Have you ever been discouraged... not making enough money, you are frustrated with your family life, maybe you are having health problems (the list is endless). “Nothing paralyzes our lives like the attitude that things will never change. We need to remind ourselves that God can change things. Outlook determines outcome. If wee see only the problems, we will be defeated; but IF we see the possibilities in the problem we can have victory” (W.Wiersbe). The things that discourage us are like large clouds that, like all clouds block the warm and joy of the sun. Discouragement is Satan’s device that stop or postpone the work of God in our lives. Discouragement blinds our eyes of the mercy of God and makes us see only the bad in our circumstances. There is only one way to dispel discouragement, and it is not achieved in our on strength or ingenuity. It is turning in faith to God, believing that He loves us and is in CONTROL! The Bible tells us, “Wait on the Lord...(most don’t like this) and He shall strengthen your heart.” Are you discouraged... you know what to do. Have a blessed day.

2019-06-29

A perfect world

God saw all that he had made, and it was very good (gen1:31). How can God say the world is good when so much of it is clearly imperfect and filled with so much evil? Maybe you have wondered this yourself? After God created the world, He said it was perfect, because the world was exactly as He wanted it to be. But He said creation was “very good”, this was before the temptation of Adam and Eve by Satan. Our world was perfect until Adam and Eve believed Satans lies. Think of it, Adam and Eve had a perfect world to live in and everything they needed, they even walked with God in the cool of the day. But they chose to believe the lies of Satan, turning their backs on God. Suddenly sin entered in, taking root in the hearts of every man and women. But sin didn’t stop there even the planet and animals became ravaged by sin and death. But we know this world will not last forever. God will intervene and He will rush in a new Heaven and a new Earth. He will create a new Heaven and a new Earth that will be free of all evil and sin. Please do not be overwhelmed by the sin and evil that abounds in our world, God will one day bring things as their were intended to be. But the question has to be asked... Are you ready? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-28

He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him (heb5:9). With the exception of Jesus, no one in the Bible has endured more scorn and ridicule than Noah. Told by God to build an Ark, to protect him and his family from the rains that will come (judgement of all mankind). The Bible tell us, “Noah did according to all the God had commanded him”(gen6:22). Can you imagine what others said? Can you picture it- people shaking their heads, laughing, saying that he is a fool, telling others that he is has lost his mind. Noah induced this ridicule for 120 years, not a day or even a month- but 120 years! When the rain and storms came (it had never rained before) it was only Noah, his family and the animals that God had sent that were saved. For everything else it was too late. We like Noah are called to proclaim a message- the message of Christ. We may never have to build an Ark, but we may find ourselves being laughed at or even thought of as losing our mind (we may even endure this for a while). Will everyone accept the gospel message? No, but this should not stop us from sharing. The Bible tells us, “for the power of God for salvation of everyone who believes” (rms1:16). Never stop sharing! Have a blessed day.

2019-06-27

To die is gain for the Christian

To me, to live is Christ and to die is gain (phil1:21). Most of us have a understand of the loss of the passing of a dear loved one (sudden or long suffering). We have stood by their grave with tears in our eyes and a shattered heart. We may have even uttered the words “Why,Lord” because we didn’t understand. We know the impact that our loved one has made on our lives and the lives of others. The passing of the righteous is not an accident, even if we feel hopeless. “There is powerful strength to be enjoyed in hope (even if we don’t understand). Hope, even in the midst of suffering, gives us stability and meaning to life (even in the face of death). Some of the most optimistic people are those who have suffered greatly”(unkwn). So, with God there NO accidents, NO tragedies, NO catastrophes as far as His children are concerned. Sir Walter Scott said, “Is death the last sleep? No, it is the final awakening.” This is true for our loved one who have gone on before us and this stands true for us as well (even when our grief overwhelms us or our confusion assails us) we still have our hope of Heaven and our life there. Have a blessed day.

2019-06-26

Spiritual newborns

Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation (1pt2:2). When babies are born it is only the beginning, they were never meant to be a baby forever. They are to grow strong and eventually become adults. The same is true for the Christian believer. When we first except Christ we are “spiritual newborns”- but we were never meant to remain that way (but many do). God’s plan for us is to grow stronger in our faith and mature in our understanding of God’s will for us. We should be making steps to grow spiritually strong and the to do that is by consuming the “pure spiritual milk” of God. What is this pure spiritual milk? God’s written word (the Bible). In the Bible we learn about God and His will for our lives. God has given us the privilege of prayer and the ability to fellowship with other believers. Are we missing any of these components- God’s Word, prayer, and fellowship- if so our spiritual growth will be stunted.” “At the profoundest depths in life, men talk not about God, but with Him”(D.E.Trueblood). Have a blessed day.

2019-06-25

Feelings, can you trust them?

Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith (heb10:22). We are told to throw away our feelings when we come to Christ, not because He doesn’t care about our feelings, but because we cant trust our feelings. Besides we are not saved by our feeling, we are saved by Christ. Our feelings will come and go, but only Christ remains. These are our facts: Christ died for us. He has paid for our sins and rose again. When we commit our life to Him, He promises to forgive and save us. The Bible tells us, “God has given us eternal life and this life is in His Son, He who has the Son has life”(1jhn5:11-12). God has given us this promise and God cannot lie. Our feelings will lie to us-Satan will even use them to convince us that Christ has abandoned us or even that we have lost our salvation. So alway remember: “There us no truth in (Satan). When he lies, he is speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies”(jhn8:44). Isn’t it comforting to know that our faith is based on God’s truths and not our feelings! Have a blessed day.

2019-06-24

Pride getting in the way...

Patience is better than pride (eccl7:8). The story is told of a man who stopped going to church because he didn’t agree with a new building project. After several year away from church his wife passed away and he found himself wishing he had never left; his loneliness was almost more than he could bear. But would he have the courage to swallow his pride and go back to church? Finally he did, and his only regret was that he didn’t do it sooner. Maybe you know of someone or maybe you yourself can relate to the man in our story? Maybe, you have to swallow your pride and apologize or admit you were wrong about something? Maybe you are blaming God for things that you yourself have created? Maybe there is a relationship that needs to be restored (especially if you are the one at fault). Or maybe like the man in our story, you need to get back into a fellowship of believers? Whatever the situation, admit your pride has gotten the best of you and seek God’s wisdom. Let go of your pride- and wait to see how God can and will restore your heart and change your life. Have a blessed day.

2019-06-23

Who’s to blame?

Each one is tempted when, by his own evil desires, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives brith to sin (jms1:14-15). Have you ever wondered if Satan is always to blamed when things go wrong in our lives, or is it sometimes our responsibility? BOTH, the Bible is very clear that Satan is real and that he is ultimately behind all evil that goes on in the world. Understand that before he rebelled against God, the world was perfect- sin and evil didn’t exist. As a result we live in a fallen, twisted, sin filled world (Satan’s tempting of Adam and Eve), yes Satan is real. But also understand Satan is limited- he is not all powerful and he does not directly cause every bad thing that happens to us. Sometimes we don’t know the cause- but often we alone are the cause of our own bad things. This happens when we have turned our backs on God and purposely follow our own sinful desires instead of following God’s will for us. Remember: God gives us freewill to do what we want, but that does not release us from the consequences of our sin. The Bible tells us: “God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows”(gal6:7). “Theological truth is useless until it is obeyed. The purpose behind all doctrine is to secure moral action”(A.W.Tozer). Who do you blame when bad things happen? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-22

Shallow beliefs

What good is it, my brothers if a man claims to faith but has no deeds? Faith by itself, it is not accompanied be action is dead (jms2:14). Which tire on our car is most important, the right or the left? Both are necessary for us to drive, so both are of equal importance. So which is more important: What we believe about God or what kind of life we live? Again, both, each is equally necessary. The Bible tells us that if we claim to believe in Christ, but our faith doesn’t impact the way we live, then our faith isn’t genuine. Our faith without works is useless. This is the very point James is making in today’s verse. James is warning us about the dangers of our shallow belief in Christ. But don’t get so caught up in the works part of our Christian walk. We are told that we are saved by faith and faith only in Christ-not by any good deed that we may do. Only Christ has the power to save and change our lives. He willingly went to the cross for us, no other has done this. The Bible also tells us, “By grace you have been saved through faith”(eph2:8). So the question has to be asked, what kind of impact does your faith have in your life and the lives of others? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-21

Treasures in Heaven

Lay up for yourself treasures in heaven (mtt6:20). The old story is told of two elderly friends each were dying. One was very rich and the other was very poor. The rich man lived a life without knowing Christ, while the poor man was a strong believer. One day the rich man was talking to another friend saying, “When I die, I will have to leave all my riches. When he dies (referring to the His poor friend), he shall go to his riches. In just a few sentences the rich man summed up their contrast. The rich man worth everything, in reality had nothing; the poor man with nothing, in reality had everything. This story is a vivid example of why Jesus told His disciples:”Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth... but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven... For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”(mtt6:19-21). Does this mean we should get rid of all of our possessions, no not unless God instructs you. But this does mean we should be committing all that we have (even our lives) to Him and put put His will above all else. Have a blessed day.

2019-06-20

Things hoped for...

Faith is the substance of things hoped for (heb11:1). Faith must have an object. We don’t just have faith; we must have faith in something or someone. Having Faith in “faith” is meaningless. As Christians we have only one for our faith: our living God. Anything other is insubstantial, unreal and even deceptive. The Bible tells us, “Through Him (we) believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that you faith and hope are in God”(1pt1:21). Faith is confidence in God. “Unbelief is confidence in something else. Our faith in God is our greatest empowering force known to man. And can conquer any obstacle”(H.Vaughan). People today put their faith in anything from astrology to science to humanism. But only Christ can and does bridge the gap between God and us. “Believe God’s Word and power more more than you believe your own feelings and experiences. Your Rock is Christ” (S.Rutherford). Our faith in God is one of our greatest motivators and it enables us to achieve Gods will for our lives. Where is your faith? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-19

God is not hidden

Forever, O Lord, Your word is settled in heaven (psm119;89). Revelation is defined as the making known of something that was previously secret or unknown. Some people see God this way secret and unknown. But this view assumes that God wants to remain secret or unknown. God word is settled in heaven this must mean His word is also settled on earth as well. God has revealed Himself to us. He is not hidden. God has two ways of making Himself known to us. The first is through nature (mighty roar of the ocean, the grander of the highest mountains). By looking at the world, we can learn something about its Creator. The other way God reveals Himself to us is through His written Word. The Bible is much more than an ancient record of events; it is God’s, thoughts and heart, given to us by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to guide our lives. “I know the Bible is inspired because it finds me at the greater depths of my being (more) than any other book” (S.T.Coleridge). God has spoken... and He still speaks today. The question is are we listening? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-17

Spiritually anemic

Desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby (1pt2:20). We know that our bodies needs food to stay healthy and thriving, but did you also know that our souls need spiritual food? Without proper nutrition our bodies become weak and anemic. Without proper spiritual food our spirit will be weak and will be susceptible to every temptation, and this makes us unable to do the work God has called us to do. We find the spiritual food we need in our Bible’s, the very Word of God. The Bible tells us of Christ, who is our Bread of Life, and our Water of Life. Without our spiritual nourishment we will lose our spiritual vitality. Please don’t be content to just skim through a chapter in the Bible, but rather read it as if your life depends on it (because our souls do). Meditate on it, memorize it, hide it in your heart so that it penetrates the very core of you. A small portion well digested is of far greater spiritual value than a lengthy passage scanned in a hurry. So, take your time really enjoy reading God’s love letter to you. Remember: “He who has the Holy Spirit in his heart and Scriptures in his hand has all he needs” (A. Maclaren). Have a blessed day.

2019-06-15

You will have troubles...

In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world (jhn16:33). When we think of the future that God has in store for us, some may wonder if its is a form of escapism, and maybe in a sense it might be. But before Satan gets finished with this world, perhaps we will all be looking for the exit signs. As children of God we are to look beyond what this world offers, and look to what God has promised,”new heaven and new earth in which righteousness dwells”(2pt3:13). So in the meantime, we live with the trials, heartaches and injustice that have plague us since the fall all Adam and Eve. Don’t mistakenly think that just because we are Christians, that God will remove all our problems- this is not the case. We still live in a world riddled with Satan and sin. But remember Jesus’ promise, “But be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” Notice: Not only will He overcome- but that He already has.. think on these things! Have a blessed day.

2019-06-14

Helping others

Because he...suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted (heb2:18). Have you ever faced a loss so great that you don’t think that you can face the next hour, day, week, or year? Some of you can relate to what I’m saying, while others of you have yet to face such a loss. When we face such a loss, we doubt ourselves, others, and even God. Luckily the Bible tells us, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ...who comforts us in ALL our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any troubles, with their comfort which which we ourselves are comforted by God”(2cor1:3-4). The apostle Paul is telling us that not only are we comforted by God in our trials, but our trial can equip us to comfort others. We can curtail our own sorrows by ministering to others. One benefit of ministering to others is that it allows us to focus on someone else, instead of on our own situation. So in other words it takes the focus off of us. Has God brought you through a trial or tribulation that has equipped you to help others? And are you helping? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-13

The Bible’s firm foundation

Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against you (psm119:11). Our Bible is not just another great book. Our bible is God’s Word given to us by God to tell us about Him. The apostle Peter tell us, “We did not follow cunningly devised fables...for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit”(2pt1:16,20). The apostle Paul declared, “ALL Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness (2tim3:16). “The Bible that is falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t”(V.Havner). Let our bibles be our firm foundation. Let it be the staff of life that nourishes our soul. Let it be the sword of the Spirit that cuts away our sin. It has been said and even written in my bible: “Sin will keep you from God’s word- or God’s Word will keep you from sin!” Which can be said of you? Have a blessed day.

2019-06-01

Being diligent

Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our... Savior Jesus Christ (titus2;13). Do we want to get rid of discouragement, the best way, I am told is to remember that Christ is returning (maybe soon). Whatever discouragement we are going through right now, will not last forever. Our greatest promise and most encouraging truth is that Christ will return. It’s hard not to get discouraged when we look around at the things going on in the world (wars, famines, natural disasters). But the Bible is the only book in the world that reliably predicts the future, its consummation of all things shall be the second coming of Christ. Those who are called the children of God, this truth gives us hope- but it should also make us sober and diligent. The Bible tells us, “Of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angles of Heaven, but My Father only”(mt24:36). Our believing in the return of Christ should not make us less concerned about our world- on the contrary it should make us more concerned, because we know the time is short. So, are we living as if Christ will return today? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-30

The peace of God

But the wicked are like the tossing sea, which cannot rest, whose waves cast up mire and mud. “There is no peace, say my God, for the wicked”(isa57:20-21). We all know them or maybe we are one of them, people who have no stability in their lives. They are the ones who chase after the next fade (electronics, diets, cars, homes etc). Yet they never seem to find happiness in the thing that they are so desperately seeking. The reason they don’t find happiness is because they have left God out of their lives. Without God they have no purpose of direction, no sense of right and wrong. God didn’t plan for our lives to be this way. We are meant to have a relationship with Him. God gives us calmness, and He begins to bring direction to our lives. This will not happen over night, but as we walk little by little, day by day, He begins to bring us to a deeper understanding of Him. The more we understand the peace of God, the more we will want to share Him with others. Begin today to walk in the peace that only God can and will give to our lives. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-29

The privilege of prayer

Men always ought to pray and not lose heart (lk18:1). When we pray (not many do), our prayers don’t have to be eloquent or have to have the words of a theologian. In fact, sometimes our simplest most heartfelt prayers are the ones that are most pleasing to God. When we have accepted Christ, we are adopted into His family forever. Now we have the awesome privilege of going directly into His presence and pray to Him as our Father. When we first start praying we may not be fluent, but the important part is that we start. The apostle Paul tell us, “pray with out ceasing”(1thes5:17). Paul choose a term used in his day to describe a persistent cough. Giving us the example of praying repeatedly throughout our day. “At the profoundest depths in life, men talk not about God, but with Him”(D.L.Trueblood). So the question has to asked, are you praying without ceasing? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-28

Weighted down by troubles

If only my anguish could be weighed and all my misery be placed on the scales! It would surely outweigh the sands of the seas (job6:2-3). In our verse Job cried out to God. Job is weighed down beyond measure with heartache, grief and anger. Job wanted to know why God had taken his family, his servants and livestock. But God did not answer Job. Have you ever been the same place as Job, where trials and troubles seem to be all around you? If so know this: God is not up set or angry with you, He understands your heartaches and weaknesses. But the reality is; we don’t always know why God permits certain things to happen to us. One thing we do know is that evil is real, because we live in a world filled with sickness, death and sorrow. Our world is not the way God intended it to be. One day (maybe) soon Christ will return and things will be as God intends it to be. So, until that time we need to put our faith and hope in Christ. He knows our sufferings. He died on the cross for us. And because of of that we can have hope even in the midst of our lives darkest hours. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-27

Love is an action

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him (1jhn4:9). If you have ever been in love, you know that a person can tell you a thousand time “I love you,” but if they never show you that they love you, it means nothing. Believe it or not love is a action. It has to be shown. God’s love for us is not a vague feeling. How do we know that God’s love is real? It can be found in the actions of His Son. Jesus left the glory and spender of Heaven to come to our sin-infested world to die for us, paying for what we could not. The apostle Paul put it this way: “Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrated his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us”(rms5:7-8). Have you ever felt that God didn’t love you? Don’t give in to your feeling they will trip you up every time. Look to Christ and what He has done for us. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-25

Trust

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace (rms15:13). I know from my own experiences that the trials and troubles of this live can shake the faith of the strongest of Christians. But just because our faith has been shaken, it shouldn’t mean that we should doubt God. We are to trust that He is still on His throne. He is working all things according to His own plan. There is a story that is told of some British railroad workers that found a thrush’s (bird) nest under the train tracks. The hen was peacefully sitting on her eggs, undisturbed by the roar of the fast moving trains above her. This is a great example of trust. The Bible tells us, “ You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You”(isa26:3). So when we face the trial and troubles in our lives, we know that God will give us the things we need to endure and over come. Day by day and little by little keep your mind on Christ, for He is will give us the grace and peace to get us through these things. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-24

Sinking ships

We know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us (1jhn3:24). We are told that a boat dose not sink because it in the water; the boat sinks because the water gets into the boat. Likewise a Christian does not fail to live as they should because they are in the world; they fail because the world gets into them. This can happen almost without the Christian realizing it. There was a time when they were dedicated to Christ surrendered to the will of God. But little by little, the chilling waters of the world started creeping in. They became preoccupied with the things of this world rather than the things of Christ. Did you know that most oceangoing ships have a pump that runs constantly which pulls any water that might leaked into the hull. Likewise we should have our spiritual pump of repentance running, to keep the ways of this world from sneaking into our lives. Please don’t let the world sink your ship. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-23

God’s thoughts

How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O,Lord! How great is the sum of them!(psm139:17). As parents how happy are we when our children question everything we do for them... mom, mom, mom... You get the point. I have felt frustrated and maybe a little angry that my children didn’t trust my judgement. As a parent we only want what’s best for our children. The Bible tells us often how much it pleases God for us to trust Him for everything. The Bible tell us in Matthew 8:8, the faith and trust of the Roman soldier when he told Jesus to “say the word” and his servant would be healed. We are also told by Jesus, “Look at the birds... they neither sow nor reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value?’(mtt6:26). God values our trust in Him above every other character trait. But how do we build our trust in God? First we start, by spending time in prayer, by worshipping Him and by reading His Word. Secondly, we build trust when we step out in faith and we discover that God can be trusted. Have you stepped out in faith lately? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-22

A worldly point of view...

So from now on regard no one from a worldly point of view (2cor5:16). The Bible tells us that the apostle Paul’s (Saul) main mission in life was to to stop the spread of the gospel of Christ: “Saul (Paul) was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples (acts9:1). But everything changed for Saul (Paul) on the road to Damascus. That’s where Saul met the changing power of Christ, and became Paul. Christ changed Saul from the persecutor of Christ to Paul the proclaimer of Christ. So what made the difference? When we meet Christ where we are in our sins, we are forever changed. When we go from a skeptic of Christ to a believer in Christ, when we believe Christ is who He says He is, the One and only true Son of God, we are forever changed just like Paul. But I think there is another reason for Paul’s change.. Paul began to see others the way God sees them. Paul seen others in their hopeless and confused state. How could Paul or any of us remain the same once we except Christ? So the question has to be asked... Does the truth of Christ make a difference in us? And are we seeing others the way God see them? If not, why? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-21

Worldly living

Do not love the world or the things in the world (1jhn2:15). This verse may seem a bit harsh to the child of God. But it isn’t, most of us get confused when it comes to worldliness. The definition of worldliness is: the quality or character of being intellectually sophisticated and worldly through culture or experience. In other words, it is an attitude, a spirit, and atmosphere that engulfs everyone. It is an attitude of putting ourself first. Worldliness looks only to this world and never thinks of God or the things of God. It shows itself in many different ways. It is shown in our habits, our pleasures, our desire for material things, and in our driving ambitions. It puts ourself above everyone else. But each of these things are part of our daily lives and kept in check are not a bad thing. But abused they can and will cause us to loose focus on our walk with God. Not kept in check it can destroy us and those around us. We must stay on guard against the spirit of worldliness, that it doesn’t find a place in our lives. This is hard I know, but walk daily with God, and it can be done. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-20

Lessons from King David

Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God (psm42:5). King David knew a thing or two about what it means to be down (hiding in caves, fighting in wars, building a nation, affairs and murder). Have you ever noticed that it is hard to have hope when we don’t have a reason to hope? Have you even noticed that some (few) people are naturally optimistic? They almost alway are able to put on a brave face and a smile? For most of us we don’t process the trials of life this way, for some they are barely able to cope with the trails of life. King David gives us a reason for our hope. He tells us that it can only be found in God. That’s where he found it. And I think that’s a good place for us to start. We don’t find our hope in our circumstances or natural optimism (or pessimism), not in our family or friends. How do we find this hope? We find it when we realize just how much God loves us. God’s love for us is so great that He sent His one and Only Son for us. It happens when we realize that there’s more to life than what we have settled for- ahead of us is Heaven. Our true hope for this life is found in Christ- for this life and the next. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-18

Condemnation forgiven

Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered (psm32:1). This is not my story but one good example of todays reading: The story is told of a sensitive boy in the eighteenth century who joined the British Army, but when the shots started, he deserted. Years later he became a great astronomer, even discovering a new planet. King George sent for him. He went fearful that the king would order his execution . Instead, the astronomer was given a letter of royal pardon. The king said, “Now we can talk and you shall come live in Windsor Castle.” The astronomers name was Sir William Herschel. Herschel was guilty of desertion and deserved condemnation. But King George had mercy on him and even made him a member of the royal household. This is what God promises us. We are guilty and helpless. But God loves us and “he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy”(titus3:5). Never forget: “God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved”(jhn3:17). Have a blessed day.

2019-05-17

Living righteously

We should live soberly, righteously and godly in the present age (titus2:12). God’s desire for us is to live a righteous and godly life. This is a challenge that most fall short of doing. The reason is most don’t understand how to live righteously. Living righteously is more that being right (as most would think). Living righteously starts with a moral foundation (our moral foundation). If we have no moral foundation we can not and will not live righteously. Our moral foundation starts with God. This is not popular in todays world, because we are constantly told that we are the center of our own universe. Everything we do in life matters- good, bad, or indifferent- each matter. As a child of God, every action should reflect Him in our life. If our actions are otherwise, how will the lost world come to know His saving power? Please don’t think that your actions don’t matter, they do- they do to those around us, they do to God and to Christ. Jesus urges us to, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven”(mt5:16). How brightly does your light shine? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-16

Helping others

As we have opportunity, let us do good to all people (gal6;10). Do we ever get frustrated because we can’t solve all of our problems (personal or worldly)? I know I have enough trouble with my person stuff to even worry about things on a larger scale. Do we feel helpless when we see on the daily news all of the natural disasters, acts of violence, the look of hungry faces, and the homeless? We may never be able to solve all of ours or the worlds problems, but this should not stop from helping others. So, how do we do good to those in need? Start with those who are around us- help an elderly person who unable get out and about. Maybe you know a single mom who can use a needed break. Maybe you can be a tutor to a child who is struggling in school. Or maybe just be a friend to someone who is having a tough time. We may not be able to solve the problems of the world, but to those we help it may mean the world to them. So the question has to be asked... who around us, can we help? Start with just one. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-15

When you can’t see God’s hand

The Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you (duet31:8). Have you ever been so low in your walk with God that you felt that He was not there? I have, 2018 was the darkest year of my life. My only daughter passed away unexpectedly. It was hard to pray, and when I did, I often thought that God had disappeared and left me alone in my grief and sorrow. It was a lonely time for me. It has been said that, “there are times in our lives that God withdraws to test our faith. But He wants us to trust Him in our darkness.” We may need to reach up in faith for God’s hand and He will be there, waiting for us. Sometimes our trials and tastings are so overwhelming that we don’t reach for God’s hand... Remember: Whether or not we sense God’s presence in our trial and troubles, by faith we know He is there. We can stake our lives on His promise... “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”(heb13:5). So reach up! Have a blessed day.

2019-05-14

Prayer first...

Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray... The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective (jms5:13,16). When life turns ugly on us, how do we respond? Do we automatically go into panic mode? How about panicking? Do we get angry? Do we get depressed? Maybe we get confused? Or do we pray? I would venture to say that we turn to prayer as a last resort. The Bible tells us, that we should be praying first! Why? One reason is that our prayers acknowledges our position of helplessness. I believe that we will never turn to God in prayer if we think we can solve our problems on our own or if we are too proud to ask God for help. Our pridefulness leads to praylessness. Our prayers also acknowledges God’s power and love. When we pray we should not pray with the intent to manipulate God, but we are looking to Him to bless us and work all things according to His will (not our desires). So, the next time life turns ugly, our first response should be automatically turn to God in prayer! Have a blessed day.

2019-05-13

Change

He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new”(rev21:5). When we think of all the advancement in medicine, communication and our technology, we should be grateful that God has given us the ability to make this kind of progress. When we think of this kind of advancement its kinda hard to believe that we have had more wars and destruction in human history. We are a painful mixture of good and bad, love and hate, joy and sorrow. We have the ability to fly to the moon and also able to destroy millions with the touch of a button. The Bible tells us:”For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want”(rms7:19). So how do we not do the evil things we do and do the good things that we are suppose to do? The only way I know is by committing ourselves to the one who makes all things new. Walking daily with the Lord. This world is difficult enough- but walking through it without our moral compass is even tougher. Christ loved us so much that He came to save us- but because of this love, He could leave us the way we were. Christ is always making us new. So please don’t be satisfied to remain the same person you have been- allow Christ to change you. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-12

Storms

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace (rms15:13). None of us have that picture perfect life... each of us face some type of storms-it could be family problems, trouble with finances, a child with heath issues, losing the trust of a friend. Each storm we face has its own set of unique circumstances, but one thing is for sure each threaten to engulf us. Let me remind us of the storm that Jesus and His disciples faced (mk435-41) on the Sea of Galilee. The disciples, like us, when we face a storm, started to grow panicky and anxious- but Jesus as the story goes was deep in sleep. Why? Because He knew God was in control (we quickly forget). He was at peace because He knew who reigned over the storm and He knew that in three small words: “Hush, be still’(mk4:39)-that the storm would disappear. We may not have the power to calm our storms the same way Christ did, but He can calm the storms in our lives. Look to the man who was fast (deep) asleep, not those who were anxious and worried, He may not calm the storm but He will calm us (if we let Him). What raging storms do you face? Stay close to Jesus, only He can calm our raging storms. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-11

Surrendered life

Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself (mk8:34). Christ has called us to a life surrendered to Him. But sadly most don’t understand or have the desire to live a life of surrender. It is said that a surrendered Christian will make an impact on our world. Our world doesn’t need another lukewarm, lazy, quarrelsome, doubting, or prideful Christian- we have plenty. “It is a fact that those whose lives are daily being comforted to the Word and purpose of God will be given the ability to see issues more plainly”(M.Watts). Our response to the call of Christ can make the difference between success and failure in our spiritual life. It makes the difference between needing help and being able to help others. The total surrender of our lives to Christ will revolutionize our habits, our prayers, our giving, our desire to be in Gods Word, and our church relationship. How surrendered are you? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-10

Hidden sin

I acknowledge my sin to You, And my iniquity I have not hidden (psm32;5). We live in an era in which sin is ignored. For the majority of people, the way to get around sin is to change the law of the land (ex. Abortion, same sex marriage), please do not think just because the laws of the land have been changed that God has changed His mind on sin... most of us will never commit what our laws would call a heinous crime, but all sin in God’s eye is the same. God doesn’t see sins as different degrees like the law of the land. The end result for our sin is the same... it separates us from God. Understand, God hates sin, any sin... He is not trying to keep us from having fun, no He understands what habitual sin will do to not just us but our families too. Our sin is like a unchecked cancer, that rots the body from the inside out. So how do we rid ourselves of this cancer of sin? It can be achieved by a daily turning of our lives over to Christ, our Lord and Savior. Does this mean that we will never sin again? I wish I could say no, but with Christ our choice to sin lessons. Start each day walking with Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-09

Loving one another

Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought to love one another (1jn4:11). “Some people seem to have such a passion for righteousness that they have no room left for compassion for those who have failed (C.Allen). Some have said that as Christians, we are the most critical on our own (fellow Christians who have fallen back into habitual sin). “In prosperity, our friends know us; in adversity, we know our friends”(J. Churton). I pray that we do show great kindness and gentle mercy to those who are in need. I prayer that we may reach out to the lost with great compassion and love, that there will be no doubt of our love for others. The world will (and does) eat us up and spit us back out without even noticing our pain. It is time for those of us who are called a child of God to step up and start encouraging the discouraged, heal the hurt, and repair the broken. Not by our strength but by the strength of our loving God. So, the question has to be asked... Do you know of someone who needs some encouragement today? Ask God to show you how to help and love those who are in need. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-08

The beauty of Heaven

Behold I make all things new (rev21:5). The Bible tells us that Heaven is a place so beautiful that the human mind can not fathom it. It is said to be a place where all things are new. When the apostle John got a glimpse of Heaven the only example he could use was a young women on her wedding day. John said that the holy city was like “a bride beautifully dressed for her husband”(rev21:2). Many artist over the years have tried to paint pictures of the beauty of Heaven- but sadly they fall short. The Apostle John could only hint at the beauty that we will someday see:”(The holy city) shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal”(rev21:11). The Bible’s main emphasis of Heaven is not it’s beauty-but on the joy of Heaven. The Bible teaches us that Heaven will, be a happy home, because there will be nothing in it to hinder happiness. “They shall by no means enter it anything that defiles... But the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it”(rev21:27;22:3). Can you imagine the joy we will experience when we are at home in heaven in the presence of our Lord? No- me neither, but I am sure that there will be nothing like it! Have a blessed day.

2019-05-07

Weakness and strength

For when I am weak, them I am strong (2cor12:10). These words seem like a contradiction, how in the world can we be strong if we are weak? But this is not a contradiction in God’s eyes. The apostle Paul is stating a important truth: When we attempt to do God’s work in our own strength instead of God’s strength, we will fail. It is only when we acknowledge our weakness and look to the Holy Spirit for the wisdom and strength we need- will God bless our efforts. Maybe you have been asked to serve in your local church? Maybe you haven’t served to this extent before and don’t know what needs to be done? Sure, you will study and work diligently; trusting God doesn’t mean we just sit back and do nothing. Only God can work in the hearts of those you are seeking to help. Start now confessing your weaknesses to God and trust Him to work through you- for today and in the future. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-06

Don’t give up!

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith (1tim4:7). Many have asked or maybe you have asked, “Where is history heading?” You and I may not know or understand where history is heading- but we can be assured that God is in control. Surrounded by this world’s confusion, our all powerful God’s hand is moving, working out His unchanging plan and purpose. We may feel like giving up, throwing in the towel, we may not see His hand at work- but work He is doing... it has been said that God moves in mysterious ways, His wonders to preform. Our God is not absent. He is ever diligently working for His Devine purpose. Do we know God’s divine purpose? The Bible tells us:”That... He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which in heaven and which are on earth”(eph1:10). One day Satan’s rule will end, and Christ will reign. Someday all the sin and rebellion of this corrupted universe will be destroyed, and our Lord Jesus will bring peace and rule forever. So, please don’t give up, don’t be discouraged by what we see on the news each day. Remember: our God is at work moving behind the scene and someday (maybe soon) Christ will rule forever. Have a blessed day.

2019-05-05

Teaching our children

You shall teach them to your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up (duet6:7). All will agree, being a parent is the hardest job we will ever have. If you are not yet a parent- hang on-, but if your like me and your parenting day are behind you... you know what I mean. Our greatest goal as a parent is to work ourselves out of a job... one day (sooner or later) our children will leave home. A major part of our responsibility is to prepare them for what this world will through at them. It starts with showing them how to brush their teeth to showing them how to cook. From helping them with their homework to encouraging them to make wise decisions. But sadly most parents don’t take the time to teach their children about God. Thinking it an offense to teach them about the Gospel, thinking it is up to the child to find their way to Christ. We are selling our children short. If we don’t teach them, someone else will and it may not be the truths you know. So... mom and dad step up to the plate, teach you child of the love and peace that comes with a relationship with Christ. This world is hard enough, and not always nice, but whatever this world hands them, they will be able to handle it when their foundation is solid. So start today teaching your children and grandchildren about the love of Christ. You wouldn’t hand your child the keys to a new car without first teaching them how to drive... So the question has to be asked, what are you teaching your children (grandchildren)? Have a blessed day.

2019-05-03

The Lord is good

The Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting (psm100:5). Many of us do not see God in all of His wholeness. We quickly quote John 3:16: God so loved the world... but we easily forgot or don’t even realize verse 18: “He who does not believe has been judged already.” Sobering words would you would agree. It is true, God is loving and compassionate, but He is also holy and pure. He is our holy Judge who will bring His full wrath to those who refuse them. For those of us who know Him, we do not have this fear, but those whom we love and know there should be great fear for them. The test of our love for them is in our sharing of Christ dyeing for them. Do we take the extra time to pray for them or tell them about our Savior? If not why? The good news is that Christ is loving and compassionate, forgiving and merciful. But those around us will never know this if we don’t take the time to share. It is not up to the pastor or religious leader to tell others about Christ love it is up to us... Are you sharing the greatest love that we will ever know with the ones we love? Start today... Have a blessed day.

2019-05-02

Stubborn wills

Repent therefore and be converted (acts3:19). When we choose to give our hearts and lives (not all do) to Christ for salvation it is a once for all event. When we make this choice God takes us “out of darkness into His marvelous light”(1pt2:9). And for most of us this is an easy choice- giving us “Hell insurance.” But being a Christian is the hard part. It’s deciding everyday (sometimes every hour) to follow Christ. Giving up on our dreams and desires to follow Christ and what He wants for us. Turning away from those sins and desires that keep us from spending time with Christ. Even when we choose to live for Christ- that’s when our true struggles begin. You see, our old nature is still kicking and screaming within us- fighting to put ourselves first, and not Christ. It isn’t easy to bring our stubborn wills into submission for Christ ... but when we do- it’s as if a misplaced vertebrae has snapped into place. Instead of the stressors, tension and distractions of a life out of sync with God, we discover and enjoy the serenity of His presence. So, the question has to be asked,”Who will control your will today? You or Christ?” Have a blessed day.

2019-05-01

The eyes of the Lord

The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers (1pt3:12). What makes the difference between a Christian and a strong Christians life? The amount of time spend with God. Many people want to work for God, but few want or even know how to spend time with God. Most of us are content with the busyness of life, instead of spending time in the presence of a friend (Jesus). It’s not easy to shut out the world, just to set aside a few moments in God’s Word and prayer. God calls us to work for Him, and this is true because there is no place in the Christian life for laziness or lack of diligence. But God also calls us to be with Him; “Come with me by yourself to a quiet place”(mk6:31). So, how do we find that balance? First, if we truly understand how important it was for Christ to make time for the Father, we would realize how much more important it is to us. The Bible tells us, “having risen a long while before daylight... (He-Jesus) went out and departed to a solitary place, and there He prayed’(mk1:35). Second, if something is important to us, we will make time for it... no matter what it takes. Don’t delay any longer... start making time today to spend with Christ, you will never regret it! Have a blessed day.

2019-04-29

A bored generation

These remain therefore a rest for the people of God (heb4:9). It has been said that we are the most entertained generation in history. Our homes have televisions in every room streaming in thousands of channels. Professional athletes and entertainers take in and spend billions of dollars each year. Millions of people own two and three vacations homes. Our children get upset if they don’t have the latest smart phone or gaming system. I believe all of this searching for entertainment stems from something deeper. Some have suggested that we are the most bored generation in history and maybe they are right. It has also been suggested that deep down inside is an empty place in our hearts- a restlessness, a desire for inner peace that will not go away, and the irony is, the more we try to satisfy it, the less content we become. I believe Christ can only fill our empty space in our hearts and does when we open our lives to Him. God’s Word also points us to our future- to Heaven, where our restless hearts will be at peace. “There remains therefore a rest for the people of God”. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-28

God given skill

Every skilled person to whom the Lord has given skill and ability...(is) to do the work just as the Lord has commanded (ex36:1). Sometimes we forget that Jesus was a carpenter, working with His hands for most of His life. I sometimes wonder if we downplay the work that we do? You know, maybe you have said something along these lines... “lm just a secretary” or maybe “I’m just an office manager” or “lm just a stay at home mom” or maybe like me “lm just an optician.” And maybe like me, you have questioned your ability and how or if you will ever be used by God- for His will and His purpose? Let me reassure you of this... If God gave you the skill you have and you are where He wants you to be, than your work is valuable and significant in His sight. Let’s look at things in a different manner. What kind of carpenter do you suppose Jesus was? Do you think that the tables He made sat uneven? Do you think He took shortcuts or did the bare minimum? Nope... neither do I. The Bible tells us: “whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men (col3:23). Know that God has placed you in this exact place to impact the most for His Kingdom- so the question has to be asked what kind of impact are we having? Have a blessed day.

2019-04-26

How bright do you shine?

Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, Who delights greatly in His commandments (psm112:1). It has been said that we Christians should stand out like a sparkling diamond on against a dark velvet background. We are to be more wholesome than anyone else. We are to be poised, cultured, courteous, gracious- but firm in the thing that we do and do not do. We are to laugh and be radiant and refusing to allow the unbelieving world to pull us down to its level. As followers of Christ, we are meant to be different, and if we are truly following Christ, we will be different. But just being different is not enough. We should be the cleanest, the most holy, the kindest, the most unselfish, the friendliest, courteous, most understanding, thoughtful, truest, and most loving people on Earth. The standard is set HIGH I know, but we serve a big God! As we follow Christ, He will bring all of theses attributes to our character. It doesn’t happen all at once, but it does happen IF we let Christ rule and reign in our lives. The Bible tells us, “Those who are wise will shine like the brightest of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever “ (dan12:3). So the question has to be asked, “Does your life shine like a diamond on a dark velvet background?” If not, ask Christ to start to revealing those characteristics of Him in you. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-25

Choose wisely

We all like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way (isa53:60). Our lives are full of decisions. Some of them are minor and relatively insignificant, but others are major, shaping our lives forever. Sometimes we may not even realize it, but they can have enormous consequences if we have made poor decisions. God cares about the decisions we make- good, bad, big and little- and the reason is because He loves us and wants what is best for us. When we make poor decisions in life, God grieves over our foolishness, He know that we are only hurting ourselves. He knows this because it is our natural tendency- we like sheep- will easily wander astray, from our only Shepherd- who keeps us safe and guides us. What decisions are you facing? Are you relying on you own wisdom or the wisdom of other? This time ask God to guide you and show you His way. Remember: His wisdom is always the best-ALWAYS. God promise is for us: “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go”(psm32:8). Have a blessed day.

2019-04-23

Hurtful Words

They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim their words like deadly arrows (psm64:3). We all have herd them, maybe even have spoke them ourselves-hurtful words, you know the ones “your ugly, too fat, stupid, slow” an endless list. Often, perhaps more than we realize, these words were spoken thoughtlessly or carelessly. But maybe these words were meant to sting- and sting they did. When hurtful words are hurled at us, I wish our first reaction would be to ask ourselves if there is any validity in them (sadly this is our last reaction). If there is any truth to them (we need to be honest), ask God to help us with any correction or change that is needed. Even when words of malice are spoken, we still need God’s help with our hurts- even if these words were spoken ten years ago or one day ago- we need God’s help. Sometimes (maybe like me) those hurtful words stayed with us, maybe they even shaped who we are. But we don’t have to allow them to stay in our minds rent free, with the help of our loving God, He can and will take these hurtful words way from us. I can promise you, if the words have part of who you are- the process of removing the scars will not be easy- but you have to be willing to let them go. The only way I know is to let God heal you from them. Are you ready to let go of those hurtful words? Have a blessed day.

2019-04-21

Happy Easter

God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power (1cor6:14). That first Easter morning, an angel of the Lord came to the garden where Jesus’ body laid, he rolled away the stone to permit air and light to fill His tomb. This sepulchral was no longer an empty vault or even a dreary mausoleum; Nope- it has become a life-affirming place that radiated the glory and power of living God! No longer was the tomb a dark, fearsome prison- but it is now a reminder of the celestial light that swept aside the shadows of death. Christ’s resurrection changed it once and for all! An unknown poet wrote of the tomb, “‘Tis now a cell where angels use to come and go with heavenly news.” It has been said that no words of men or angels can adequately describe the height, nor depth, the length or breath of the glory to which the world awakened to when Jesus came forth to life from the pall of death. Christ’s promise has been fulfilled:”Because I live, you will live also (jhn14:19). Remain strong in this promise... Happy Easter!

2019-04-19

Pure joy...

Consider it pure joy, my brother, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance (jms1:2-3). Our verse reminds us that difficulties and trials come in many shapes and sizes. It can be a soured relationship, an unexpected illness, a sudden disability or even the death of a loved one. It is natural for us to shrink back from any kind of trial. Wanting to be free of it or to get over it as quickly as possible, desiring to get back to some type of peace and serenity. We each know life can change in a matter of seconds. But the real question is how will we react when life’s trials hit us. Will we lash out in anger or withdraw in despair? Or will we react with hatred and seek revenge? Maybe (and sometimes as a last resort) will we turn to God in faith and seek His help? The trials we face in life will do one of two things- they will either turn us away from God or drive us toward His loving embrace. When we choose the latter of the two, and allow God to lead us through our trial- our faith will grow stronger- and we will be better equipped to meet our next challenge that comes our way. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-18

Give thanks

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts... And be thankful (col3:15). When something goes wrong in our day, week, month, year our usual response is not thankfulness. We may have had a hundred good things happen to us, but let one bad thing happen and that’s all we can think about. And it is for this reason that the Bible tells us, “In everything give thanks”(1thes5:18). So, no matter what happens (good or bad) we are to give thanks. We are to cultivate a spirit of thankfulness. We should be thanking God for every blessing He has given us. Thank God for sending His Son. Thank God even when things go wrong, thank Him that things aren’t worse than they really are- and that nothing can remove us from His hand. We should have an attitude of thankfulness for life in all circumstances, even when life throws us a curve ball, that we still have a reaction of thankfulness. Matthew Henry once wrote after being mugged, “Let me be thankful first because I was never robbed before; second, although they took my wallet, they didnot take my life; third because although they took my all, it was not much; fourth, because it was I who was robbed, and not I who robbed. I wonder how thankful we would be under these same circumstances? Could or would we act the same way? Have a blessed day.

2019-04-17

A new heart and mind

I will give them a new heart and a new mind (esk11:1 9). When we come in contact with the living God, we will never be the same again. His divine fire either draws or drives, saves or destroys, helps or hinders. Accepted and utilized, it becomes a boom or a blessing. Rejected, it becomes a bane and a curse. At Calvary- one dying thief was drawn to the warmth of the Savior; his response was faith and he was saved. The other dying thief turned away and rejected God’s compassion and he was lost forever. God will take the weak and make them strong. He will take a vile man and make him clean. He takes a worthless man and make him worth while. He will take the sinful man and makes him pure. The Bible tell us in the book of Ezekiel, “I will give them a new heart and a new mind. I will take away their stubborn heart of stone and give them an obedient heart”(ezk11:19). We will never be the same once we meet our Savior face to face, our hearts and minds are changed forever! What differences has He made in our lives? Have a blessed day.

2019-04-15

Each day is a gift

No man has power over the wind to contain it; so no one has power over the day of his death (eccl8:8). Our lives are in God’s hands, even when we think we have it under control. Even our next breath belongs to God and it is a gift from Him. If God we’re to withdraw His hand us, our life would end- no matter what doctors and modern can promise to do for us. The Bible tells us, “When you take away their breath, they die and return to dust”(psm104:29). How does this make a difference? This should remind us of our dependence on God. I think all to often we are so consumed with the distractions of life, that we assume that our lives and future are all about us- but it isn’t. God gave life to this world and to us and one day (sooner or later). He will bring it to an end. But it’s not all gloom and doom. But this should (and I hope it does) remind us that each day we live is a gift from God that should be used wisely, joyfully and ultimately for His glory. And our gift of each day should also remind us of an even greater gift- the gift that Christ has given us, the gift of eternal life through His death. Remember: be thankful for each day that God has given us- our gift of today and His gift of eternal life in Heaven with Him. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-09

What do you fear?

The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear?(psm27:1). This is a fact: the Lord is my (our) light and my (our)salvation. So, why should we be afraid ? Since our Lord fears nothing, why should we fear anything? The Bible tells us that our God is a, “very present help in trouble”(psm46:1). So, if we can’t trust our all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving God of the universe to help us, who or where do we turn? But we can trust God? He is able and He waits anxiously to deliver us from all sorts of trouble. He waits to give us strength to overcome the temptation to sin that separates us from Him. He waits to give us the courage to confront our problems, He gives us practical wisdom to help us deal with them. So, what do we fear today? Maybe your like me, you fear the physical pain of an illness, where the pain is so great that you can face another day of it, or maybe you feel the emptiness of the loss of a loved one, the thought of facing another day without them can be overwhelming. These are just a few of mine, each of us have our own fears. But no matter what our fears are, ask God to help us to turn them over to Him. And remember: “The Lord is my (our) light and my (our) salvation; Whom shall I (we) fear?” Please don’t feel like you have to face your fears alone, God is there to help. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-08

No accident

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart (jer1:5). Our verse tells us that God not only knows what is going on in our lives, but He knew all about us before we were born. He knew how short or tall we would be, He knew what color eyes and hair would have. God has given us life and has put us here at this time (not a hundred year ago or a hundred years in the future). We are not here by accident; we are here by His design. This is the same for every person on Earth (even the ones who haven’t been born yet), we are important in God’s eyes. Sometimes we scorn those who are different, but God calls us all valuable, so valuable that He sent His one and only Son that we could have a relationship with Him. Every human life is sacred. Please don’t believe the lie of those who would say otherwise- those that would take the life of an unborn child- just for the sake of the inconvenience that it might bring to the mother. Again, every human life is sacred and we must never loose sight of this fact (as many have). Not only does God know us (even if we don’t know Him), but He put us here for a purpose. Again we are not a mistake. The Bible tells us that, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful”(psm139:14). Never forget: God has made us for this time and for a specific purpose. Ask God what your purpose is and start fulfilling it. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-07

Suffering

The eternal God is your refuge (duet33:27). When we think of suffering, we usually think only of physical pain. But psychological pain is just as real (maybe even more devastating). Sometimes our inner grief or sorrow is hard(so hard) to express to those around us. Our grief and sorrow can sap us of our strength and paralyze us with anxiety. Sometimes it can ruin a relationship by gripping us so tightly that it becomes a psychological illness. The apostle Paul knew what it was to suffer when he told the church in Corinth, “out of much affliction and anguish of heart”(2cor2:4). Our Lord knew suffering as well, while in the garden of Gethsemane, “He being in agony...prayed more earnestly” (lk22:44). The apostle Peter also knew, after denying Christ three times, “went and wept bitterly “(lk22:62). The most important thing to remember in times of suffering is that we are not alone. Satan will try to convince us and we may even feel like we are- but we are not! God is with us even when we are in great pain, when our minds are at it weakest and we are consumed with grief and sorrow- God is there and He loves us. He has not abandoned us. Remember: “The eternal God is your refuge and underneath are the everlasting arms”(duet33:27). Are you resting in His everlasting arms? Have a blessed day.

2019-04-06

Reaping and Sowing

Do not be deceived... A man reaps what he sows (gal6:7). One of life’s hardest lessons to learn is that we cannot turn back time and right a wrong that we have done. When we make a wrong decision or act foolishly, we have to “man up” to the consequences- hard as it may be. So, in the terms of our Bible: we must reap what we have sown. The question has been asked:”Why bother to ask for God’s forgiveness, if nothing is going to change and we still face the consequences of our actions?” The answer is, that it is the only way to deal with the guilt. Deep down inside, we may feel unclean, ashamed or embarrassed, by what we have done. But when we turn to Jesus and seek His forgiveness, our burden of guilt is lifted. We also need forgiveness to keep ourselves from becoming spiritually hardened. When we don’t confess our sins it inevitably leads to spiritual coldness. Unconfessed sin hinders us from talking to God (our sin does block us from our desire to talk to God). Are there any unconfessed sin in your life that need to be taken God? Ask Him today- He is faithful to forgive us of our sins- today, tomorrow and always! Have a blessed day.

2019-04-05

Pure in Heart

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God (mt5:8). Have you ever wondered why Christ wants us to have a pure heart? It s because our hearts (our inner being- the very center of who we are) dictates all of our actions. It’s from out of our hearts come all of our motives, our desires, our goal and our emotions. So, it rightful to say if our hearts are not right, neither will our actions. Jesus tells us: “From within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness “(mk7:21-22). So if so much bad stuff is with in us- how can Christ give us a pure heart? When we surrender our hearts to Christ- this is the beginning our of pure hearts. Christ wants us to have a pure heart and He will give us one if we let Him. But it means we have to put aside the things we are doing and allow God to change our hearts. Christ continues to purify our hearts each day as we walk with Him, little by little. Do your actions reveal that you are pure in heart? When we are pure in heart not only will we see God, but other will see the Spirit of God living in you... this is His promise. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-03

Watch you mouth...

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger (prov15:1). Behind these words is a profound truth- IF we would only learn to heed its advise. Our tongues have enormous power for good and for evil. How many of us wear the scars of harsh words said to us? How many of us have shaped our lives from those same words? In the same manner, how many of us would do whatever we could to help the one who says a kind word, or words of encouragement to us? It is for good reason that the apostle James tells us: “The tongue is a fire, a word of evil among the body parts... With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men who have been made in God’s likeness”(jms3:6,9). The words said and the resulting actions of men, have brought about great wars and even greater revivals. The smallest words of “please” and “thank you” can calm our hearts and motivate our actions. Our words are an expression of our inner hearts and minds. Words of gratitude are signs of our Godly peace-words of anger are signs of inner discontentment. So when (not if) someone tries to provoke you to anger, or maybe deals with you in a way that makes you want to strike back- don’t take the bail, but instead- immediately ask God to remind you that,”a gentle word turns away wrath.” This will probably not be easy- because we will want to retaliate- but the result will be worth it. Allow God to show you His way of encouragement. Have a blessed day.

2019-04-02

Troubles

God will wipe away every tear from their eyes (rev7:17). In the book of Job, he tells us, “Man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upwards”(5:7). And this statement is true, have you ever met someone who does not have troubles- some more than others- but all of us have troubles. Fear and sickness rob us of our happiness; broken relationships and shattered dreams destroy our peace. But be assured, one of God greatest promises is that all of life’s troubles will be forgotten in Heaven-where we are told, “there shall be no more death, no sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away”(rev21:4). This is our reality of Heaven. When we have this great of certainty and assurance, the future holds no terrors that we cannot face. Beyond all of our crisis lies Heaven. So we who are Christians should never be filled with fear, discouragement or despondency, but if we remember our promise: Heaven is our future home, for this is one of many assurances we have! So, are you ready for Heaven and all its promises, I sure hope so.... Have a blessed day.

2019-04-01

Weaknesses

Blessed is he who has regard for the weak (Pam41:1). Our weaknesses come in all forms, some of which can easily overlooked. Some of our weaknesses are obvious: a chronic illness or a physical disability. Sometimes our weaknesses are less obvious (but no less real): a tendency to make bad decisions,or a personality trait that alienates others. And then we have weaknesses that we may never detect, because the person has successfully hidden them from themselves and others. Sometimes those who seem to be the strongest on the outside are the weakest on the inside. But no matter our weaknesses- God sees them and knows all about them, and because He knows about our weaknesses, He wants to help us with them and in turn He wants us to help others with their weaknesses. If you haven’t already asked God to make you sensitive to those around you who are weak (whatever their weaknesses might be), then do so.. and begin to help them even if you are not sure what needs to be done. God will show you practical ways, that can help those in need. Making sure that we always point those around us to the One who can and will help in our greatest weaknesses- Jesus- our mighty healer. Do you know someone who is in need of help? Start today. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-31

Meekness

Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth (mt5:5). No one is meek by nature. We want our own way and if anyone blocks our path, we are hurt, angry, resentful and may even want to get revenge. But what does it mean to be meek? It is not letting others to walk all over you (like some may think), true meekness is restraining one’s own power, so to allow room for another. In other words, putting aside our own power to allow God’s grace and power to flourish within us. We have examples of meekness in the Old and New Testament. Moses was meek, but it took God forty years to work it into him. Peter was anything but meek- he was always doing whatever popped into his brain first. But God worked meekness into his character. Before his conversion, Paul was not meek- his main job was to persecute Christians. But he was able to later writer,”The fruit of the Spirit is... gentleness, goodness... meekness”(gal5:22-23). It is in us to be proud and self-assured not meek! But IF we allow it, the Spirit of God can and will transform out lives through yielding our lives to Him and allowing Him to develop us into the image of Christ! It doesn’t happen all at once, but as we walk Christ, He will teach us His meekness. Are you ready to be meek? Have a blessed day.

2019-03-30

Good Samaritan

(Be) blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life (phil2:15-16). When we have our own problems they have a way of blocking out everything and everyone else. And it’s not necessarily wrong to give attention to our own problems- and with God’s help- we can overcome them. But when our problems deafen us to the hurts of others or when they make us fail to reach out to someone we could and should be helping- then we have become part of the darkness instead of shining like stars and holding out the word of life as we should. Do we remember the Bible story of the Good Samaritan? No doubt that he was preoccupied with the stresses and strains of his journey- but he stopped and took care of the man who had been left for dead (lk10:25-37). Are you so preoccupied by the stresses and strains of life, are you allowing them to keep you from being a blessing to others who are in need? Ask God to free you from whatever is preoccupying you- so that you might be a light for Christ in the midst of this dark world. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-29

Understanding love

In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us (1jhn4:10). It has been said that,”the supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved”(Victor Hugo). “Love is the first requirement for mental health”(Sigmund Freud). But many of us go through life feeling unloved, unlovable or have a skewed understandingly love. Maybe we were criticized or ignored as a child, maybe our family was always caught up in one conflict or another. Maybe bad family choices were made which confirmed our belief of unworthiness. I am here to tell you- that no matter the reason- our emotions can and will lie to us. Our feelings will tell us that we are not good enough to be loved, but this is a lie. God loves us and when we start seeing ourselves the way God sees us- our attitudes toward ourselves will begin to change. The Bible tells us that, “you are beautiful, For you are fearfully and wonderfully made”(psm139:14). God never makes a mistake- so don’t believe the lie. If God didn’t love us, He wouldn’t have sent His Son to die for us. We know this truth, “By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us”(1jhn3:16). God loves (us) you! Remember this promise everyday, it can and does make a difference. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-27

Hope...

My heart is glad, and... My flesh also will rest in hope(psm16:9). It has been said that the greatest psychological, spiritual and medical need that all people have is the need for HOPE. “Hope is the medicine, I use more than any other- hope can cure nearly anything” (Dr. N. Wilson, cardiologist). Professor Harold Wolff stated that, “Hope like faith and a purpose in life is medicinal. This is not a statement of belief, but a conclusion proved by meticulously controlled scientific experiment.” When our hope dies, despair will and does overwhelm us. Our hope is both biologically and psychologically vital. When Hope is lost, suicide rates go up, and our since and respect for life dwindles. We must have hope- and our true hope comes from Jesus Christ. He gives us hope for today and hope for tomorrow. He promises, He will never leave us alone. He promises us a place in Heaven. He gives us a purpose to live for and the direction to lead us. So, the question has to be asked... “Where does your hope lie?” I hope it is in the promise of Christ and His great hope! Have a blessed day.

2019-03-26

By faith...

This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe (rms3:22). Have you ever stop to think of all the stuff we accept by faith every day? By faith we assume the chair which we sit in will not collapse. By faith we assume other drivers will stop at their red light. By faith we assume when we turn on the light switch our light comes on. Faith is a greater part of our lives than most of us realize. Someone who is a skeptic may protest that these are thing that we can see and touch, but with God we can do neither. But look at the world around us, with all of its beauty and complexities. Isn’t it more logical to believe in an all-powerful and all-wise Creator, than to think the universe happened by chance? Our real foundation of our faith is Jesus Christ: He was God in human flesh, and proved it by dying and and then coming back from the grave. If we want to know that God exists, we need to look no farther than Jesus. That’s where our faith and confidence should be. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-25

What shapes your thinking?

You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well for so I am (jhn13:13). Phone calls, text messages, t.v. Ads, magazines, e-mails, social media, videos... each shape our thinking. Each convince us that the road to happiness is really paved with beauty, possessions, money and fame- the list is endless. They persuade us that the most important things in life is financial success, the esteem of others, power or even sex! It’s hard to resist the cumulative impact of this constant bombardment of messages we receive everyday. But God tells us that our thinking must be shaped by His truth. What our society call valuable- God call worthless. What our world scorns- God exalts. The Bible tells us, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways”(isa55:8). Where does your thoughts wander when we are bombarded each day? Are we grounded enough in God’s Word that we are not tempted to follow every whime of our world? I pray that you are grounded in His Word and promises to withstand this bombardment. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-24

Wide is the gate...

Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it (mt7:13). Any advertisement agent will tell you that the best way to get a product sold is to convince us that everyone is using it- you know (“if everyone else is using it, then it must be amazing, so I should have it too!”). You know Satan’s tactics are not much different. He tell us,”Look at the way most people are living. They are having a good time- enjoying life, living for themselves, not bothering about God or eternity. Follow them, they are on the path to a better life. But this is just one of the many lies Satan tell us. Jesus warned us that the world’s way will always lead to destruction and Hell. Christ calls us to a different way- His way. Yes, it will be harder and not many will choose it. But He alone offers us the true peace and joy that only come from knowing Christ. And it is His path alone that leads us to eternal life and our promise of Heaven. So, the question has to be asked, “Which path are you on?” Have a blessed day.

2019-03-23

The importance of prayer

If My people...pray and seek My face...I will hear from Heaven (2chrn7:14). From Genesis to Revelation, the Bible gives us stories of answered prayers. People of God who prayed and turned the tides of history. The Bible tells us that Elijah prayed and God sent fire from Heaven to consume the alters of Baal (the god of the Canaanite). Elisha prayed and the son of the Shunammite women was raised from the dead. Hannah prayed and God gave her a son, Samuel (king of Israel). The apostle Paul prayed and dozens of churches were born in Asia Minor and Europe. The apostle Peter prayed and Dorcas was raised to life. Each of these believers prayers were the natural outflow of their deeper inner faith. Their prayers were part of a greater whole of godly lives lived for God’s glory. Our passage tells us “IF”, this tiny word represents a great action. Most don’t take the time to pray, well maybe a quick prayer before a meal. When we take the time to pray, our promise is that God will and does hear our prayers. But if we do not, don’t expect God to answer your prayers. So, the question has to be asked, are you expecting God to answer your prayer? Are you praying out of a deep inner faith or just as a quick after thought? Prayer one of the greatest privilege a child of God can use. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-22

Loving others

Love your neighbors as yourself (lev19:18). I wonder (and maybe you have too)why it is so much easier to see someone else’s faults more than our own? There are probably lots of reasons why, but I would venture to say the biggest reason is because we naturally love ourselves more than we love other people. And because we love ourselves so much, we don’t like to criticize or even want to admit our own faults (we are all perfect in our own minds!). Admitting we are wrong is too painful, and most of us are whimps when it comes to any kind of pain (ok, maybe it’s just me). Either way the Bible tells us to love other as much as we love ourselves. So, how do we truly begin to love other (which by the way is easy when we like them, but what if we don’t like them?). First, we ask God to help us see them the way He sees them. Because if anyone know the faults of men, it’s God. But for some reason God still chooses to love us anyway. Secondly, ask God to replace our selfishness with His love, the self-giving love that sent His One and Only Son to the cross for all of us. And, lastly begin to show our love with a kind word, a helping hand and maybe even a prayer or two. It might be difficult at first- but like anything in life the more we do it the easier it will be. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-20

Surrender

Whoever loses his life for My sake... will save it (mk8:35). The question has been asked,”What is the key to victorious Christian living?” There is no magic formula, but if it could be described in one word it would be “surrender”. “How do we surrender our lives?” Our action and conditions of our hearts are the same as when we first committed our lives to Christ. But unlike our salvation experience, surrender takes more than one decision(which we will never mature successfully in the glow of our salvation). We cannot expect to stay married to our spouses, if we only tell them we love them, it take actions as well, showing them that we love them (commitment and communication). The same is when we walk (surrender) our lives to Christ. Christ tells us, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross DAILY and follow Me”(lk9:23). Remember the key to a victorious Christian life is surrender “daily”, (commitment and communication) not once in a while- but daily! Are we surrendering daily? I hope so... Have a blessed day.

2019-03-19

God Created

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (gen1:3). When we think of God, what comes to mind? A grandfather figure, like the paintings of old, maybe a cop or judge, maybe some vague or impersonal power or force? Look at our verse again, it tells us that “God created.” Not that God guessed or that it was by happenstance, but “ created.” Try and comprehend all the power that it took to bring into being all the billion stars that our scientists haven’t even discovered yet! Not to mention the new discoveries that our modern medicine are just now discovering. Can we even begin to understand the wisdom it took to develop the complex laws that do govern all of creation from the spin of the galaxies to our smallest subatomic particles? Keep in mind that just cause something hasn’t been discovered, doesn’t mean that God hasn’t already placed in creation, it just means we haven’t discovered it! The Bible also tells us,”Since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities- His eternal power and divine nature- have been made’”(rms1:20). We should never underestimate God’s love for us. And because of His great power and love for us, He is worthy of our trust and worship. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-18

Unpardonable sin...

I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them. But the blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; He is guiltily of eternal sin (mk3:28-29). The question has been asked (maybe you have asked it) numerous times: “What is the unpardonable (unforgiving) sin?” Our passage tells us: “All sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them.” Jesus during His ministry forgave: the women caught in adultery, the muderer on the the cross next to Him, Christ forgave Peter, His disciple who denied Him three times, Christ even forgave Saul (who became Paul) who tried in vain to stamp out the beginning Church. So, if God could and did forgive them, He can and does forgive us- no matter what we have done. Back to the question- the only sin that God cannot nor will not forgive is the rejection of Christ. Some have asked why would a loving God reject us and send us in a place called Hell, but I would counter that question with this, why would you reject a All loving God who can and will forgive all of our sins? The choice is yours. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-15

Everlasting love

I have loved you with an everlasting love, Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you (jer31:2). Can anyone measure or describe the love of God? Our Bible is a testament of God’s love for us. When the Bible is preached of His justice, it is a just tempered with love. When His righteousness is preached, it is righteousness founded on love. When the resurrection of Christ is preached, it is preached the miracle of love. When it is preached of the abiding presence of Christ, it is the power of Christ’s love for us. When the return of Christ is preached, it is the fulfillment of His love for us being preached. No matter where you stand or the sins that we have committed, no matter the shame we have- God loves us! We may be standing nearest to the gates of Hell, God still loves us. The proof is Jesus, God’s one and only Son, who want to the cross for us. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believed in Him should not perish, but have everlasting ire”(jhn3:16). Have a blessed day.

2019-03-14

Death of a believer

Precious in the sight of the Lord, Is the death of His saints (psm116:5). Death is something that all of us will experience. Mortality is 100%, no one escapes it. We may meet it with resignation, denial or even without a moments thought- but it will come. For some of us us death will come sooner than others. But as a believer in Christ our view of death is completely different than the unbeliever. We do not fear death- because we know it is our pathway to the house of our Lord. “I desire to depart and be with Christ which is better by far”(phil1:23). For those of us who have experienced the death of a loved one-be encouraged. Our loved one is in a far better place. The most difficult part of losing a loved one is dealing with our grief and learning to live without our loved one. This is no easy task, it has only been little over a year since the passing of my only daughter, and I am still learning to live without her. But I am learning- that’s the important part. It’s easy to say and hard to do. If you or someone you know is having a difficult time learning to live without a loved one- be encouraged. One day we are promised we will see them again. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-13

Lessons from Disney...

Everyone who wants to live a godly life in Jesus Christ will be persecuted (2tim3:12). The Bible tells, that the apostle Paul knew what it meant to be persecuted. In the book of Acts, it tells us that He and his champions were persecuted almost everywhere they went. Millions of Christians around the world face some form of persecution everyday. Their faithfulness to Christ can mean rejection by their families, loss of their jobs, social ostracism, injustice, violence, imprisonment, or even death. We may never meet these unsung hero’s of the faith this side of Heaven, but their commitment and courage, hopefully will challenge and inspire us all. We should be praying for them and maybe we can learn from their examples. We may never face their persecution that the have- but each of us knows what it’s like to swim up stream against the current of this unbelieving world. Just as Dory in the Disney movie would say,”just keep swimming.” Don’t let those around you sway your moral or spiritual values. Be faithful to Christ who for your sake,”endured the cross, scorning the shame (heb12:2). Have a blessed day.

2019-03-12

What does the world teach

Blessed are they whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord (psm119:1). The Bible’s presents us with a view of life that is the exact opposite of what the wold around us promotes. The news, media, tv, entertainment and lifestyles all promote the image of “Live for yourself, have a good time, and indulge yourself.’ And when you do, “you’ll be happy and blessed.” But this is far from the truth, God calls us to a different way- His way. All of our blessings come from Him. In fact, any other way produces the exact opposite of what it promises. Some of the most miserable people I know (and maybe you do too) are highly successful according to the world’s standards, but deep down inside they are restless and spiritually empty. Take a moment and think, have you fallen into the world’s traps- following its self-indulgent and self-centered motives? It can and does happen without us even knowing it. Please don’t let this happen- keep your eyes and mind on Christ and make your life goal to live according to the Word and many promises of Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-11

Salvation verses discipleship

As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also (jms2:26). The Bible tells us that a Christian is one who not only trusts Christ as Savior, but also beys Him as Lord. This is the essence of Christian discipleship; believing and following. There is a big difference between hell insurance (salvation), verses following (discipleship). The Bible makes no separation between belief and obedience (we are the ones who does the separation). They are linked together as one, because if we truly believe, we will truly follow. Trust will make us part of God’s Kingdom, but our love and obedience for His will are the badges of our citizenship in that Kingdom. This is why our lives are a happy blend of trust and toil, resting and striving, receiving and doing. God does His part, we must also do ours. The farmers crop is a blessing from God, but He doesn’t just sit and hope for the best, it requires work on the farmers part. God might give a person the gift of music, but it take practice and discipline to make the music come alive. Can the lost world see the difference between hell insurance and following in our lives? I sure hope so. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-10

Never to hurried to pray

Whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you (jhn16:23). It is amazing how much time Jesus spent in prayer. No matter what was going on, He was never too hurried to pray. He prayed often- never a day went by without Him praying (in the morning and evening) pouring His heart out to His Father. How much different are we? We might memorize a versed here or there, saying a quick prayer before we eat or maybe if we are lucky, saying some briefly before we fall asleep. This is not how God wants us to talk to Him. Any great relationship begins and end with communication. All relationships are based on how much we communicate with each other. God has given us the wonderful opportunity to pray, but sadly we don’t pray as we should, most of us pray very little at best. We would do good to follow Christ’s example. You can do it... start out slow, remember, whatever is important to you, you will make time for it! How important is prayer to you? I hope you begin today? Have a blessed day.

2019-03-09

Keeping His ways

I have kept His ways and not turned aside (job23:11). We read it in the book of Job and wonder (or at least I did):”Why does God allow suffering?” There is not an easy answer to this question, because it strikes us at the center of our deepest questions about God. I mean (and it has been said by others), how could a loving and gracious God allow suffering? Some may even argue, if God let’s us suffer, it means that He doesn’t love us. But this thinking is wrong. God does love us and the proof is in the suffering He did not with hold from His Son Jesus while on the cross. So, what is the answer? First, must understand the character of God. This is what Job discovered. God never gave Job a logical reason for his suffering, but through Job’s sufferings he came to realize that God could be trusted. Job also discovered that God is merciful and loving. So, we too can trust God, not because He always gives us what we want or answers all of our questions, but simply because He is our God. He loves us and wants what is best for us even if means we suffer. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-08

Children

Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him (psm127:3). In our homes today there is perhaps more pressure on parents in raising children than other time. More mom’s are working whether by necessity or desire than every before. But many women feel guilty about leaving their children to the care of other or have them to come home to an empty house (I know I did). Most parents devote the vast majority of their time to their careers. Is it any wonder that so many families are in trouble. Is there any other achievements in life that is are equal to a happy family and kids growing up to praise their parents? Every material possession we have will pass away, but the heritage of godly children is priceless and timeless. It is our primary responsibility as parents to be sure that our children grow up in homes where God is honored and the love of Christ reigns. Do our children (or grandchildren) sense that Christ is at the center of your life and our homes? Have a blessed day.

2019-03-07

A straight path

In all ways acknowledge (God), and He will make your path straight (pro3:6). What decisions are you facing? Family decisions, health issues, job decisions, each of these weight heavily on us. Look again at our verse, in it is the truth that God knows what is best for us and wants to guide us- showing us how to make God honoring decisions. So, how do we make God honoring decisions? Does it mean that we are to sit and wait until God gives us some kind of sign or inner conviction? Heavens no, not necessarily... God wants us to be practical. We of course should be in constant prayer about our concerns, but God would also have us to be practical. We should do our research when needed; we should understand ourselves and our God given gifts. We should seek godly advise from mature Christians. Make sure you are making your decisions in light of God’s Word. God will NEVER lead us to do anything that is contrary to His Word. Keep in mind that God may only lead you one step at a time- because that’s all that we can handle. So... don’t be anxious- trust God to lead you and He will! Have a blessed day.

2019-03-06

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything (phil4:6). What do we do when we have a problem? I would venture to say we worry. Most of us do, and are probably pretty good at it! But does our worrying ever solve our problems? So, why worry? I once have heard someone say that Worry is like sitting in a rocking chair, it never gets you anywhere, but it does give you something to do. The Bible gives us the account of Hezekiah, who gives us a way not to worry:”Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messenger, and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord. Then Hezekiah prayed before the Lord (2kng19:14-15). When life throws it’s worse at us, (family issues, job stresses, or health issues) we turn to the Lord as a last resort instead of seeking Him as our first choice. We would do good to follow Hezekiah’s example. Turn to God FIRST, with our life’s problems, He is more capable of handling them better then we every could. So are you following Hezekiah ‘s example or the person in the rocking chair? Have a blessed day.

2019-03-05

Idea of peace

He Himself is our peace (eph2:14). There’s always the idea to bring peace to earth, people and organizations have raised monies, signed treaties, and books have been written all in an effort to find the best formula for peace. World War 1 was deemed “the war to end all wars,”but of course it wasn’t. We have fought many wars since than. But our warfare doesn’t stop on a global level, we fight on personal levels as well, we fight with our spouses, parents, children, siblings, neighbors, co-workers and bosses. So what is to be done? It sounds so easy to say,”We need to turn to God,” but for most of us it is the last thing we do. But only God or should I say the love of God can remove the poison of greed, hatred and jealousy and replace it with contentment, compassion, and forgiveness. Only God can calm the violence and anger that rage within us, replacing it with His peace and love. Whatever wars rage in our lives place them at the foot of the cross and ask Christ replace it with His peace. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-04

Patience...

The testing of your faith produces patience (jms1:3). Patience doesn’t come easy to us- there might be one or two of us who doesn’t have a problem with it, but for the vast majority of us it’s a problem. Let something not go as planned or something come up unexpectedly- we become impatient and frustrated... sometimes we are so frustrated with thing, that we lash out at those around us. The Bible tells us, “Be patient brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield it’s valuable crop and how patient he (farmer) is for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near”(jms5:7-8). Being patient does not mean we are to grit our teeth and bear it, hoping for the best. It is an attitude of expectation. Our Heavenly Father knows the final product of what is happening to us- and He would have us link our patience to our faith. Ask God for the gift of patience-and then use it. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-03

God’s life line

I have set before you life and death...therefore choose life (duet30:19). Before NASA’s space shuttle and the SpaceX programs, American Navy ship’s and helicopters would recover our astronauts in their tiny space capsules that had parachuted into the sea. I remember watching this on tv. How like God this operation was, He hovers over the world, looking to pluck from sin those immortal souls. He tosses out a line to all who are in trouble. Some grab on to God’s line and freely receive the gift of His Son, Christ. These souls are the one who are saved and given the promise of Heaven. But tragically most ignore God’s saving line-believing they don’t need it, thinking that they can can make it on their own, you know,”I’m a good person.” Unfortunately, they are lost, not because God rejected them, but because they have rejected God. If you know or love someone who is lost.. please don’t stop sharing Christ’s saving life line. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-02

Members of Christ’s body

For we are members of ( Christ’s) body(eph5:30). There is only one thing that counts as far as our salvation is concerned and it’s our relationship with Christ. If we have admitted our sins and truly trusted Christ to save us- then nothing can I unsave us (as some would have you to believe). But God would have us to build our relationship with Him and part of that building is to become part of a body of believers. God wants us to grow and understand Him better and one of the ways to do this is our fellowship with others believers. The Bible tells us,”As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another”(prov27:17). It also tells us, “Let us not give up meeting together... but let us encourage one another (heb10:25). Ask God to lead you to a church where you can grow spiritually. A church where His Word is taught, where you can be encouraged and where you can grow stronger in Christ. Don’t be afraid to get involved in church activities (Bible studies, prayer group, mission projects, or mentoring)each will help you to grow. Have a blessed day.

2019-03-01

As far as the east from the west

As fas as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions (sin) from is (psm103:12). Have you ever wondered how far it is from the east to west? Don’t think circularly, think linearly it’s as far as you can think and more... So, if we could know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has completely forgiven us, what reason would we have to keep feeling guilty? Absolutely none, remember think linearly. God does offer us just that: completely and totally, no matter what we have done. The Bible tells us, “For God made Christ who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ (2cor5:21). We don’t need to wonder IF we have been forgiven; we don’t need to carry around a burden of guilt. If our memories from the past return (they will) immediately remind ourself of this truth- “If we confess our sins he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1jhn1:9). Remember to thank God for forgiving us freely and fully, because of what Christ has done for us...remember as far as the east is from the west! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-28

All we can do is pray!

Pray without ceasing(1thes5:17). How many times have we heard someone say,”All I can do is pray”? Prayer is the most powerful weapon we possess. Our prayers unlock the doors of Heaven and the power of God. The Bible tells us,”You do not have because you do not ask”(james4:2). It also tells us,” Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God”(phil4:6). We are not only to pray for ourselves (which we probably do more of), but to pray for others, who are in need of prayer. You never know-the person you are praying for, you might be the only one praying for them. Please don’t think our prayer are like a gene in a bottle, granting our every wish- for when we do, we will be sorely disappointed. Prayers unlock the power of Heaven. Are you unlocking the power of your Almighty God? Why not- all you can do is pray- what a mighty statement! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-26

Sorry I haven’t sent any morning encouragements in the last few days. We are in the middle of moving, and am waiting to have our internet restored... I am not sure when it will be installed. So if you have any encouragement you would like to share with me ... I sure could use it! Thank you for your understanding and allowing me to share my morning encouragement with you. I’m sure I will be up and going soon! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-22

Pray without ceasing!

Pray without ceasing(1thes5:17). How many times have we heard someone say,”All I can do is pray”? Prayer is the most powerful weapon we possess. Our prayers unlock the doors of Heaven and the power of God. The Bible tells us,”You do not have because you do not ask”(james4:2). It also tells us,” Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God”(phil4:6). We are not only to pray for ourselves (which we probably do more of), but to pray for others, who are in need of prayer. You never know-the person you are praying for, you might be the only one praying for them. Please don’t think our prayer are like a gene in a bottle, granting our every wish- for when we do, we will be sorely disappointed. Prayers unlock the power of Heaven. Are you unlocking the power of your Almighty God? Why not- all you can do is pray- what a mighty statement! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-21

God’s Weapons

Before they call, I will answer; And while they are still speaking, I will hear” (isa65:24). Do ever wonder why our prayers are so important? Because we are up against almost overwhelming forces of spiritual opposition. I think we sometimes forget this. There is urgency in the gospel message and prayer (our prayers)is an essential weapon in advancing the gospel and growing of the saints (us). The Apostle Paul knew that,”the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for the pulling down strongholds”(2cor10:4). It is God’s desire that we who are Christians are to be concerned and burdened for the lost world. We should be praying for peace to come to the world and for wickedness to be turned back. “The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avail much” (james5:16). So the question has to be asked, how fervent and effectiveness your prayers? Have a blessed day.

2019-02-20

Christ Alone

Your faith and hope are in God (1pt1:21). We get so use to our world that we lose sight of the next. We get so use to the darkness and chaos of this world’s suffering and violence that we lose sight of the brightness of Him who alone could say, “I am the light of the world. “He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life”(jhn8:12). Christ alone is “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”(jhn1:29). Christ alone is our Hope for the hopeless, the Savior of the lost, the Guide of the wandering, He alone is “the radiance of God’s glory, and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word”(heb1:3). In today’s world we sometimes struggle with almost insurmountable problems- and we always will. But in the midst of this world persistent darkness we must never lose sight of Jesus. He alone is the hope we need. Keep you eyes on Jesus and the darkness of this world can fade into to the brightness of Him! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-19

Do others see Christ in you?

I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received (eph4:1). It has been said that the only Bible that others will ever read is the one they see demonstrated is the one we live as Christians. In other words, the way we live often speaks a whole lot louder then our word ever do... (let that sink in). So, the question has to be asked, what do other see when they look at you? Do they see Christ reflected in the way you live-can they see the change Christ has made in your life, the way you react to the trials in life, how Christ help you in your decision making? If, not why? If not, ask God to rule in your heart, allow Him to remake you into the person He wants you to be. Ask Him to help you to be sensitive to those around you, that in your life and your words, others may discover the joy and peace that can come only from knowing Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-02-18

God’s got this!

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding (prov3:5). There will always be secrets and motives of God that are beyond our own understanding. God knows everything- we do not. It is only when we get to Heaven will we understand God’s ways more fully. Based on what we do know about God’s character, we can trust that God is doing what is best for us, even when we don’t understand or agree with it. The Bible tells us, “I know the plans I have for you... plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”(jer29:11). It’s been said that God sees the right side up of the tapestry of our lives, while we only see the loose, frayed ends. Remember: God is in control (even even when our lives seem to be falling apart). No matter what comes our way we can say,”We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (roms8:28). So no matter what you are facing... God’s got it! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-17

Choose whom you will serve

Choose this day whom you will serve (josh24:15). Through out the Bible, people and nations have had to make decisions about their futures. Sometimes they have made the wrong choice and have suffered the consequences as a result. When we are faced with decisions we would do good to remember that God hasn’t left us in the dark. God loves us and wants what is best for us. He has a perfect path in life for us, and He wants us to choose it instead of the wrong paths Satan would tempt us with. Even when our way seems unclear, God gives us light. He gives us His Word, this make our decision making easier when we know its moral and spiritual principles. God also gives us wisdom (sometimes from fellow Christians) to understand our situation, and He also gives us the Holy Spirit to help us. Never make a decision without committing it to God and seeking His will. He has promised to guide us- and He will! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-16

Sufficient Grace

(God) said to (Paul), “My Grace is sufficient for you, for my power perfect in weakness (2cor12:9). God says the same thing to us when He calls us into service for His Kingdom. Maybe you have been faced with something, family illness, divorce, death of loved one. You may feel inadequate, defeated or discouraged, unsure that God will help you through your trial. Understand Satan will use this time to keep you from turning to God. But it is in these times with should be praying, asking fellow Christians to join us in prayer. Paul at his weakest cried out to God, and God’s response said, “My Grace is sufficient.” God’s response to us will be the same, He will not leaving us alone to flounder in our trial. He will lead us through, never leaving us alone. In deed, God’s Grace is sufficient no matter what we are facing. Have a blessed day.

2019-02-13

Weakness

The Spirit also helps in our weakness (rms8:26). Our bodies are the dwelling place of the third person of the Trinity. I wonder why we don’t rely on Him as we should. Probably because we don’t realize how weak we are or maybe how strong our Enemy is. Maybe we don’t think God will really help us in our time of need. But I bet most of us just think we can do it ourselves or that we have to do it. God already knows how weak we are, but we don’t realize how weak, unstable and unreliable we are. It is important for us to stand aside (which most of the time we don’t) and let God take over in all our choices and decisions. We know that the Spirit prays for us (rms8:26), and this should bring comfort. A victorious Christian is: in spite of our worries, inner conflicts and tribulations, is confident that God is in control and will be victorious in the end. So whatever difficulties or circumstances we are facing always remember:”Jesus is (our) victor!(C.tenBoom). Have a blessed day.

2019-02-12

Bridges

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved (acts4:12). The example is given;”Suppose you were riding down a road and you came to a deep gorge. You see the bridge is washes out keeping you from crossing over, and jumping is not an option. But then you notice a bridge a bit away. What would you have to do to get across this smaller bridge? First, you would have to believe that this bridge would hold you. Then commit yourself to it: put your full weight on it and walk across. This illiterates what it means to commit yourself to Christ. By His death and resurrection, Jesus bridges the gap between us and God- a gap caused by our sin. But simply believing intellectually that He has done this is not enough. Like the bridge, we must trust Him and commit our lives to Him. And when we do, we will discover that He can be trusted to save us because He truly is the bridge between us and God. Have a blessed day.

2019-02-11

Porcupines

(You are)fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household (eph2:19). It has been said that a church is like a group of porcupines in a snowstorm:we need each other to keep warm, but the closer we get the more we poke each other- and the more uncomfortable we become. But it shouldn’t be this way, our church should be a place of warmth and fellowship, a place where even the newest members or latest visitor feels welcomed... Can this be said of the church you attend? By simply attending a worship service doesn’t mean we automatically mean we have a close relationship with others. If you haven’t met anyone new lately, make an effort to get to know someone who has just started to visiting church. You never know, you might just be the person that they need to feel welcomed, maybe the extra encouragement or even the friendship they need to grow closer to Christ. If this sounds a little scary- remember that your best Friend of all- Jesus Christ- will be with you each step of the way. Have a blessed day.

2019-02-10

The joy of the Lord

The joy of the Lord is my strength (neh8:10). Some people have a warped sense of what a Christian life should be. Seeing talented, successful Christians, they attempt to imitate them. But when they discover that their own gifts are different they collapse in discouragement and overlook opportunities that are open to them. They have forgotten that they are here to serve Christ, not themselves. The apostle Paul tells us, “None of these things move me”(acts20:24). Few men have suffered as Paul did, yet he learned how to live above his circumstances (even in prison). We can do the same. Our key is to realize that we are here to serve Christ, not ourselves. God doesn’t promise us an easy life- free of troubles, trials, difficulties or temptations. He doesn’t call His children to a playground, He calls us to a battleground! In the midst of it all, when we serve Christ, we truly discover that,”the joy of the Lord is (our) strength.” Is the joy of the Lord your strength? Have a blessed day.

2019-02-09

Live at peace

If at all possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone (rms12:18). God’s will for us is to live at peace with everyone, but sometimes the door to a broken relationship seem closed forever. A marriage has died or a child is rejected. A father abandons his family or a mother want nothing to do with her children. Maybe a formed friends wants nothing to do with you. If a person rejects us and absolutely refuses to have anything to do with us, we can’t force that person to change. But we can (and should) do everything we can to keep the door open to a possible reconciliation. We should not strike back or condemn; instead we should let them know that we still care and that we hope someday their attitude will change. We should also pray. We can’t change the person, but God can. Even when the door seems firmly closed. God is still able to open it. Do all that you can to restore that broken relationship- and trust God for the outcome. Have a blessed day.

2019-02-08

Be of good cheer

You will have tribulations; but be of good cheer I have overcome the world (jhn16:33). When trials hits (if not now, they will), we sometimes wonder if God really knows what is happening to us. We may even question Him? “Why is this happening? What did I do wrong? God, why aren’t you answering me?” But this is wrong of us, God is far higher than we are. As God reminded Job, “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?(job38:4). Such complaining shows our lack of faith (we are doubting God’s wisdom and His love for us). Christ tells us, “In this world you WILL have tribulations.” He didn’t say that you could have tribulations or that if your a good person you won’t have tribulations. Jesus flatly stated that you will have tribulations. It is as certain as growing older. But be encouraged of the wonderful promise Christ has given us, that even thought we will have trial and tribulations, “Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” Have a blessed day.

2019-02-07

Acts of kindness

The Lords servant must not be quarrelsome but kindly to everyone (2tim2:24). Jesus was a gentle and compassionate person. When He came into the world, there was little in the way of a hospital, few shelters for the poor and fewer homes for orphans. There were no hospitals for the mentally ill. In comparison to today standards, it was a cruel in which to live. But Christ changed all of that. He healed the sick, fed the hungry and opened the eyes of the spiritually blind. He told His disciples, “Love your neighbor as yourself”(mt19:19) And He taught them to observe what we have come to call the golden rule: “In everything do to others what you would have them do to you”(mt7:12). Whenever true Christianity has gone Jesus’ followers have performed acts of kindness, love and gentleness. So the question has to be asked; “Do others see Christ’s gentleness and compassion in you?” Have a blessed day.

2019-02-06

Keeping our eyes on Heaven

I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far (phil1:23). The story is told of a women I know who’s body was troubled for years by breathing problems. It took its toll on her emotionally as well as physically. She began to pray that God would take her to Heaven. She ask her pastor concerning her prayers “is it wrong or sinful to pray in this manner?” His answer was this: First, it is not a sin to long for Heaven. If we know Jesus, we know that in Heaven all our burdens and pain will be lifted forever. The apostle Paul stated,”better by far” to be in Heaven with Jesus than to be suffering on this sin filled Earth. But at the same time, God has a purpose in keeping us here until He finally takes us home. He has things to teach us about Himself and He can still use us to bless others. Only eternity will we see the powerful way God used our prayers and the witness of us who no longer could do the thing we once did, but still trusted God to use us. So, keep your eyes on Heaven- but also seek Christ’s will for you right now know matter what you are facing! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-05

A house built on the Rock

The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliver (2sam22:2). There is a children song, that use to be sung in children church: “The wise man built his house upon the rock.” A wise man indeed does build his house upon the Rock (the Lord Jesus Christ and His Word) for nothing built of or on any other substance will stand the test of time. In America we are always tearing down old buildings in the name of progress. But in Europe, there buildings are centuries old (always trying to preserve history). Neither the US or Europe can preserve these buildings, because either time or man will destroy them. Only what is built on the solid foundation of Christ will last. Jesus tells us, “Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on a rock”(mt7:24). So the question has to be asked’ “Is your house (life) build on the solid foundation of Christ or something else?” Have a blessed day.

2019-02-04

Things God cannot do...

Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power...Nothing is too hard for you (jer32:17). Are there things God cannot do? Yes, there are some things God can and will not do. God cannot lie or go back on His promises. God cannot do something evil or have a impure thought. Why, you might ask? Because, God cannot do anything that is contrary to His character. God is not some vague force like gravity or electricity. God is a person- He is holy and perfect in His character. The Bible’s focus is on what God can do. Not only is God perfect, but He is absolutely sovereign (supreme ruler) and all powerful. It is for this reason that Jeremiah wrote- Nothing is too hard for Him. If He could bring Christ back from the dead- don’t you think He can help us overcome the trials of life that we face each and every day? Put your burden into His hards because He loves you and Nothing is to hard for Him! Have a blessed day.

2019-02-02

Are you ready?

Be very careful to...serve him with all your heart and all your soul (josh22:5). What comes to mind when you think of the phrase “serving God?” Maybe a missionary or pastor, maybe someone who has had seminary training, or someone who lives a holy life or maybe you think it’s only for the young and healthy or maybe someone who has more experience. But the reality is it doesn’t matter who or what if you are a Christian God wants to use us right where we are. Everyday we come in contact with people who will never enter a church, or talk to a pastor or even open a Bible. So, God want to use us to point them to Christ, and we might be just the bridge that God uses. Be alert for our opportunities to share the good news of Christ’s love with others- maybe even today! Please never underestimate what God can do through even our smallest efforts to reach others in the name of Christ. Are you ready to be used, I sure hope so... Have a blessed day.

2019-02-01

God’s point of view

Lift up your heads, because your redemption draw near (lk21:28). If you have ever flown in an airplane you know that your perspective of the Earth is very different from what it was when you are on the ground. Even pictures of the Earth are very different when taken from space. This is the type of perspective God wants to give us concerning our lives. When we look to God instead of ourselves and our circumstances, our perspective changes. Please don’t let the trials of life bog you down. In the midst of our trials, we only see our immediate problems and burdens, but our God sees the whole picture. He not only sees our present, but He sees our future too. His desire is to lift us above ourselves. He wants us to see everything in light of His plans. “The Lord will perfect that which concerns me”(psm138:8). Don’t get weighed down. Keep your eyes on God for He sees our whole picture and knows what is best for us. You can trust Him because He loves us. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-31

How can a young man keep his way? By living according to your word (psm119:9). Young men are not the only ones who have trouble living a pure life. We all do. We are called to be holy in mind, body and spirit (1pt1:15), which by the way isn’t easy, but can be done. T.V. and entertainment bombard us constantly with sexual themes and images that are difficult to avoid. Greed, putting self first, and power seem to be driving our culture. If we are to be pure and holy, we must firstly commit ourselves (mind, body and soul) completely to Christ. We can’t hold any areas of our lives from Him. Secondly, we must avoid situations that encourage impure thoughts or actions. Thirdly, we must fill our mind and heart with Christ by feeding our souls on a daily diet of prayer and God’s Word. And with God’s help, we can keep our way pure by living according to His Word. I hope this is your goal? Have a blessed day.

2019-01-30

Believe in your heart

If you confess with your mouth,”Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”(rms10:9). Have you ever said or heard someone else say,”I’ve asked Christ to come in my life dozen of times, but He hasn’t. Does God hate me?” The Bible is very clear: God does not hate you, God loves you, and He wants to be part of your life even more than you want Him to. From Genesis to Revelation the Bible proclaims this simple truth: God loves you! If you have confessed your sin and acknowledge that Jesus is your Lord, who died on the cross for you and rose again to give you eternal life, then God has promised to forgive you and save you. God does not lie. Salvation is God’s gift to you-a gift paid for by Christ’s sacrifice of Himself for you. You may not feel any different, but you will be different because Christ now lives within you. Don’t go by your feeling, but by the fact of God’s promise to you. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-29

He who trusts

He who trust in his riches will fall, But the righteous will flourish like foliage (prov11:28). The story goes that a certain rich man died and the question was asked at his funeral, “How much did he leave?” And of course the answer was, “He left it all.” In America we often hear someone introduce themselves like, “This is Sally and she works for... or her degree is in...” as if where a person works or what type of degree determines his or her value. But the truth of the matter is that God doesn’t judge us by our success. He loves each of us the same our value does not come from what we do, the clothes we wear, the homes we live in or the cars we drive. Our value comes from the fact that God made us, He loves us and most importantly that Christ died for us. We are adopted into His family the moment we excepted Christ. Please don’t depend on your possessions or position for your value. Get your identity christ, for you are of infinitely worth to Him! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-28

Your Word is settled in Heaven

Forever, O Lord, Your Word is settled in Heaven (psm119:89). As we look at the world with our Bible in hand, we know that we do not worship an absentee God. He stands in the shadow of history, still working to bring His plans to completion. Please do not be disturbed by the pictures of chaos, violence, bloodshed and wars that fill our t.v’s, newspapers and internet. We know these things happen as a result of humanities evil and sin, caused by our rebelling against God. Every headline confirms what the prophet Jeremiah says,”The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?(jer17:9). Let us never forget: Our God will speak history’s final word. Every day, our world moves closer to the time of Christ’s return. Satan will be our defeated foe and God’s perfect plan will be fulfilled. So no matter how foreboding the future, we who are called His children, we know the end of the story-and it is wonderfully glorious. Don’t loose heart, the best is yet to come! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-27

Parenting God’s way...

So (Joseph) got up and took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel... and went and lived in a town called Nazareth (mt2:21,23). We find it significant that God placed the young Jesus in a family. God knew that Mary and Joseph would love and guide Jesus. Allowing Jesus to grow in “wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men”(lk2:52). This should be happening in our own families. Parents are given the privilege and responsibility to teach our children about God, so that they become wise in His ways. But sadly we often fall short of God’s design. Instead of teaching them about Christ, we teach them the ways of our culture and not the glories of what Christ can do. When this happens our children may grow angry and bitter, maybe even lashing out at their parents for the hurt that was caused. Maybe you are one of those who lashes out to your parents- I know I was... But I allowed God to heal me of the anger and bitterness I held for the failures of my parents. And you can too. Ask God to show you how to be a godly parent or grandparent. Allowing God to release the bonds that have held you captive. Don’t wait another day! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-26

Returning home

The way of the Lord is strength for the upright (prov10:29). Because God is the giver and source of life, He has a legitimate claim on our lives. He is our Heavenly Father, and He has a right to expect us to be His loyal and loving children. And because we are His children, He also longs to have fellowship with us. The story of the prodigal son (lk15:11-32) is a revelation of God’s desire for our fellowship. He yearns over His children who have wandered far from Him and He longs for them to come home and be near to Him. All through the Bible, we see God’s patience and perseverance as He pursues those who have strayed. From Genesis to Revelation God is constantly saying, “Return to Me.” So no matter how far we have strayed, God still loves us and wants to welcome us home- forever. Will you return to Him? Have a blessed day.

2019-01-24

Return to Me...

The way of the Lord is strength for the upright (prov10:29). Because God is the giver and source of life, He has a legitimate claim on our lives. He is our Heavenly Father, and He has a right to expect us to be His loyal and loving children. And because we are His children, He also longs to have fellowship with us. The story of the prodigal son (lk15:11-32) is a revelation of God’s desire for our fellowship. He yearns over His children who have wandered far from Him and He longs for them to come home and be near to Him. All through the Bible, we see God’s patience and perseverance as He pursues those who have strayed. From Genesis to Revelation God is constantly saying, “Return to Me.” So no matter how far we have strayed, God still loves us and wants to welcome us home- forever. Will you return to Him? Have a blessed day.

2019-01-23

Worries...

From everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him (psm103:17). Most of us are pretty good at worrying (some of us might even be better than others). When we begin to worry it is helpful to counter our worries with the Bible’s promises about God’s steadfast love. God loves us, and no matter what happens He will never abandon us. But does this mean that things will never go wrong or that we will never have any problems? Heaven’s no! But it does mean that nothing we experience will catch God by surprise or is too big for Him to handle. Even when our days seem at there darkest God will never leave us, nor does He allow anything to come our way that can overwhelm us. We should make it a practice to thank God everyday for the many blessings we have. Our worries flee before a spirit of gratitude. So, when problems come (and they will) commit them to God. Allow God to work a mighty work in you even among all of your worries and fears! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-22

Commitment

Perfect love cast out fear (1jhn4:18). When we understand something of Christ’s love for us we as sinners, we will respond with love for Christ- which will include feelings and emotions. But we have to be careful with our emotions because they come and go, so we must not allow them to mislead us. God loves us, whether we feel it or not. So, what makes the difference? It can be summed up in one word: commitment- feelings come and go, but commitment stays. We who have committed our lives to Christ may feel joy, gratitude, love and so on. But even when we don’t have those feelings, our commitment keeps us true to Christ. Our commitment keeps us faithful to Christ when we don’t feel like it, but it also keeps away negative emotions like doubts and fears. “It is only the fear of God that can deliver us from the fear of man”(J.Witherspoon). Whom do you fear? Have a blessed day.

2019-01-21

Directions

Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely (rev22:17). The story is told of a driver who stopped to get directions to a certain street. When told, he asked doubtfully, “Is that the best way?” The man replied, “That’s the only way.” There is only one way of salvation-and that is through Christ. Jesus himself tell us,”No one comes to the Father except through Me”(jhn14:6). The Apostle Peter says,”There is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved”(acts4:12). Do we think this is arrogance or intolerance? No- and as Christians we must never be guilty of those attitudes. We are saved by the grace of God, which we don’t deserve. Christ was God’s appointed means of salvation. Only Christ died for our sins; and only Christ rose from the dead. Only Christ can offer forgiveness and the promise of a new life. Has Christ given you the forgiveness of your sins? He can if you let Him. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-20

The Narrow Road

Small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it (mt7:14). In July 1969, American astronauts astonished the world with their spectacular success of landing on the moon. They steered the Apollo 11 along a very narrow trajectory through space. NO deviation was allowed, and only slight corrections were made as they approached its destination. No suppose NASA received from the spacecraft that they were off course, and replied back to the spacecraft, “Oh, that’s all right, just keep going you’ll get there. There are a number of roads- just pick one.” It is said that people today don’t like the word “narrow” but Jesus is very clear when He says that there are only two road in the future of all men: the path to Hell and destruction (which is broad), and the other is Heaven (which is only through Christ). I am not sure which road you are on, but I can only hope that the encouragement sent to you each are pointing you to the direction of Heaven. Do you need a course correction, if so please choose the narrow road. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-19

Which road are you on?

There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death (pro16;25). For some, you may be walking on a path that isn’t God’s best for you. Going in a direction that isn’t right,but struggling to find the courage to do so. Maybe it’s time to end a unhealthy relationship, or stop a bad habit, maybe it’s time to leave behind a life that always seems to put God second? Whatever the situation might be, know that there is no short cut or easy way out. Make the right decision (firmly and decisively) sticking to it with God’s help. Find support in family and friends that will pray for you and hold you to your decisions. Start today building or rebuilding your life on the foundation of Christ and His will for you. He loves you, and knows what’s best for you. Please don’t be satisfied with anything less than His will for you- because His will is always best! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-18

Comfort and pain

The Lord has comforted his people, and will have compassion on the suffering ones (isa49:13). Comfort and prosperity have never enriched the world (or our lives) as much as adversity. Out of pain and problems have come the sweetest songs, the most poignant poems, the most gripping stories, the most inspiring lives. But it is hard to think about this when we are overwhelmed or uncertainty and fear grip our hearts. Our problems are real and it is difficult in the heat of the moment to think of nothing else. Our family had the privilege of camping in the Swiss Alps one summer. We took a ride down from the top of the mountain in a cable car. Looking down the valley we saw a carpet of wildflowers, some of the most beautiful in the world. But only a few months earlier, those plants were covered under snow. Yet the snow prepared the way for their growth-providing them with water and insulation from the winter winds. Our burdens can be like that snow preparing the way for something beautiful once our winter is past. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-17

The city that is to come

We are looking for the city that is to come (heb13:14). The Apostle Paul looked forward to death with great anticipation (most of us can’t say that). He told us,”For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain”(phil1:21). Death for Him was not a enemy to be feared, but a reality to be welcomed in God’s timing. For the Apostle Paul, death was the joyous gateway to new life- the life set aside for us in Heaven. Without the death and resurrection of Christ, we who are called His children could have no hope for the future. But the Bible promises that someday (maybe soon) we will stand face-to-face with the resurrected Christ. All of our questions will be answered, and all of our sorrows and fears will vanish. What a wonderful promise Christ has placed before us! My hope and prayers are that you will know this promise too! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-16

Rejoice in our suffering

We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope (rms5:3-4). Can God take anything that has happened to us (even the bad things) and use them to make us into a better, more Christlike person? He can if we let Him. This doesn’t mean God necessarily causes everything that happens to us; for instance, bad things do happen to us when we make bad decisions- when this is the case, we can’t blame God. Sometimes we don’t know why God allows bad things to happen to us. Even then however, God can use them to teach us and make us into better person. Disappointments and tragedies, for example can teach us to turn in trust to God for the hope and comfort we need. These times can also teach us patience and make us more sensitive to others who are suffering. Are you facing a difficult time? Ask God to use it to increase your faith and make you more like Christ. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-15

No greater love

Greater love has no one then this, that he lay down his life for his friends (jn15:13). Have you ever been accused of being a hypocrite because you didn’t show Christian love to someone? Not every accusation like this is justified, sometimes the accuser is just being selfish, demanding and unrealistic. We aren’t being a hypocritical just because we didn’t meet that persons every demand. Would we really be helping them if we met their every demand, no matter how selfish? We might just be encouraging greater self-centeredness. Sometimes love say no because that is what is best for them. If you could fulfill someone’s request, however, do so even if it involves sacrifice on our part. The Bible tells us,”Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth”(1jn3:18). This is the kind of love God showed us when He sent His Son to us to die for our sins. I pray we are always a example of Christ’s love and He grant us wisdom to know what will mean in every situation. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-13

Battle Time!

I will never leave you nor forsake you (heb13:5). Never doubt that we are in the midst of a battle-a spiritual battle with Satan, who will do anything to discourage and defeat us. Never underestimate his determination or misunderstand his intentions. God wants to teach us how to defend ourselves against sin and Satan. God offers us spiritual training to build us up on the inside, in the same way physical exercise builds us up on the outside. God has given us the resources we need to defend ourselves, they include the Bible, prayer, faith, righteous living and the Holy Spirit in us. But, like physical training we must be diligent in their application. God has not promised to shield us from trouble, but He has promised to protect us in the midst of trouble. Most of all, never forget that because of Christ’s death on the cross, Satan is a defeated foe-and someday our war will be over-wether it be at Christ’s return or when we are call home, but until that day stand strong knowing that God does have our backs! Have a blessed day.

2019-01-12

Imitators of God

Be imitators of God as dear children (eph5:1). There is a story that has been told of a man who glanced at the obituary in his local news paper. To his surprise he saw his name telling that he had died. At first he laugh, but soon the text messages and phone calls started. Shocked friends and acquaintances offering their condolences. Finally, in irritation, he called the new paper editor, telling them that he in fact was alive and well. The editor apologized and in a flash of inspiration said, “Don’t worry sir, I’ll fix it tomorrow- I’ll put your name in the births column.” This story may sound cute, but it does have some spiritual application. It’s not until our old selves is nailed to the cross and dies, can our new selves can be born again and begin to grow into the likeness of Christ. The Bible tells us; “You He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sin.. Therefore be imitators of God as dear children (eph2:1,5:1). Have a blessed day.

2019-01-10

Yearn of Heaven

(God) has also set eternity in the hearts of men (eccl3:11). How do we know that Heaven exists, that it’s not just a myth or our imagination? Heaven exists because God has put the hope of Heaven in our hearts. This hope is almost universal and it is part of every religion. The Bible tells us that this hope comes from God: He wants us to know that death is not the end and that we are meant to live forever with Him. Like our verse tells us, God placed within us the yearning for Heaven. But the main and most important reason Heaven exists, is the death and resurrection of Jesus. On the cross at His death, He erased the only thing that can(and does) keep us out of Heaven: our sin. On His resurrection Christ guaranteed that there is life after death and that Heaven is real. Our simple prayer of faith this give us a place in Heaven. Jesus said, “I am going there to prepare a place for you”(jhn14:2). Have a blessed day.

2019-01-09

Truth

You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free (jn8:32). Many people today believe that there is no such thing as absolute truth. It’s taught in our school system under the gies of critical thinking: what might be your truth isn’t necessarily my truth. But Christ is absolute truth. There are dozens of times He declares, “ I tell you the TRUTH.” One of His boldest and most uncompromising statements, He affirms,”I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life”(jn14:6). The apostle John also tells us that,”Grace and TRUTH came through Jesus(jn1:17). The Bible also tells us that God, “chose to give birth through the Word of TRUTH “(jms1:18). So please don’t be misled by those who are morally and spiritually living in this age of relativity, who follow only what appeals to them. God has revealed His truth to us, it can be found only in the Bible and in His Son Jesus. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-08

Peacemakers

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God (mt5:9). To have peace with God and to have the peace of God in our hearts should not be enough. We should desire more from this vertical relationship, we must have a horizontal outworking, or our faith is in vain. Jesus said we are to love the Lord with all our hearts and to love our neighbors as ourselves. This dual love for God and others is like the positive and negative poles on a battery: unless both pole are connected- we have no power. Our personal faith is normally useless unless it has a social application to it. If we have peace with God and the peace of God, we will become peacemakers. We will not only strive to be at peace with our neighbors, but we will be leading them to discover the true source our peace in Christ. Do others see the peace of Christ overflowing in our lives? Have a blessed day.

2019-01-07

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly (col3:16). Living in the south, we know a thing or two about weeds. Weeds with roots so long that you think you’ll never get rid of them. You know our thoughts can be like roots- so deep that you think you can’t get rid of them. Thoughts that have been with us so long that they are a part of us... But when we come to know Christ, He begins to change our thinking and new thoughts begin to take root-thoughts of God’s love for us and His will for our life. But our old thought still remain and sometimes they suddenly spring up (like those weeds) to the surface. When they do Satan will try to use them against us- making us think that we have failed God because of our old thoughts have sprung to the surface. We should be surprised when our old thoughts crop up- we must not linger on them. When they do come (and they will), immediately turn to God and ask for help. When our mind are on Christ, Satan has little room to maneuver. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-04

Riches or righteousness?

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness(mt5:6). God is the only true source of happiness, because He alone offers the intangibles that we mistakenly believe can be found in life: contentment, security, peace and hope for the future. None of these things can be found in our jobs, in a relationship, money, or even social position. They are God’s alone to give. For the unbeliever it is difficult to understand, but the Bible tells us: our spiritual eyes are blinded, not able to see God’s truth until the Holy Spirit opens them. But spiritual dullness can happen to the believer, when they fall into the patterns of the world, as they vainly pursue happiness in the same way the world does. It is for this reason that Jesus in His sermon on the mont, tells us where our ultimate happiness can be found:”Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled”(mt5:6). This is our promise. Which is your goal? Riches or righteousness? Have a blessed day.

2019-01-03

Lip service

These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me (isa29:13). Do we serve God with our lips? You know, profess God, we do the right things, go to church, do the moral things we were suppose to do, but deep in our hearts we are not totally surrendered to Christ? In Joshua’s day, the Jews were outwardly following God, but inwardly they were not. Joshua told them that their hypocrisy could not continue. The Jewish people were to decide whether they wanted to serve the true living God or to serve their idols. Regardless of the people’s choice Joshua declared, “As for me and my household- we will serve the Lord”(josh24:15). So we, like the Jews are presented with the same choice- whom will we serve? Will we set aside everything false and wholeheartedly turn to Christ? I hope so, but for me like Joshua- I will serve the Living God! I pray you do too... Have a blessed day.

2019-01-02

His compassion fail not

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassion fail not (lam3:22). Some people may think of God as an old man with a long white beard. After all isn’t that how some artist have depicted Him? Maybe, even we have thought of Him as somewhat feeble and harmless, not quite in touch with us and our struggles. But the Bible doesn’t describe Him in the same way as some think... God is a spirit, He does not have a body, He is not confined to one place. God also has attributes of a person: He thinks, He speaks, He loves, He gets angry, and He grieves. Because God is a person, He feels what we feel. Remember that no matter what we face God does understand. God even understands our temptations, for Christ,”has been tempted in every way, just as we are- yet was without sin” (heb4:15). So this is why we can bring anything-everything- to Him in prayer, with confidence that He will understand our trial and struggles. Have a blessed day.

2019-01-01

New Year’s resolutions

Consider your ways (hag1:5). Making New Years resolutions and not keeping them is something that we have all done. We start out with good intentions but for one reason or another we don’t keep them. Let me suggest a couple of reasons to make and keep this New Years resolution. In making a new year resolution, it first forces us to reflect on our lives and over the passing year (to be honest about our failures and our need to change). Secondly, making a list of resolutions can turn our focus to God. If we are to be honest to ourselves, we know that we all fall short of what God has called us to be and it is for this reason that we need God. This brings us to the realization that we cannot live the way we need to without His strength. In other words no matter what New Years resolution you have- you need God’s help. So begin this year’s resolution by wanting to grow closer to Christ, open your heart staring today. Have a blessed day and Happy New Year!

2018-12-31

The end of another year

There shall be no night there...And they shall reign forever and ever (rev22:5). You may have been asked this question, “Are you an pessimist or an optimist?” As a Christian we are an optimist (why you might wonder?)- because we have read the end of the Bible (we win!). The Bible tells us of our Heavenly city, who’s builder and maker is God, where those who have been redeemed will be superior to the angles. It speaks of “a pure river of water of life, clear as crystals, proceeding from the throne of God and the Lamb”(rev22:1). There shall be no more night there: They need no lamps or no light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever. As we end another year, no doubt you have faced some tremendous heartaches and pain and some wonderful joys and hope. But my hope and prayer for you is that you are not bound by this ending year, but are looking forward to the coming year with Heaven in mind. So, remember God’s promise, “be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming in near”(jms5:8). Have a blessed day and Happy New Year!

2018-12-30

Gospel of crisis

For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decisions (joel3:14). Some say that Christianity is a gospel of crisis. It is however the gospel of good news. The news that God loves us and has a plan for our lives. He is a God of mercy, and He will lead and bless those who trust Christ as their Savior. But to the unbelieving world, they see Christianity differently- they see Christianity as a gospel of crisis, because it boldly proclaims that this world will end, and that our days are limited (mortality is 100%). The Bible tells us that life is only a vapor that appears for a moment and then vanishes (jms4:14). It is true that one day this world will come to an end,(it may be tomorrow or a thousand years) that evil will no longer dominate this world. Jesus will return and set up His Kingdom of righteousness. The hatred, greed, jealousy, wars and death that has plagued humanity will no longer exist. The world is not ready for that day. Are we ready for that day? Will you join in praying,”Come quickly Lord Jesus! Have a blessed day.

2018-12-29

Armor of light

Put on the armor of light (rms13:12). I have heard about an old sundial with an inscription: “It is later than you think.” It has been said that travelers would often stop and meditate on the meaning of its phrase. The author must have wanted to remind those who read its phrase of the shortness and uncertainty of life. And for me this has never been more relevant then the loss of our only daughter in January this year. The Bible tells us from Genesis to Revelation that, “It is later than you think.” There is no better time than now to share the the love of Christ. The Bible also tells us,”It is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. The night is almost gone, and the day is at hand. Let us therefore lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light”(rms13:11-12). It’s later than you think. Learn to live each day as if it were your last- for someday it will be. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-28

Heaven’s grandstand

Since we are surrounded by so great do a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight(heb12:1). If the angels rejoice over one sinner who repents (lk15:10), then the angelic host are numbered among the spectators in the Heavenly grandstands. They are included among those who are referred to as “so great a cloud of witnesses”;and they never miss any details of our Earthly pilgrimages. Neither does our God overlook what goes on here. The Bible tells us, “All thing are ...open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account”(heb4:13). There is a story told of an old preacher who worked into the night on his sermon for his small congregation. His wife asked him why he spent so much time on a message that would be heard by so few. His reply,”You have forgot, my dear, how large my audience there will be! Remember: Nothing is trivial here if Heaven looks on. So the next time someone is in need or life throws us a trial, we would do good to to remembering who is watching in our grandstands. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-27

Wisdom and knowledge

Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God(rms11:33). The story has been told that the mystery of lightning is what caused Benjamin Franklin to tie a key to the tail of a kite during a storm to prove there is a relationship between lightning and electricity. We have always tried to understand the world around us (with its many mysteries); and this is what separates us from the animals. Some of the great mysteries of the past have been figured out, while others still puzzle us. But this fact remains: all of the gained wisdom of the past are just a scratch on the surface of humanity’s search for knowledge. Our inability to understand the mysteries of God’s creation should not cast doubts on our Christian faith, if anything it should enhance our belief. We may never understand all around us- but we know that He who created them does. So the next time you gaze out on a starry night, or hear the roar of the ocean, or wonder in the eyes of a newborn remember these words: “The heavens declare the glory of God” (psm19:1). Have a blessed day.

2018-12-26

A clean slate

Create in me a clean heart, O Lord, And renew a steadfast spirit within me (Pam 51:10). Have you ever had to erase a white board or maybe even a chalkboard? When the surface was wiped clean- it was as if nothing had ever been there. Well, this is what God does for us when we come to Him, confessing our sins, and trusting His Son as our Savior and Lord. The Bible tells us,”If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness’(1jn1:9). Remember what He promises to do: forgive and to cleanse. Our slate is wiped clean. This is something that only God can and will do, we cannot do this ourselves. I wonder how how many times we have wished we could have a “Do over?” We can start right now by allowing God to wipe our slates clean by confessing our sins and by letting Him give us a brand-new start today? What’s holding us back? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-25

No room

She brought forth her firstborn Son... and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the Inn (lk2:7). No room for Jesus? No room for the King of kings? But it is sad to say... we have room for others and other things. Is there any room for Jesus in this world for which He made? Things haven’t changed much since that first night in Bethlehem. God is still on the fringe of most people’s lives. Most of us fit Him in when it is convenient for us, and we become irritated when He makes demands on us. If God would only stay in His box and only come out when we pull the strings. Our lives are busy and full-this we know. But there is so much to be done-jobs, bills, kids, spouses all pull us in different directions. But in all of our business, we are in danger of excluding from our hearts and our lives the One who made us. May this be our prayer this Christmas and every day: “Oh, come to my heart Lord Jesus; there is room in my heart for You.” Merry Christmas and have a blessed day.

2018-12-24

A Savior is born

Today in the town of David, a Savior is born to you; He is Christ the Lord (lk2:11). Jesus came into this world to save all kinds of people (rich and poor, black and white, educated and illiterate, sophisticated and ordinary). But only two groups of people gathered at God’s invitation to pay homage when Christ was born. The first group were the shepherds- lowly, at the bottom of the social ladder(no education and unsophisticated). The second group was the wise men- intellectuals, from a different race and country (wealthy and respected ). God lead both groups to Bethlehem- one by angelic announcement, the other by the appearance of a star. By bringing both groups, God was showing us that Jesus is the Savior for all. We stand in need of forgiveness. No matter who you are, you need Christ. And no matter what you have done, Christ loves you and stands ready to welcome you, will you welcome Him this holiday season? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-22

Bread of Life

I am the bread of life (jn6:35). Jesus came to the world so that we could know that God is concerned about the way we live, the way we believe and the way we die. Jesus is our Living Word. By His life, death and resurrection, He demonstrated God’s love for us. The Bible tells us,”God demonstrated His own love toward us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us”(rms5:8). Each time Christ fed the hungry, He was saying,”I am the bread of life.” Each time He healed the suffering, He was saying “It hurts Me to see you in pain.” Each move He made, every miracle He performed, every word He spoke was for the purpose of reconciling a lost world to the living compassionate God. So, as the holiday approach, can the lost see Christ’s examples in us? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-21

Light of the World

I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness (jn8:12). In just a few days we will celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. It will be celebrated in various ways, in many languages and many different cultures. And on that day, for a few hours the world will stop talking of politics, wars and disasters. For a few hours we will talk of peace on Earth and good will toward men. We will exchange gifts and spend time with our loved ones, maybe remembering our Christmas from the past and talk about the Prince of Peace. Talk about the birth of Christ and how His birth was like no other, how it became the greatest, most significant night in history. How that first Christmas night when the light would conquer darkness and bring in the day when there will be no more night. This was the night when God brought into the world the One who is “the light of the world.” May our lives reflect the One who is the “light of the world” as we celebrate this Christmas season. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-20

A babe like no other

God also has...given Him the name which is above every name (phil2:9). On a night that we now call Christmas, some two thousand years ago, a young Jewish maiden did what countless before and after her have done; she gave birth. But her child was not like any other child born before or after, in all of history. Her child didn’t have a human father. The Bible tells us, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Highest will overshadow you”(lk1:35). The birth of her child was like no other because of the One who was born. He was no ordinary child. He was the unique Son of God, sent from Heaven to save us from our sins. So as the glitter and busyness of the fast approaching holidays descend upon us, please don’t lose sight of the miracle of that first Christmas. Let us be able to say along with the wise men, let us fall down and worship Him(mt2:11). Have a blessed day.

2018-12-19

Finding the balance

The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God (1cor3:19). Some may say that the way for the Church to make our world a better place is to be more like it. But when the Church does, it ends up compromising its spiritual authority and losing its influences. Instead of changing the world, the world changes the Church. God doesn’t want us to isolate ourselves, Jesus prayed for His disciples,”As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world”(jn17:18). We are not to isolate ourselves from the lost, for when we do we have no impact and demonstrate our lack of love for them. But God does not want us to become like the unbelieving world either. So we are to find that balance between the two. We are to be separate, refusing to adapt it motives, attitudes and behaviors of this world, while loving the lost. The Bible tells us, “All that is in the world- the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life-is not of the Father, but of the world”(1jn2:16). Let Christ fill ours lives so much that there will not be any room for the world. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-18

Worries and anxieties

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you(jn14:27). It has been said, “Worry is like sitting in a rocking chair. It will give you something to do, but it won’t get you anywhere.” Our worries and anxieties don’t seem to get any easier the closer the holidays get. In our passage Christ tells us that He leaves us peace, that He gives us peace. But when someone gives us something, it is not ours until we receive it. So what do we do, what is our answer? Imagine with me, a fierce storm beating against a rocky shore. Lightning and thunder, and waves crashing. Now imagine that you see in a crevice in the rocky cliff-inside is a small bird, curled up with its head tucked, fast asleep. The little bird knows the rock will protect it, and so it sleeps. The Bible tells us that God promised Moses, “I will put you in the cleft of the rock, and will cover you with My hand”(ex33:22). This is God’s promise to us too. Christ is our Rock, and we are secure in His hands. Are you receiving the peace that only can come from our Rock this holiday season, you know you still can there is still time! Have a blessed day.

2018-12-17

What is right and what is wrong

Everyone did what was right in his own eyes (judges21:25). Do we live any differently in today’s society, from those reflected in today’s verse? Sadly, I do not think so... so many today think and are taught that the moral standards of yesterday are useless and out of date; that we should be free to make our own minds up about what is right and what is wrong. But I wonder if we have honestly faced the logical result of this belief. What we are really saying is that there is no such thing as right and wrong, and because of this it gives us the freedom to decide how we want to behave (no accountability). But the moral standards that God has given us are ALWAYS best- best for us and best for society. The reason is because God created us, He loves us and He knows what is best for us. Please don’t be misled by those who deny God’s moral standards. Choose God’s standards not those of today’s society. His ways are always best. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-16

Heaven in view

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed (2cor4:8). It has been said that those who keep Heaven in view remain serene and cheerful in the darkest of days. If the glories of Heaven were more real to us, we would be less easily disturbed by this present life. Is this a form of escapism? Some might argue so, but if anything a firm faith in the future should make us more responsible in the present. All around us are people we know who never give a moments thought to Heaven or eternity. I would venture so say the real escapism are those who refuse to face the future that God has prepared for us. In these days of darkness and upheaval and uncertainty- the trusting and forward-looking Christian remains optimistic and joyful (not to be confused with happiness), knowing that Christ will rule and reign, and that “if we endure, we shall also reign with Him”(2tim2:12). Are you looking to the future or escapism? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-15

He is praying for you

(Jesus)is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them (heb7:25). Sometimes life hands us trials that we would never ask for, ones that we would never wish on our worst enemies. Trials that are so great that we see no hope for our future. If you are facing one of these life changing trials- let me assure you, that you are not alone and that God cares for you (even when all you can see is the circumstance) and because of Him your future can be different. When we commit our lives to Christ, it doesn’t mean all of our problems will go away. But I will have to say that facing the trials and troubles that life throws at us a better with Christ- than facing them without Him. God loves us and even when life is dark and uncertain and this truth should bring us encouragement and strength. Christ knows what you are going through, and like our verse says- He is praying for us. Commit your problems and future to Him, He will guide you through with peace and assurance like no other. Be encouraged today, our Jesus is praying for us! Have a blessed day.

2018-12-14

Clothed in righteousness

He made Him...to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him(2cor5:21). When we come to Christ, the Bible tells us that He imparts His righteousness to us. Once we were sinners in God’s eyes; but now He sees us as righteous because of Christ. But how is this possible? In ourselves we aren’t righteous. The Bible explains that, “There is none righteous, no, not one”(rms3:10). But when we accept Christ as our Savior, the filthy rags of our sins are replaced by the glorious robe of Christ’s righteousness. Our signs were transferred to Him- and His righteousness was transferred to us. We didn’t deserve it. We did not earn it. It is all because of grace- all because of God un-deserved favor toward us in Christ. We can never win God’s favor by our deeds, no matter how good we are. Only Christ can save us. Thank God that we can stand before Him clothed in the perfect righteousness of Christ. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-13

Who are you going to trust?

Blessed is the man who make the Lord his trust(psm40:4). The story has been told of a little boy who was given a dollar. He gave his dollar to his dad saying,”Daddy, keep this for me.” But just a few minutes later he came back and said “Daddy, I’d better keep my own dollar.” The little boy tucked his dollar in his pocket and went out to play. But after a few minutes the little boy came back in with tear in his eyes saying,”Daddy, I have lost my dollar. Help me find it.” How often do we commit our burdens to the Lord, only to turn around and take them back, thinking that we can handle them ourselves? It is not until we have really messed things up do we pray-“Oh, Lord, help me! I’m in trouble!” The choice is ours. Do we want to trust our lives in God’s hands or do we keep it in our own hands? The Bible’s promise is true:”Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust.” Who are you gonna trust? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-12

Totally and absolutely forgiven

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me and I will be whiter than snow (psm51:7). Do we really believe that God cannot forgive us for something we’ve done-even a long time ago? If we do- then we are believing the lie of Satan. Satan will do/say almost anything to make us think that God hates us and will not forgive us. Satan likes to dredge up our past sins to tell us of how terrible we are. It is for this reason that the Bible calls him, “the accuser of our brethren”(rev12:10). But his accusations are false. Here is the truth: if we have honestly turned to Christ and have asked to be forgiven- then we are totally and absolutely forgiven. Jesus died for all (all means all) all people- all of our sins (past, present,and future). So please don’t believe your emotions and don’t let you memories defeat you. You are forgiven! Have a blessed day.

2018-12-11

There is a time for everything

There is a time for everything...a time to be silent and a time to speak (eccl3:1,7). When we are hurting, we value the presence of someone who will just sit with us and listen. But how many times do we, when someone is hurting try to fix their hurt, doing everything but listening? What we should be doing is listening and letting our friend share their feelings and for us to assure them that we care even when we may not have any answer. In the midst of his great sufferings, Job cried out to those who were always giving him advice,”Oh, that you would be silent’(job13:5). So the next time we encounter a friend who is hurting-do not try to fix their problem, try instead to listen (truly listen), pray for them (maybe right then and there), encourage them-encouraging them to commit their problem to God. Most people already know what it will take to get through their problem (they just need to voice it out). God can and will work in unexpected ways to bring good out of our bad. But most of all ask God how we can be an encouragement and a burden bearer to our hurting friends. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-10

Rejecting of wise council

Then the king... rejected the advise of the elders(2chrn10:13). Tragically many people today are victims of their own bad decisions. Faced with choices everyday- they turn their back on what’s right and what is best only to choose instead what is wrong/easy or what will bring them harm. King Rehoboam did just that, when he rejected the advise of his wise council- opting for only what he wanted to hear. In the end conflict broke out and his nation was divided. “Whatever a man sows he shall reap”(gal6:7). Our lives are filled with decisions. How can we make wise decisions? The most important thing we can do is seek God’s will in every decision. Walking so close to Him that if we make an incorrect decision we know it! Pray always-turn to scripture- seek advise of godly friends. Ask the Holy Spirit of God to guide you. And remember: God loves us and His ways are always-ALWAYS best. He will never steer us wrong even if the path is difficult. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-08

Burdens

Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ (gal6;2). I have to say a lot of times we don’t realize how heavy someone else’s burden is until we walk long a similar path. We become wrapped up in what’s going on in our own lives- that we overlook those around us- even the struggles of those in our own family. But this is not the way God planned things. We show our love for others by bearing one another’s burdens. It may be too late to change the past, but we can change our own awareness of others burdens starting now. Can you think of someone who has had a rough year, month, week or day? Start today by reaching out to them- ask God to show you how you can be a blessing and an encouragement to someone who is struggling. You never know how your act of encouragement can lift the spirit of the one who is carrying such a heavy load. And if you are the burden bearer ask God to send someone who will be willing to be your burden encourager. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-07

Keep watch!

Therefore keep watch because you do not know when the owner of the house will come back...(mk13:35). The question has been asked many times-“Are we living in the end times?” We have to admit the world seems to be getting worse. And I hope this reminds us that someday (maybe soon) Christ will return and bring an end to this present world. The Bible does tell us of certain signs that point to Christ’s return. He did warn us that before His return “you will hear of wars and rumors of wars...famines, pestilences and earthquakes in various of places...false prophets will rise up and deceive many”(mt24:6,7-11). Satan will certainly show his behind in one last attempt, hoping to capture as many souls as possible before he meets his end. So... is Christ returning soon? He very well could be- but the Bible warns us not to make predictions. So, we must be ready and alert for His return. We should be living as if His return is today... for it may very well be... Come quickly Christ come! Have a blessed day.

2018-12-05

From glory to glory

We...are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory (2cor3:18). It has been said that a pig can be washed up, sprinkled with the most expensive perfume, put a pretty bow on it, but the moment it get a chance- it will make a be line for the first mud puddle it sees. Being in a puddle is it’s nature, because in the end it’s still a pig. We ourselves want to change, we read the latest greatest self-help books, hoping that it will change us, but at best it’s only temporary. We need a deep transformation-(more than can be found in a self-help book), we need a transformation of the heart. The Bible tells us that when we come to Christ, we are spiritual born again. The Holy Spirit begins to change us. He changes our motives, our objectives, our disposition, and our eternal destiny. This doesn’t happen all at once, we will spend the rest of our lives learning what it means to be a follower of Christ. How far have you allowed Christ to transform you life? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-04

Heaven or Hell?

The Lord our God is righteous in everything he does (dan9:14). We know that our God is loving and merciful, and these truths make some wonder how can He send anyone to Hell. But what about the Hitlers and Stalins of the world, if anyone deserves hell its them... but if the truth be known, it is not God who send people to hell. It is those who choose to turn their backs on God, when they deny His Son Jesus, that is what reveals the their fates. Sins like murder and rape (or any type of sin) are a offense to our holy and pure God. Our loving God cannot simply ignore evil and pretend it doesn’t exist (to do so would go against His very nature). The Bible tells us: “He has set a day when he will judge the world with justice”(acts17:31). But to those of us who have named Jesus as our Savior and Lord, we have trusted Him for our eternal salvation. We know that one day all evil will be destroyed and our Christ will reign forever and ever. Where will you spend your eternity? In Heaven with your Savior or Hell with all those who have denied Christ? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-03

Sufficient Grace

My grace is sufficient for you (2cor12:9). The greatest most moving prayer ever said was prayed by Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane. In it He prayed that the cup of crucifixion might be taken away, and than in the very next breath He said, “Nevertheless, no as I will, it as You will”(mt26:39). Now, that took power and strength, something much more than you or I possess. The apostle Paul asked God to remove his “thorn in the flesh” but God did not saying only that “My Grace is sufficient for you”(2cor12:9). So what trials and troubles are you facing? Will God’s Grace be sufficient enough? Sometimes, we feel overwhelmed, but we are not, if we rely on Christ. He desires to be with us in the midst of life’s challenges and disappointments. Don’t remain in your trial alone, see if He will do as He has promised. He may not take your problem away, but He will give you the power to deal with them- He will show you how to overcome them by His grace. His grace is sufficient. Have a blessed day.

2018-12-03

The Spirit of truth

The Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me (jn15:26). God the Holy Spirit is equal with the Son and with the Father in every respect. Most will agree the doctrine of the Trinity is difficult to understand. But the Bible does teach us that the Holy Spirit is coequal with God the Father and coequal with God the Son. The Holy Spirit is a person, and He is never to be referred to as “it.” He is a mighty person. The Bible tells us the Holy Spirit is omnipotent (all powerful). He is omnipresent (everywhere at the same time). He is not an impersonal power or force(like some do), nor is He a divine influence or agent. He is given to us as a ever present comfort, reminding us of God’s love and grace as we face to trials and tribulations each day. Remember and draw comfort from the words of Jeremy Taylor (Anglican Bishop, seventeen century) “It is impossible for that man to despair who remembers that his Helper is omnipotent.” Can the same be said of us as we face life’s trial? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-02

The Spirit of truth

The Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me (jn15:26). God the Holy Spirit is equal with the Son and with the Father in every respect. Most will agree the doctrine of the Trinity is difficult to understand. But the Bible does teach us that the Holy Spirit is coequal with God the Father and coequal with God the Son. The Holy Spirit is a person, and He is never to be referred to as “it.” He is a mighty person. The Bible tells us the Holy Spirit is omnipotent (all powerful). He is omnipresent (everywhere at the same time). He is not an impersonal power or force(like some do), nor is He a divine influence or agent. He is given to us as a ever present comfort, reminding us of God’s love and grace as we face to trials and tribulations each day. Remember and draw comfort from the words of Jeremy Taylor (Anglican Bishop, seventeen century) “It is impossible for that man to despair who remembers that his Helper is omnipotent.” Can the same be said of us as we face life’s trial? Have a blessed day.

2018-12-01

Meeting the Spiritual needs of others

No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only who is at the Father’s side, has been made known (jn1:18). There are many today who are searching for more to life than the material thing they have acquired, they are looking for a deeper spiritual reality. Sadly, sometimes their search take them on paths that lead them away from the Living God. Some of us may even know of such a person(s). Please encourage them to seek our Living God. He has not left them in the dark: He has revealed Himself to us through His Word and His Son. Remember: Jesus took upon Himself human flesh and become man. So, if we truly want to know what God is like, we have to look no farther than to look at Jesus. Pray for those who are seeking Christ, that they will not be deceived or led down a path that lead away from God. Pray also, that God can and will use us to point them to Christ’s truth and love, because only He can meet their deepest hunger of their souls. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-30

No regrets

If anyone desires to come after Me, let Him...take up his cross and follow Me (mt16:24). The story has been told of Bill Borden I. In the early twentieth century turned his back on his family’s vast fortunes to become a missionary to China. Unfortunately he only made it as far as Egypt, where he died of typhoid fever. But before his death he penned, “No reserves, no retreats, no regrets!” Being a follower of Christ will always be costly. It may not cost us our lives- but it might. But it will cost us our plans, our will, our selfish desires. And it is for this reason that many choose not to follow Christ. But for those who do...there is nothing greater! There is nothing more fulfilling. Christ’s standards have not changed:”If anyone desires or come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me”(mt16:24). Someone has once said, Salvation is free, but not cheap.” It cost Christ His life, and it will cost us as well. Can we look back on our lives and say, “No reserve, no retreats, NO REGRETS? I hope we can. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-29

Heaven or Hell?

In life, where he was in torment, he looked up and...called to him, Father Abraham, have pity on me... because I am in agony in this fire (lk16:23-24). God created us with a soul/spirit that will live on forever- and when we pass from this life, we will continue to exist- either in the place the Bible calls Heaven or in the place it calls Hell. Hell, is reserved for those who have rejected God and turned their backs on Him. If you want nothing to do with Him in this life, than you will have nothing to do with Him in the next life. The Bible speaks of Hell, as a place of “darkness (where) there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (mt25:30). Hell is a place of absolute loneliness and hopelessness. But God doesn’t want us to go there, He sent Jesus to do for us what we could do on our own. He paid for our sins, when He went willingly to the cross for us. We are designed for Heaven but it is up to us where we spend eternity. You pick it! Heaven with Christ or Hell in complete darkness. Please choose Christ and Heaven. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-28

What are you living for?

What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes (jms4:14). The question has been asked,”What has been the biggest surprise of life? The question was answered, “The brevity of life.” Almost before anyone realizes it (if we are lucky enough) the years have passed and life is almost over. On one hand, life’s brevity should challenge us. If we are to live for Christ and share Him with others, it must be now (before it is too late). But life’s brevity should also comfort us. Life is short- and before us lies eternity. When our suffering overwhelms us and our difficulties assail us, we know they will be over soon. The apostle Paul reminds us,”Our light affliction which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory...For the things which are seen are temporary”(2cor4:17-18). Please don’t live as if life will continue forever (it doesn’t). But live instead with the glories of eternity in view (which does last forever). Have a blessed day.

2018-11-27

Broad is the road

No man knows when his hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net... so men are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them (eccl9:12). Has God ever tried to get your attention? Maybe a narrow escape in a car accident, or a false-positive test for cancer, or maybe the unexpected death of a loved one, leaving us to wonder if God is trying to get our attention. Perhaps, God is trying to tell you that you are on the wrong road. “Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction and many enter through it”(mtt7:13). Maybe God has been warning you that life is short; and you cannot count on having time to turn to Him later on, the time is now. But above all, God wants to tell you and show you that He loves you. He loves us so much that He gave His Son to die on the cross for us. When we know Christ, we have joy and peace, through our difficult times, because we know our future is secure- and someday maybe soon we will be with Him forever. So when troubled times come, look to God for guidance. He is there waiting for you. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-26

Whiter than snow

Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow (psm51:7). Have you ever seen fresh fallen snow, it is so white that you can see almost anything that is dropped in it, even when we are far away. We can place a freshly cleaned white shirt next to snow and the shirt will look dingy. Our lives are like that, at times we may think we are morally good and decent; we are content that we are”not like other men”(lk18:11). But compared to God’s purity, we are defiled and filthy. But in spite of our uncleanness and sins, God still loves us. And because He loves us, He has provided us with a purity which we can never attain on our own. This is why God has given us His Son Jesus, to die in our place. Only when our sins have been washed in the blood of Christ will we appear as white as snow in the eyes of God. Thank God that we are “whiter than snow” because “you (we)were washed ... in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God”(1cor6:11). Are you washed in the blood of Christ? Have a blessed day.

2018-11-25

Godly beauty

Your beauty should NOT come from outward adornments (1pt3:3). Society today bombards us with messages about what is beautiful and what is handsome (color eyes,hair, how tall, our weight, our body type). It sets our standards- sometimes without us even realizing it. It is hard to ignore this loud and ever-present voice being shouted from magazines, TV, movies, internet, and advertising. So how do we cope with all of this? First, and the most important is to ask God to help you to be content with the way He has made you, He has made you and it is wrong to think He has made a mistake. God loves you just the way you are. Second, we need to focus on what the Bible call true beauty- the beauty of godly character, “the unfading beauty gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight”(1pt3:4). Take care of your body; the Bible calls it a temple of the Holy Spirit(1cor6:19). But most of all take care of your soul by feeding on the Word of God and letting His Spirit transform you from within. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-22

Giving thanks

It is good to give thanks to the Lord(psm92:1). The Pilgrims who landed in Plymouth in 1620 knew nothing of the bountiful prosperity that so many of us enjoy today. The seeds that was brought from England, failed to grow. But they were able to catch fish, and hunted wild fowl and venison. They had little of English meal and Indian corn. Yet, their lives were marked by a spirit of constant thankfulness. It is said that on one occasion William Brewster, raising from a scanty dinner of calms and water, he gave thanks to God “for the abundance of the sea and the treasures hid in the sand.” Compared to today’s standard they had little, but they possessed a great sense of gratitude. Gratitude is one of the greatest Christian graces; ingratitude is one of the most vicious sins. I pray that God opens our eyes to all the blessings He has given us, not just on this Thanksgiving Day but everyday. Happy Thanksgiving!

2018-11-21

The hearts of men

The hearts of men, moreover are full of evil and there is madness in their hearts while they live (eccl9:3). Read or listen to any news headlines today and you will know that there is terrible things happening- wars, conflicts, corruption, terrorist attacks, and. injustice of all types... Why, you might ask? The answer is easy- because our human heart is capable of incredible evil. We may pretend otherwise, because we think we are more civilized or better educated and we are less likely to do anything evil, but that not necessarily the case. Only Christ can cleanse and change us from the moral and spiritual filth we allow to accumulate in our hearts. When we turn to God, He not only forgives us of our sins, but He comes to live within us by His Holy Spirit. God’s promise is for all who turn in faith to Christ: “I will give you a new heart”(ez36:26). Are we each day seeking help to do His will? Are we praying that He will restrain evil and hasten the coming of His Kingdom? I can only hope so... Have a blessed day.

2018-11-20

Antichrist

As you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrist have come (1jn2;18). The main characteristic of the Antichrist (who will come in the last days) is that he will be a great deceiver, who will turn many away from God. This great deceived will be sent into the world as Satan’s representative to oppose God at every turn. The Bible calls him “the man of lawlessness...(one) who will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshipped...proclaiming himself to be God” (2thes2:3-4). Some have asked,”is the Antichrist alive today?” No one can say for sure. But the Bible does tell us a very important truth: the spirit of the Antichrist has often been among us. Satan is ALWAYS at work to oppose God’s work and some people will deliberately take their stand with Satan, not God. But what does all of this mean? It means that we must be sure of our own commitment to Christ. If our lives are not firmly built on Christ’s truths, we can and will be lead astray. Please don’t let that happen. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-18

Prayers connect us to God’s work around us

Whatever you ask in My name, that I will do (jn14:13). Prayer connects us with God’s true purposes, not just for our lives but also to the world around us. Our prayers (in many ways we will never understand this side of Heaven) makes us partners with God. God is working through our prayers. Please don’t think this is an open invitation to just God’s anything (you know like a gene in a bottle). Our prayer must first mean something of importance to us, before we bring them to God. Otherwise we are asking and praying in vain. In Christ’s model prayer He ended it with “thine is the kingdom, the power and glory, for ever”(mt14:13). Remember, we must seek God’s glory (not ours) in our prayers and not just our selfish desires. If we are to have our prayers answered we must be willing to give God the glory- no matter the outcome. Our Lord said to His disciples “Whatever you ask in My name that l will do, that the Father May be glorified in the Son” (mt14:13). Do our prayer reflect God’s glory? Have a blessed day.

2018-11-17

God’s unseen bodyguards

His angles... keep you in all your ways (psm91:11). Every once in a while we may see reports of happenings that cannot be humanly explained (of visitors unexpectedly appearing to assist in times of crisis or warning of impending danger). They can only be explained as the intervention of God’s angels. In the Bible angels occasionally assume visible form (like at the birth of Christ for example). But usually angels go about their business unseen and unrecognized. They never draw attention to themselves, but point us to Christ. The great Christian author C.S.Lewis once said that we tend to make one of two errors about Satan: we either make too little of him or we make too much. The same can be said of angles. Don’t make too little of them. God has given “His angles charge over you, too keep you in all your ways”(psm91:11). On the other hand, don’t worship them or become preoccupied with them. Instead we should be thanking God for His angles and rejoice in their unseen watchfulness over us. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-16

Unseen watchfulness

His angles... keep you in all your ways (psm91:11). Every once in a while we may see reports of happenings that cannot be humanly explained (of visitors unexpectedly appearing to assist in times of crisis or warning of impending danger). They can only be explained as the intervention of God’s angels. In the Bible angels occasionally assume visible form (like at the birth of Christ for example). But usually angels go about their business unseen and unrecognized. They never draw attention to themselves, but point us to Christ. The great Christian author C.S.Lewis once said that we tend to make one of two errors about Satan: we either make too little of him or we make too much. The same can be said of angles. Don’t make too little of them. God has given “His angles charge over you, too keep you in all your ways”(psm91:11). On the other hand, don’t worship them or become preoccupied with them. Instead we should be thanking God for His angles and rejoice in their unseen watchfulness over us. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-15

God hates sin

To fear the Lord is to hate evil, I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech (pro8:13). From our human standpoint some sins (sins like murder, assault, or even stealing) are worse than others. But the Bible doesn’t tell us which sin is worst in God’s eyes, and the reason is because God hates ALL sin. Our God is absolutely pure and holy; even the smallest sin is evil in His sight. I’m afraid we have largely lost sight of the holiness and purity of God in our lives. This is the reason why we tolerate sin so easily and can casually dismiss so many sins as minor or insignificant. We need a new vision of who God is and who we are as sinners in His sight. No matter how good we think we are God’s judgement still stands. But the good news is that despite all our sins God loves us and He yearns to forgive us. Don’t excuse your sins or tolerate it any longer, turn it over to God and let Him help you to begin to follow Him every day. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-14

Draw near to God

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you (jms4:8). The story has been told of a little boy who was playing with a valuable vase. He put his hand into it and couldn’t get it out. His father too, tried his best to get the little boys hand out, but all in vain. They were thinking of breaking the vase when the father said,”My son, let’s make one more try, I need you to open your hand and hold your fingers out straight as you see me doing, and then we will pull.” To His fathers astonishment the little boy said,”Oh no, daddy! I couldn’t do that, because if I do I would drop my penny.” Now I know some of you are smiling, but we have all been just like the little boy. We are so busy holding on to the world’s worthless trifles that we cannot accept God’s freedom. What “trifles” are keeping you from God? A sin that you won’t let go of, an unworthy ambition, a dishonorable relationship? I pray you drop your trifle in your heart. Surrender it, let it go and let God have his way in your life. You will not regret it! Have a blessed day.

2018-11-13

Satan’s lies, God’s promises

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (phil4:13). The question has been asked (or may you have wondered), “If I get born again (saved), will all my problems go away?” The answer is a big fat no, but we will have the power to deal with them. God will give us wisdom and courage. He will surround us with others in Christ to help carry our burdens, He will even give us insight and practical assistance. Satan will ALWAYS try to discourage those who belong to Christ. When problems persist (or major life crisis’ occur), Satan may even whisper, “See God doesn’t care about you.” But that is a lie. With the Holy Spirit’s help, we can combat the evil one and contradict his lies. If God dismissed all of our problems, with a single stroke, we would be left defenseless to meet the inevitable attacks of the enemy of our souls. But in the midst of life’s problems, our God will supply everything we need to see us through! Don’t believe Satan’s lies- believe in God’s promises. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-11

There is a season

To everything there is a season... a time to be born and a time to die (eccl3:1-2). We live in a sin-scarred world and much of what happens falls short of God’s original plan. When we don’t or can’t understand why God allows things to happen (the death or illness of a loved one), He can still be trusted to do what is right. God is sovereign and He knows what’s best for you, for the person who is suffering and for all those affected by their suffering or death. In God’s time, He will take the suffering saint to be with Him. When someone we love is suffer or has passed, we should ask God to teach us whatever lessons He has for us in this experience. This is sometimes the last thing we want to do because we too are suffering as we watch and care for our loved one. Sometimes, God allows our loved one to linger to teach us how to love others who are in need, or to reconcile to others, or just to remind us of the brevity of life. Whatever God’s reason remember that God’s glory will be shown and that nothing happens without His knowledge. So, Love your loved one as they face life’s greatest challenge... Have a blessed day.

2018-11-10

A place for you

If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again (jhn14:3). The great Christian author C.S.Lewis said in his book “Christian Behavior”, that “Hope is one of the Theological virtues.” He meant that a continual looking forward toward to heaven is not a form of escapism (as some may think), but one of the things a Christian is meant to do. This doesn’t mean we are to leave this present world as it is. If we read history we find that the Christians who did the most for this present world were those who thought of the next. “Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth, and you will get neither”(C.S.Lewis). In the midst of the pessimism, gloom and frustration of this present hour there is one bright beacon of hope- and that is the promise of Jesus Christ. “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will again come and receive you to Myself”(jhn14:3). Are you aiming for heaven or aiming for earth? Have a blessed day.

2018-11-09

Joy

But the fruit of the Spirit is...joy (gal5:22). The word joy has all but been lost in our Christian vocabulary. One reason is because we have confused joy with happiness, and have come to believe it is found in pleasure, security and prosperity. But in doing this we, have begun to believe a lie that Satan is telling the world to believe. But in the book of James, didn’t write, “count it all joy when you fall into an easy chair.” He said,”Count it all joy when you fall into various trials”(jms1:2). Joy is NOT the same as happiness-but they may overlap. Happiness depends on circumstances; joy depends on God. Happiness vanishes when life turns painful; joy keeps going and may even grow stronger. Joy comes from a living vital relationship with God. It comes from the fact that, even if we do not see God we”believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy”(1pt1:8). It comes from knowing this world is only temporary and that someday we will be with God forever. Where’s your joy? Have a blessed day.

2018-11-08

Ask and you will receive

Ask and you will receive, that your joy may be full (1pt2:1). Prayer is our mighty privilege. Think of it- we have the incredible privilege of approaching the God of the universe, we can do this because Jesus has opened the way, “the High and Lofty One who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy (isa57:15). We pray in times of adversity, lest we become faithless and unbelieving. We pray in times prosperity, lest we become boastful and proud. We pray in times of danger, lest we become fearful and doubting. We pray in times of security, lest we become self-sufficient. Pray, believing in the promise of God’s Word that “IF we ask anything, according to HIS will, He hears us”(1jn5:14). We pray not to some Gene in a bottle, but the very creator of all that we have and are. How is your prayer life? Have a blessed day.

2018-11-07

Who is Jesus?

Who do you say I am? (Mtt16:15). The great Christian author C.S.Lewis pointed out that there are only four possible conclusions that we can reach about Jesus. Either He was a lair or He was self-deceived, or insane or He was in fact He was in fact who He claimed to be: the Son of God. So... which was He? The only logical conclusion is that He was the Son of God. A lair couldn’t have taught the lofty morals He did. A self-deceiver couldn’t have performed the many miracles He did. A lunatic couldn’t have held up under the pressure the way Jesus did. After spending lengthy time with Jesus, His disciples concluded:”You are the Christ the Son of the living God”(mtt16:16). But there is another reason for believing Christ is who He says He is: His resurrection from the dead. In all of human history only Christ has come back from the grave: Jesus “was declared with power to be the Son of God By his resurrection from the dead”(rms1:4). So...who do you say He is? Have a blessed day.

2018-11-06

God’s down payment

Blessed be the Lord... There has not failed one word of all His good promise(1kng8:56). When we purchase a house, we are required to put down a deposit. It is our promise that our intentions are serious. It is a form of insurance to the builder or seller, a guarantee that adds value to our word. God has promised us some incredible promises- one that staggers the imagination. He has promised us a relationship with Him through His Son. He has promised to never leave us or forsake us. He has promised to take us to Heaven when we die. Some may ask,”What insurance do we have that God is serious? How do we know God’s promises can be trusted?” God’s greatest deposit (promise): His Son, who by His death and resurrection purchased our salvation. Not only is He a sufficient “down payment “ on God’s promises, He is in fact is our full payment! Have you excepted God promise of Christ? Please do so today, we are not promised a tomorrow. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-05

Overcoming my unbelief

I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!(psm9:24). Evil is real, we encounter it everyday. Maybe you, like I have wondered why God doesn’t just reach down and stop it. Sometimes He does, but not always. The Bible tells us that evil is a mystery that we will not fully understand until we get to Heaven. But until we get there, God wants us to trust Him. Maybe you have lost a loved one, or maybe someone you know is battling cancer, maybe you have lost your job- this list goes on and on. Bitterness and anger can be the result from the evil we have faced... but don’t let those emotions drive a wedge between you and God. That will gain nothing, and in the long run will end up only destroying you. Instead, let your attitude be that of the psalmist:”As for me it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge”(psm73:28). Allow God to help you to trust Him even when our ways seems dark and hopeless. He has promised to help us if we let Him! Have a blessed day.

2018-11-04

Cast your burdens

Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you (psm55:22). When I was young, I was taught the Serenity Prayer:”God, grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” We have learned in life that there are something’s that cannot be changed and something’s that can. God has given us certain fixed realities that must be accepted. And some things He would have us not accept, but (with His help) work to change. But if we fail to do both-to accept some things and work to change others- we will end up with worry, undeserved guilt and frustration. It has been said that, “Worry is the interest paid on a trouble before it becomes due.” Whatever burdens you are facing place them on God’s shoulders and leave them there, our lives will be more fulfilling and less distracting when we do. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-03

Predicting the future

Trust in God; trust also in me... I am going there to prepare a place for you (jn14:1-2). Since the beginning of the human race, people have tried to predict the future. As a Christian, I believe that only God knows our future and we are to look to Him- not horoscopes, the stars, tea leaves or even the lines on our hands. One reason the Bible strongly urges us to avoid any of these practices is that they are linked to the occult (the study of the supernatural, mystical or magical beliefs). An Astrologer can never give us the answer to life’s deepest questions- especially where our eternity is at stake. Fortune tellers can’t predict our next breath we take or when we will die. The Bible reminds us:”Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be (psm139:16). Only God knows our beginning and ending- trust in Him only for each breath you take. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-02

The grace of God

Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrong (hab1:13). What does it mean when we hear someone talk about “the grace of God”? It means much more than God’s kindness and mercy (these are evidences of His grace). Grace means “undeserved favor or goodness” (not getting what we truly deserve). God doesn’t owe us anything- yet in His grace, He still gives us good things. Most of all, we don’t deserve to go to Heaven, but in His grace God has provided the way: He sent His Son Christ to die for our sins. Remember: by nature we have no right to expect anything from God except His judgement. We don’t like to admit this, wanting to believe instead that we are good, and that alone should get us to Heaven. But the bottom line is we should be thankful to God for His saving grace, extended to us throughHis Son Jesus. We should be seeking God-being grateful for His grace bestowed on us daily. Have a blessed day.

2018-11-01

Marked with a seal

Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit (eps1:13). God gives us a seal when we accept Christ as our Savior, and that seal is the Holy Spirit. By the Spirit’s presence God gave us security and establishes His ownership over us. The Spirit is also God’s pledge. He not only seals the arrangement but He represents God’s commitment to see us through life’s many trial and testing. The fellowship that we experience with the Spirit is a small sample of what we can expect when we get to Heaven. Lastly, the Spirit is witness to us, by scriptures and within our hearts, that Christ is who He says He is, and by our faith in Him, we become His children. The Holy Spirit is our seal, our pledge and our witness- May each of these give us a new assurance of God’s unchanging love for us, and give us the confidence we need as we seek to live for Him. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-31

How old is God?

Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God (psm90:2). The question has been asked: “ How Old is God?” This is a very good question, and maybe you have have asked the question yourself. The answer is: “God is timeless.” He has always existed. God has no beginning, and He has no end. He was never young, and He will never grow old. For some this statement is hard to grasp because everything around us grows old or wears out. Unlike us we do grow old, and sometimes we think we wear out. We were once young - now years later we are wearing out! So why is this question so important that we understand that God is timeless? Because it means we can trust God with our life. He won’t die or grow old and weak or even forgetful; He loves us and He is always there to take care of us. This is an important truth, one that we should always remember- no matter our age! Have a blessed day.

2018-10-30

Barriers

By my God, I can leap over walls (psm18:29). The Bible confronts us with our moral independence within us and our spiritual dependence upon God. In the words of psalms 18, David writes “By my God, I can leap over a wall.” It is true there some barriers in our lives that we can leap over, because God hasn’t left us completely powerless But some walls are so high and so difficult, that we need help. No matter how many times we try to scale the wall, we keep falling short. But with God’s help we can scale each wall no matter the size. What walls do you need getting over? A bad habit that can’t be broken? Are you so deep in grief that you can see anything? An attitude that keeps you from others? A heart that is in the grips of doubt, discouragement, or fear? Whatever wall you are facing- face it with God’s help, lean on Him as He helps you scale your wall! Have a blessed day.

2018-10-29

Hope for our future

May we know what this new doctrine is of which you speak? (Acts17:19). Paul was speaking in Athens to a group of well-known intellectuals. In his speech, he covered three important points of the gospel. First, Paul talked about the only true God, the Creator who is holy, and unchanging in His love for us. Paul also talked about the need to repent and the coming judgement (repentance means recognizing and accepting God’s holiness, our sinfulness and Jesus’ sacrificial death for us). And lastly Paul talked about the resurrection of Christ, which gives us hope for our future. We who are are Christians are assured of a glorious and eternal tomorrow. But most in Athens rejected the words of Paul, but some did become followers of Christ. So, as you share your belief in Christ, understand that most will not come to Christ’s saving knowledge- but rejoice in those that do. Never stop sharing Christ. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-28

He is able

Come to Me... and I will give you rest (mt11:28). We sometimes forget that Jesus was human as well as divine. He had calluses on His hands, and if His chisel slipped and cut His finger His blood was red and warm. He knew what it was like to work long hard hours, only to come in at the end of the day tired and weary. When are exhausted and hurting, we should take comfort from the fact that Jesus knows what it is like too. Christ’s greatest achievement was not made in His carpenter’s shop, or even in turning water into wine, or even healing the blind or raising the dead. His greatest work was found in His death and resurrection. There the burden of our sins were placed on Him and He won our salvation. When we find ourselves tired, lonely, hurting or are facing great struggles, know that our Lord is able and willing and more importantly understands what we are facing. Turn to Him for comfort and rest for He is able and willing to give it. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-27

Laying up treasures

Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven (mt6:20). The story has been told of an old man, a great man of God, who was lying on his deathbed. He summoned his grandson to come to his side. Calling the young boy’s name, he said,”I don’t know what type of work I will be doing in Heaven, but if it’s allowed, I’m going to ask the Lord Jesus to let me help to build your mansion. So you be sure to send up plenty of the right materials.” Living a life of purity and love, leading others to Christ as we share our faith, doing good works in Christ’s name- all of these are materials that may be sent on ahead. These can never be touched by the fluctuations in the Earthly economy, by natural disasters or thievery. The question has to be asked:”What kind of materials are you sending up to Heaven?” Have a blessed day.

2018-10-26

Heart felt prayers

Whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you will receive them, and you will have them (mtt11:24). It has been said that before our prayers can mean anything to God, they must first mean something to you. Prayer is speaking to God about anything from our smallest thoughts to our deepest concerns of our hearts. Not a gene in a bottle, granting every wish, but heart felt concerns. What is the source of true prayer? It is a heart attuned to God. It is a life lived in loving obedience to the Father. God delights in the prayers of His children-prayers that express our love for Him, prayers that share our deepest burdens with Him. Don’t pray casually or thoughtlessly, but “come boldly to the throne of grace, that (you) May obtain mercy and find grace to help in your time of need”(heb4:16). So, what hearts felt prayers should you be taking to God? He is waiting for you... Have a blessed day.

2018-10-25

Marriage and family

He sets the poor on high...and makes their families like flock (psm107:4). One of the primary reasons for the breakdown of the home today is that we have forgotten God’s commands concerning marriage. God gave marriage to us, and His standards haven’t changed. Divorce was not part of God’s original design. “A man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife (mat19:5).” Marriage is a symbol of the unity between Christ and His Church.-a unity that should never be torn. No marriage is beyond repair with God’s help. But we must humble ourselves and put our pride and self-will aside. We must put others (our spouse) ahead of ourselves. Do not think God can’t forgive you if you have experienced a divorce, He can forgive the past, heal the present, and give you hope for the future. For those that are married, treasure your spouse as a gift from God and please never forget to yield your marriage to Christ. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-24

Good deeds don’t get us into Heaven

There is none righteous, no, not one (rms3:10). Do you know people who are trusting in their good deeds to get them to Heaven (like some religions suggest)? I do, and if so we may want to ask them this important question:”By what standard do you think God will judge you?” Their reply might be something like this: “I am a good person. I may not be perfect, but I have always tried to do what is right (haven’t, murdered anyone, committed adulatory).” But God’s standard is nothing less than perfection, (that means even one sin is enough to keep us out of Heaven) and that means we can not make it to Heaven on our own- no matter how good we think we are. So, if we know someone who thinks their good deeds are their ticket to Heaven, please do not let them gamble with their souls. Instead, share with them the gospel encouraging them to repent of their pridefullness and trust in Christ alone for their salvation. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-23

God’s examples

These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings to us (1cor10:11). Don’t you find it encouraging that God would include real-life, flesh and blood sinful people in His Word. David committed adulatory and murder, Abraham lied about his wife- and that just the beginning. Why are they in the Bible, not just meer stories to fill up pages. They are there so we can learn from there wrong-doings. One lesson we learn is that sin always comes with consequences. Look at David’s life. He was a great leader a good man in many ways, “a man after mine (God’s) own heart (acts13:22). But he was also a lying murderer who covered his adultery. David’s influences for good was lost, and in the last years of his life was marked by rebellion and tragedy. God has much to teach us from the examples of His people who have failed. But most of all God’s Word points us to Christ who He alone can forgive us and set us on the right path. Thank God for the examples of those in His Word- the good, the bad and the ugly... Have a blessed day.

2018-10-22

Our great hope

In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world (jn16:33). These are wonderful words of encouragement. But I do have to admit that I do not know why some people suffer more that other- or even why bad things seemly happen to good people. There is a mystery to evil that we will never understand this side of Heaven; the Bible speaks of “the mystery of iniquity” (2thes2:7). But one thing I am sure of, we live in a world that is in the grip of evil (all we have to do is turn on the news for proof). This world is not the way God meant it to be; it is in the grip of “spiritual forces of evil in the Heavenly realm”(eph6:12). In the light of this truth, we must not blame God for everything that happens in our lives (something that many do),especially the bad things. Instead we must remember that in His death and resurrection, Jesus has confronted Satan and won! This is our great hope and this should bring us comfort. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-21

Take My yoke

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me (mtt11:29). Have you ever known someone who asked questions about God, and no matter how many you answered they seemed to keep asking? Sometimes people keep asking questions just to avoid facing their own spiritual need and acknowledging who Jesus really is. All of their questions may be an excuse to keep from turning their life over to Christ we may want to counter all of their questions with just this one question: “If I answer all of your questions, would you be willing to turn from sins and commit your life to Jesus? If their answer is no-let them know that you still care for them and want to be their friend. Make sure they know what the gospel is. Many don’t really understand. Please don’t give up on them, maybe one day they will give their life to Christ. But most importantly pray and continue to set that godly example, understanding that only God can change a hardened heart. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-20

Jesus hears your cries

He will give angels charge of you to guard you in all your ways (psm91:11). There is a story that is told of a poor Chinese woman, who went up the foothills to cut grass. Her baby was tied to her back and a small child by her side. Just as she reached the top of the hill, she heard a tiger roar, just as the tiger jumped at her. The women who had never attended school or church, but she did remember what a missionary had told her about Jesus. Jesus, “who is able to help you when you are in trouble.” As the tiger clawed at her, she cried out,”O,Jesus, help me!” The tiger ran away. What “beasts” are attacking you? We may never be attacked by a wild animal, but chances are we will be attacked by doubt, worry, fears, loneliness, financial ruin, loss of a job or maybe despair. Call out to Jesus, and He will answer you- just as He heard the Chinese woman’s desperate cry- He will answer your cries. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-19

Family

He sets the poor on high...and makes their families like flock (psm107:4). One of the primary reasons for the breakdown of the home today is that we have forgotten God’s commands concerning marriage. God gave marriage to us, and His standards haven’t changed. Divorce was not part of God’s original design. “A man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife (mat19:5).” Marriage is a symbol of the unity between Christ and His Church.-a unity that should never be torn. No marriage is beyond repair with God’s help. But we must humble ourselves and put our pride and self-will aside. We must put others (our spouse) ahead of ourselves. Do not think God can’t forgive you if you have experienced a divorce, He can forgive the past, heal the present, and give you hope for the future. For those that are married, treasure your spouse as a gift from God and please never forget to yield your marriage to Christ. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-18

Ticket to Heaven

There is none righteous, no, not one (rms3:10). Do you know people who are trusting in their good deeds to get them to Heaven (like some religions suggest)? I do, and if so we may want to ask them this important question:”By what standard do you think God will judge you?” Their reply might be something like this: “I am a good person. I may not be perfect, but I have always tried to do what is right (haven’t, murdered anyone, committed adulatory).” But God’s standard is nothing less than perfection, and that means we can not make it to Heaven on our own- no matter how good we think we are. So, if we know someone who thinks their good deeds are their ticket to Heaven, please do not let them gamble with their souls. Instead, share with them to repent of their pridefullness and trust in Christ alone for their salvation. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-15

The right path

These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings to us (1cor10:11). Don’t you find it encouraging that God would include real-life, flesh and blood sinful people in His Word. David committed adulatory and murder, Abraham lied about his wife- and that just the beginning. Why are they in the Bible, not just meer stories to fill up pages. They are there so we can learn from there wrong-doings. One lesson we learn is that sin always comes with consequences. Look at David’s life. He was a great leader a good man in many ways, “a man after mine (God’s) own heart (acts13:22). But he was also a lying murderer who covered his adultery. David’s influences for good was lost, and in the last years of his life was marked by rebellion and tragedy. God has much to teach us from the examples of His people who have failed. But most of all God’s Word points us to Christ who He alone can forgive us and set us on the right path. Thank God for the examples of those in His Word- the good, the bad and the ugly... Have a blessed day.

2018-10-13

Walk in Wisdom

Walk in wisdom... redeeming the time (col4:5). The master musician understands the long hours, days and sometimes years of self-sacrifice that precedes the one hour of perfection when his efforts are applauded. The master craftsman knows the years of work, sacrifice and suffering precede his being promoted to the master of his trade. The student knows that years of study, self-denial and commitment precede the day of graduation. The Word of God teaches us that sacrifice and discipline are necessary if we are to be faithful servants of Christ. Paul said, “I discipline my body and bring it into subjection lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified “ (1cor9:27). Discipline our time...discipline our eyes...discipline our bodies... discipline our minds... all for the sake of Christ. In all of these things we will be drawn to a closer walk with Christ, allowing us to defend the cause of the gospel. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-12

The Way

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me (jn14:6). There is an old saying: :All roads lead to Rome.” Maybe it was true in the ancient times, but today we can get lost anywhere (thank goodness for google maps). But the road we are on may lead in the exact opposite direction from our goal (in our life). Not all roads lead to God, as some have suggested. There is one major roadblock that keeps us from reaching God. Our roadblock of sin. God as given us a map (the Bible) and a guide who knows the way and will give us direction (if we let Him)- Jesus. Christ did not say, “I am one of many roads (ways) that lead to God.” No, what He said was, “I am the (only) way.” This was not arrogance, or narrow-mindedness, or even lack of compassion on Christ part. It is simply the truth: only Jesus can from Heaven to pay the price for our sins (something we can never do on our own). IF... you are following Christ you’ll never be lost! Have a blessed day.

2018-10-11

Time is near

Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near (rev1:3). God gave us the book of Revelation to encourage us and to show us that there is hope for the future. Let’s see things from a different prospective: if we only look at the headlines of the day, we would think that the world is in a never-ending cycle of war, crime and violence (you know... chicken little, the sky is falling!). This can easily make us cynical and discouraged. But the book of Revelation gives us a different picture. Someday, we are promised that Jesus will return and triumph over all evil, Hell and Satan. All evil and death will be destroyed and Christ’s victory over sin and Satan will be complete. No matter what we are facing today or tomorrow, we can have hope- because of Christ. So don’t be discouraged by the headlines of today, I have read the end of Revelation and Christ win! Have a blessed day.

2018-10-10

The righteousness of God

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God (2cor5:21). We will never be good enough to go to Heaven. This statement might shock you or even hurt your feelings, but keep reading because it is true. The reason is because God is absolutely holy and pure-and it is for this reason He cannot and will not tolerate sin. So let’s put this another way, even one sin would be enough to keep us out of Heaven. The Bible is very clear: “Nothing impure will enter (Heaven), nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful “(rev21:27). Does that mean that there is no hope for us? No, Jesus is our hope. God loves us and wants us to be with Him forever. To make this possible, He sent Christ to do for us what we can never do on our own. We deserve to die for our sins, but Christ has done that for us. And because of this we can be forgiven and can enter into Heaven. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-09

More than Conquerors

In all theses things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us (rms8:37). When Satan mounts his attacks against us (if not now just wait), why do we behave as if we are prisoners of war, or even worse yet, conscientious objectors? We do not have to live defeated lives. God wants us to live victorious lives. There is only one way to have victory over sin, and it is to walk so closely with Christ that our sin no longer dominates our lives. We become exceptions rather than the rule. Why does this make a difference? Simple: The closet we are to Christ, the farther we are from Satan. The Bible tells us, “Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you”(jms4:7-8). Are you closer to Christ this week then you were last week? Have a blessed day.

2018-10-08

Choose Life

I have set before you life and death... therefore choose life(deut30:19). What if God chose to remove all evil from our world, it would mean that the essence of “humanness” would be destroyed. We would be not different from robots. If God eliminated evil by programming us to preform only good acts, we would lose our ability to make choices. We would no longer be free moral agents, we would be robots. Robots do not love, and God created us to love. Our love is based on our right to choose love, we cannot force others to love us. True love is based on one’s freedom to choose to respond. So, when we chose to love God, we are choosing life in all of its good and bad. This world is full of love and evil, but given the choice, I would rather be responsible for my actions than to be a robot without responsibilities. I am greatful that God didn’t create me to be a robot... how about you? Have a blessed day.

2018-10-07

Perfect Love

There is no fear in love; but perfect love cast out fear (1jn4:18). The world of Jesus’ day was filled with fear, much like the world we live in today. The hearts of people everywhere were filled with fear and distrust. Life was precarious and above all, people feared death, again, much like our world today. What are your fears? Do you fear life’s burdens and trials, maybe you fear death? Christ can put an end to fear for those who trust Him. “Do not fear, little flock”(lk12:32). Christ is the answer to any fear we have. Remember: God’s power IS greater than the powers of evil, and “neither death nor life, neither angles nor demons, neither the present not future... nor ANYTHING else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord”(rms8:38-39). Have a blessed day.

2018-10-06

Book of Life

If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire (rev20;15). These are scary words- the scariest words imaginable. The Bible tells us that in Heaven there are two sets of books. One set records every detail of our lives: “everything” from our birth to our death, all to be held against us at the day of judgement. On that judgement day those who have not excepted Christ will be thrown into the lake of fire (which was not suppose to be for us but for Satan and his demons). The second set of books is the Book of Life. When we receive Christ as our Savior and Lord, our name is blotted out of the first set of books. God no longer remembers our sins- none of them (past, present or future), because they have been blotted out by the blood of Jesus. Only the names written in the Book of Life will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Is your name written in the Book of Life? If not you can make sure today that it is. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-05

Grace

It is by grace you have been saved, through faith- and this not from yourselves, it is gift of God (eps2;8).Scientists tell us that every star moves along a precise course, to ignore the detail rules of the universe would spell ruin to the star. Our laws of nature are fixed. Because the laws in God’s material realm are so fixed and exact, would He be so haphazard in the spiritual realm, where the eternal state of all are at stake. Just as God has equations and rules in our material realm, He also has equations and rules in the spiritual realm. “The wages of sin is death”(rms6:23). This is God’s formula: when a person sins, he or she will pay for it- in this life and in our life to come. We cannot be saved by our good works, but only through faith in the One who took our sins upon Himself and died in our place. This is grace- getting heaven when we deserve hell. This is the love Christ has given us. Have a blessed day.

2018-10-04

Love one another

Love one another as I have loved you (jn15:12). It has been said that Sr. Francis Assisi discovered the secret to happiness when he prayed this prayer: O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek; To be consoled as to console, To be understood as to understand, To be loved as to be loved; For it is in giving that we receive; It is in pardoning that we are pardoned; It is in dying, that we are born into eternal life. Our tears shed for self are tear of weakness, but tears shed for others are a sign of strength. We are not as sensitive as we should be until we are able to “weep over the erring one and lift up the fallen.” And until we have learned the value of compassionately sharing with others their sorrows, distress, and misfortune, we cannot know real happiness. It is said that the opposite of love isn’t hate. It’s selfishness! Where does your happiness lie? Have a blessed day.

2018-10-03

The secret place of the Most High

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty (psm91;1). Someone has said that the only certainty in life is uncertainty- and this is true. Wars destroy, governments collapse, disasters strike, our stock markets plummet, and our relationships end. But even in spite of these things the human heart has a deep yearning for security. We know we need a solid foundation to life, a foundation that cannot be shaken. Where can it be found? It can only be foundation in our God, He who never changes. He will never love you more or less than He does right now. Nothing you can do or say will change His mind. This is why we can look to Him for the security and stability we all seek. Our salvation is not a occasional, vague feeling of God’s presence. It is actually dwelling with God, secure in His presence not matter what life throws at us. So I ask this question...”Where does your security lie? In Christ or the things of this world? Have a blessed day.

2018-10-02

A place for us

If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come and receive you to Myself (jn14:3). “Foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of man has no place to lay his head”(mt8:20). Jesus had no permanent home, this side of heaven. Think about all that He gave up to come to earth. His Heavenly home was filled with unimaginable beauty, glory and splendor. But yet scripture tells us that, He “emptied Himself... being born in human likeness” (phil2:7). Out of His great love for us, He left Heavens glory for His earthly ministry. But His story didn’t end there, now He has returned to Heaven and one day (hopefully soon) we will join Him, He wants to share all of Heavens glory with us. The story is told of a little girl talking with her dad, looking up at the stars saying- “Daddy if the wrong side of Heaven is so beautiful, what must the right side look like?” One day we will know... that is a promise from Christ! Have a blessed day.

2018-10-01

Is God’s grace Sufficient?

We conduct ourselves in the world... by the grace of God (2cor1:12). Is God’s grace really sufficient in times of trouble? Can it truly sustain us in the midst of life’s storms? These are questions I have asked myself many times this last year, and maybe you have too? But to be honest, sometimes it’s hard for us to rely on God’s grace, instead of ourselves. This last year has been a very difficult year for our family. We think we have control of our lives, and we believe we are responsible for shaping our own future. But, when the troubling trials of life happen, we are consumed by them instead of depending on God. We have to make a choice, do we allow our troubles to toss us or do we allow God’s grace to carry us through. Many allow the trials their trials to make them angry, bitter or even lead them into a depression. But I beg you, don’t let that happen. Put God to the test when troubles come. He won’t let you down. “My grace is sufficient for you”(2cor12;9). It was sufficient for Paul, and it will be for us too! Have a blessed day.

2018-09-26

Christ’s Return

I will come back and take you to be with me (jn14:3). C.S. Lewis once identified three reasons why people don’t believe in the return of Jesus. First, they claim that Christ’s did not take place as the early church hoped- so it must be a myth. This argument is nothing new; “In the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their evil desires. They will say ‘Where is this “coming” he promised? Even since our fathers died, everything goes on as since the beginning of creation’”(2pt3:3-4). Second, if we are to believe humanity, we are constantly progressing, we will never see the need for the return of Christ. Thirdly, the teaching of Jesus’ return cut across the plans and dreams of millions of people (interrupting their lives). They want to eat, drink and be merry and His return would intrude on what they are doing- and people don’t want that. But Jesus will return- could be today or in a hundred years from now. Either way are you ready? Have a blessed day.

2018-09-25

Not of this World

Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep (rms12:15). Jesus ate with the social outcasts and sinners. But His relationship with them wasn’t purely social; it was redemptive. We in turn must not get our worlds mixed up. God meant that we are not to mingle with the world and get polluted by it, but we are to be a witness to it. We are to ‘weep with those who weep,” suffer with those who suffer and identify ourselves with the poor, sick and needy (whether it be in body, mind or spirit). How else can we reach them for Christ. We are commanded to love those who are involved in the world without being contaminated, influenced, or swayed by them. The only way this can be done is through a close walk with Christ. Like Him, we are to be in the world, but not of the world. It has been said, “It is good for a ship to be in the sea, but bad when the sea gets into the ship.” Have a blessed day.

2018-09-22

The Holy Spirit

When (the Holy Spirit) has come, He will convict the world of sin, and righteousness, and judgement (jhn16:8). The Holy Spirit is God Himself, He lives within us. But why has he come you might ask? He comes to convict us of our sins. He is here to help make us admit to ourselves that we are sinners. We do not come to Christ unless the Spirit draws us. He reveals to us the truths about Christ. The Holy Spirit gives us a new life. When we come to know Christ as our Savior and Lord, the Spirit renews our souls and brings the life of God into us. The Bible also teaches that the Holy Spirit produces fruit in our lives. Our thoughts, words, actions, motives (all that we are and all that we do) begin to reflect the fruit of the Spirit “love, joy, peace,patience, kindness,goodness, faithfulness, and self-control” (gal5:22-23). These fruits come as we begin to yield ourselves to the Spirit. Are you yielding your life to the Spirit of God? Have a blessed day.

2018-09-20

Salt of the Earth

You are the salt of the earth... you are the light of the world (mt5:13-14). The human mind (like nature itself) abhors a vacuum. If our minds and hearts are not filled with God’s truth, something else will take its place: things like occultism, cynicism, false religions and philosophies, drugs, materialism, and on an on... Any of these can easily destroy our freedom, a result when society turns from moral truths found in the Word of God. Moral and spiritual chaos is the inevitable result. We see this everyday in our news headlines and social media outlets. May we who know God’s truth stay committed to the principles outlined in His Word. I pray that we go above and beyond the moral and social truth that man has set before us. And above all may we be the salt and light to our world, proclaiming God’s righteousness and love to our confused and lost world. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-19

Peaceable Life

Lead a quite and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence (1tim2:2). As children of God, we aren’t to isolate ourselves from the world. Some Christians have no friends outside of their church families. We are part of society, and we share in it’s difficulties, problems, and it’s hope. We know human society is affected by sin, and any effort to improve society will always be incomplete and imperfect. We will never be able to build a Utopia on Earth, as some religions suggest. We must do all we can to alleviate suffering and to strike at the root causes of injustice, racial prejudice, hunger and violence. Why? Because God loves this suffering world, not as we do,but in a much greater way. Christ is concerned about the whole person- including the society in which that person lives. Are we sharing the same concerns as Christ? Have a blessed day.

2018-09-18

Perfect Peace

You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind in stayed on you (isa26:3). When we think of peace it carries the idea of unity, rest, ease, and security. Notice our key phrase in the verse: “whose mind is stayed on You.” When we are faced with troubles, our minds naturally focus on them. When we are suffering all we can do is think about the pain. It takes a deliberate act of the will to turn away from our problems and focus our minds on God. When our minds are set on God, we won’t be worried about the future, because we know it is in His hands. When we yield to worry, we deny our Guide the right to lead us forward in confidence, and peace. Please don’t cause Him to grieve over you by indulging in worry, but trust everything into His all-loving care. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-17

The Fullness of Christ

The Kingdom of God... righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (rms14:17). To the great gift of forgiveness God adds the great gift of the Holy Spirit. If we are to live a life of sanity in our modern world, if we want to be men and women who can live victoriously, we need the two-sided gift that God offers to us: first, the work of the Son of God for us and second the work of the Holy Spirit in us. In this way God has answered humanities two greatest needs: the need for forgiveness and the need for goodness. As it has been said,”We need Jesus Christ for our eternal life and we need the Holy Spirit of God for our internal life.” We might want to add, “so we can live our external life to it fullest.” Can it be said that we are living our lives to it fullest in Christ? Have a blessed day.

2018-09-16

Usefulness in God’s Kingdom

As many are led by the Spirit of God, there are sons of God (rsm8:14). The first key to usefulness in God’s Kingdom is humility. Our pride cuts us off from God (and those around us). Pride will deceive us into thinking we can do God’s work without God’s power. When we get self out of the way, the Holy Spirit will sanctify us and empower us so we can be an effective tool in God’s hand. There is a second key, and it is faith-faith that God is sovereign and that He is at work even if we can’t see it. “I will work a work in your days which would not be believe, though it were told you”(hab1:5). Habakkuk was unsure why evil always seemed to win, but God’s response was Habakkuk’s assurance that God was still in control. Remember: God is at work in the midst of our problems. He alone is sovereign, and that is why we can trust Him, even when our days seem dark. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-15

I will give you a new heart

If anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away (2cor5:17). When we come to our saving knowledge in Christ, God’s Word promises, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you”(ez36:26). What a challenge God has- He will give a new heart and a new spirit. It has been said that it is much more difficult to change our disposition than it is our apparel. In fact, it is utterly impossible for us to change our own disposition. We may try the lasted self-help technique or guru, we might even resort to the ways of the ancients- but each attempt is lost because only God can do what we can’t. He changes us from the inside out. If anyone (not everyone chooses) is in Christ, there is a new creation. God doesn’t just want to patch our old nature- He wants to remake us completely into the likeness of Christ (if we let Him). This doesn’t happen all at once because there are old habits and old mindsets that prevent this- but God in His loving manner will change us little by little, bit by bit. Have you allowed God to begin changing your heart? If not, what’s preventing you? Let God start today. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-14

God’s Unchanging Word

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correction and training in righteousness (2tim3:16). There have been times (before salvation) when we have had doubts about God and His Word. There have been many times we have had trouble understanding the Bible’s passages. But by faith we have accepted it (from Genesis to Revelation) as God’s Word. Once we come to Christ for Salvation we are settled that the Bible is the only true Word of God. The confidence we have in God’s Word not only gives us authority to do ministry; it provides a solid foundation for our lives and future. We who trust in God’s Word aren’t living according to what someone else says about the Bible or even some human philosophy. We are basing our faith, our ministries and even our lives itself on God’s unchanging truth as it is presented in His unchanging Word. The question has to be asked,”Is God’s Word the foundation of your life?” Have a blessed day.

2018-09-13

Retuning Void

(My Word) will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire (isa55:11). During one of my college classes, I had a professor who deliberately repeated himself three times. He said it was because the students in the first two or three rows would get the message the first time. The second time those in the middle of the classroom would get it. And those in the third time those in the back of the class would get it, and those in the front would never forget. We should keep this important fact of human nature in mind as we share God’s love with those who He puts in our path. We need to repeat ourselves- repeat our acts of service, our deeds of love, and our words of truth. The Bible tells us, “Let us not become weary in doing good for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (gal6:9). Never give up (not on those whom you love- no matter how stubborn they might be). So, let us saturate ourselves in the Word of God in prayer. Then we will be equipped to share His truth- and repeat it again and again, till those around us never forget it! Have a blessed day.

2018-09-13

Blessed is the man whom you instruct, O Lord (psm94:12). We develop muscles through exercise. It is only when our muscles encounter resistance do they become stronger. In a similar way, the Bible teaches us that we only become stronger through spiritually exercise . We developed our spiritual muscles by meeting the challenges of life. This is never more true than when we face suffering and affliction (from to smallest to the largest), this is one way God makes us stronger. One of the reason God allows our suffering, is to discipline, chasten and to mold us to Christ’s likeness. In one of his last essays he wrote before his death, Christian author C.S.Lewis penned, “We have no right to happiness; only to a obligation to our duty.” So, sometimes our God given duty will include suffering and affliction (none of which we enjoy). But when we do face suffering and affliction, ask God to teach you through it. And remember: “Blessed is the man whom you instruct, O Lord.” Have a blessed day.

2018-09-12

The power of prayer

Shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night? (Lk17:7). Have you every prayed for someone you know or love to come to know Christ as their Savior? Maybe you have prayed for years and years, or maybe you just got tired of praying for that person, and gave up? When we pray, we would do right to remember, that God’s ways and God’s timing aren’t always the same as ours. In fact, His time frame rarely matches ours. We should remember that God is able to do much more than we can’t do. Only God can convict those that don’t know Him of their sins; only God can convince them of the truth of the gospel. This is why no one is hopeless, for God can break through even the hardest of hearts. “Is not My Word...like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?”(jer23:29). So who are you praying for? Please don’t give up on them for their sake! Keep praying for them, even if things seem hopeless! Have a blessed day.

2018-09-11

Suffering and Affliction

Blessed is the man whom you instruct, O Lord (psm94:12). We develop muscles through exercise. It is only when our muscles encounter resistance do they become stronger. In a similar way, the Bible teaches us that we only become stronger through spiritually exercise . We developed our spiritual muscles by meeting the challenges of life. This is never more true than when we face suffering and affliction (from to smallest to the largest), this is one way God makes us stronger. One of the reason God allows our suffering, is to discipline, chasten and to mold us to Christ’s likeness. In one of his last essays he wrote before his death, Christian author C.S.Lewis penned, “We have no right to happiness; only to a obligation to our duty.” So, sometimes our God given duty will include suffering and affliction (none of which we enjoy). But when we do face suffering and affliction, ask God to teach you through it. And remember: “Blessed is the man whom you instruct, O Lord.” Have a blessed day.

2018-09-11

Suffering and Affliction

Blessed is the man whom you instruct, O Lord (psm94:12). We develop muscles through exercise. It is only when our muscles encounter resistance do they become stronger. In a similar way, the Bible teaches us that we only become stronger through spiritually exercise . We developed our spiritual muscles by meeting the challenges of life. This is never more true than when we face suffering and affliction (from to smallest to the largest), this is one way God makes us stronger. One of the reason God allows our suffering, is to discipline, chasten and to mold us to Christ’s likeness. In one of his last essays he wrote before his death, Christian author C.S.Lewis penned, “We have no right to happiness; only to a obligation to our duty.” So, sometimes our God given duty will include suffering and affliction (none of which we enjoy). But when we do face suffering and affliction, ask God to teach you through it. And remember: “Blessed is the man whom you instruct, O Lord.” Have a blessed day.

2018-09-10

Deliver us

(Hezekiah prayed), “O Lord our God, delivered us from (the enemy’s) hand, so that all kingdoms on earth may know that you alone, O Lord, are God (2kgs19:19). Some have said, “Prayer is the highest use to which speech can be put.” But our culture and lifestyles today often view prayer as merely an honored tradition or a polite formality, only used for special holidays or funerals. Most people today I would venture to say pray very little at best. And when they do pray, it’s usually in a state of desperation. But prayer- sincere, believing prayer- is so much more. From cover to cover, our Bible gives us examples of God believing people who prayed and God turned the tide of history. In fact in our modern history there are stories of faithful people of God, praying and turning the tide of history. Hezekiah, Elijah, Elisha, and Paul all prayed and turned the tide of history. So do we believe our prayers can turn the tide of our history? Some would say no, (culture speaking), but those who believe deeply in prayer (godly Christians) would say differently. So what do you say... do you agree with modern culture or do you truly believe in the many promises of God. Our prayers are not a genie in a bottle, but to our God who created the heavens and earth. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-08

Dwelling in the presence

The upright shall dwell in You presence (psm140:13). What would you do if you were invited to meet the Queen of England? You would dress in your best outfit, and you would probably want to be briefed on the proper protocol so you don’t look like a fool. But our promise from the Word of God tells us that one day we will meet a far greater Sovereign: the King of the universe. His dazzling glory will be far greater of that of any Earthly monarch, and in His presence we can only bow in humble worship and praise. Our cry will be that of Revelation:”You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power”(4:11). So I ask, are you prepared for that day when you will meet the King of kings and the Lord of Lord face to face? No one knows the day or hour when our life will end (some sooner rather than later). But the time for us to prepare is now, before it is too late. Commit your life to Christ and begin to live as a child of the King! Have a blessed day.

2018-09-06

God’s Radio Station

The mystery... now has been revealed to His saints (col1:26). The question has been asked many times, does God speak to us, He spoke to those in the Bible, but is He trying to reach us? The answer is yes! But the problem is not with God, it is with us. It’s kinda like driving through a new town and trying to find a radio station (unless you have satellite radio)-you know there are radio stations out there it’s just that you have to locate the correct channel. Like the radio station, we aren’t attune to God. We can only know God in one way: if He revealed Himself to us. And this is just what He has done. He has revealed Himself to the world He created in a fuller way. He has revealed Himself in His written Word (the Bible). Centuries ago He spoke to the prophets and the apostles and by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, they have written down His Word for us. God is trying to break through to us-but are we tuned in to Him and His Word? Have a blessed day.

2018-09-05

Seeking God

My soul thirst for God, for the living God (psm42:2). We live in an age where we are preoccupied with the things of this world, and the words of the psalmist sound strange and almost irrelevant. But the psalmist discovered what most people hopefully realize sooner or later (even if they never admit it): the things of this world can never satisfy the longing of our soul. Only God can meet our deepest yearnings. What do we allow to crowd out the yearning for God in our lives? Husbands, children, our next vacation, work, the next expensive toy? Don’t let anything-or anyone- come between you and God. “Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and wages for what does not satisfy”(isa55:2). God wants us to know Him in a real and personal way, and He has made this possible through His Son Jesus Christ. He loves us and He will give us His peace IF we seek Him. So, what keeps us from seeking our living God? Have a blessed day.

2018-09-04

God’s Secret Agents

He will give his angels charge of you to guide you in all your ways (psm91:11). A secret agent is one who seeks to protect his country, his king or president against any evil forces that are opposed to the one he serves. Th US Secret Service is charged with protecting our president. But no matter how good of a job they do, they will tell us that if someone is fiercely determined to harm the president, even they could not stop it. God has His own secrets agents- His angels. Not the little cherubs like ones with harps and flutes- but those who unseen and unrecognized by the world, they never fail in their appointed task, unlike those serve to protect our country who can fail. There has been much written about angels-but not based on the Bible, but based on popular urban legends. But angels are real, and God has commanded then to watch over us (and watch over us they do). It will only be in eternity when we will find out how many accidents they have prevented or how often they have kept Satan’s malicious spirts from harming us. We must now idolize them as some do, but understand their responsibilities that God created them to do. But for now we can take comfort in their presence and thank God for the love He expresses for us through their service. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-03

How do you spend your time?

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God (1jn4:7). I’m not an expert on this but, I’ve learned that serving the Lord requires prayer and often that means we shed some tears too. One of my most treasured time of the day is my morning quite time spent with God. Any day that I leave my house without a quite time, I look for Satan to smack me from every angle. The power to handle the setbacks from life doesn’t come from our own abilities; it comes from God. Life isn’t easy, we have pockets of life events that are joyful (births, birthdays, holidays, graduations, weddings), but it is our dependence on God that will get us through all things in life. It is important to have a fresh daily anointing from the Holy Spirit and that comes from the time spent with God in His Word and in prayer. The more time we spent with God in those still quiet times better equips us for everything else. A life fueled by prayer and characterized by His love is a life God will use. Have a blessed day

2018-09-02

Work for Good

Wars will continue until the end (dan9:26). Wars, wars and more wars, we hear of them every day. But God calls us to work for peace and to pray for peace. But He also warns us that conflicts and wars will always be part of the human society. Why is that? Why can’t we live together in peace? The reason is simple, it is that our hearts are selfish and filled with anger, greed and lust for power. Until our hearts are changed, we will never know lasting peace. We are a world in rebellion against God. This is why our greatest need is for us to turn to Jesus. Only He can change us from within by His Holy Spirit. Even if there are wars raging, we can have God’s peace, as we open our lives to Christ. Ask God today to give you His peace, and He will IF we let Him. Have a blessed day.

2018-09-01

God’s idea of strength

When I am weak, then I am strong (2cor12:10). God’s idea of strength and our idea of strength are two completely different things. A paradox? No, it is only when we can admit our weakness and are willing to get out of the way can God take over and work. If we try to do God’s will in our own strength, then we can take all the credit for whatever gets accomplished. But that isn’t God’s way. When we let His strength work through us, then He alone will get the glory- and that is as it should be. In the Old Testament God told the leaders of Israel to reduce the size of their armies... the reason, was so that they would place their trust in God and not their own strength. Someone has said, “God’s work, done in God’s way, will never lack for God’s provisions. Where does your strength come from, yourself or God’s? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-31

Be Transformed

Be transformed...that you may prove what is that...perfect will of God (rms12:2). God has a plan for our lives, it is found IF we live in constant fellowship with Him. He will direct and lead us in the fulfillment of this plan. God doesn’t reveal His plan through fortune-tellers, soothsayers, or the influence of our friends, or through the workers of hocus-pocus. God’s perfect will for our lives is reserved for those who have trusted Christ for salvation. We cannot know the will of God unless we are a child of God’s. This is found at the foot of the cross of Christ, confessing our sins and receiving Him into our hearts. Once we come to Christ, we begin a whole new life- a life lived not for ourselves but a life lived for Christ and Christ alone. From that moment on, God wants to show us His will. The question must be asked; “Are you living a life in the will of God?” No matter what we face today (or tomorrow), commit it to God asking Him to guide you. Have a blessed day .

2018-08-30

Walk and not faint

They shall walk and not faint (isa40:31). Never in our history have the nations of the world possessed so many deadly weapons, so many ways to bring death and destruction to so many. But have all of our weapons brought us lasting security? No, if anything it has made us less secure. At any time in the world there is at least thirty different wars raging. This should remind us of the words of Jeremiah: “Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace”(jer8:11). But thankfully in the midst of an uncertain world, we can have peace. It comes from putting our trust in our living God. We can find assurance in Isiah’s words, which were written in a time of great unrest: “Those who (many will not) wait on the Lord, shall renew their strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not faint (jer40;30). We should find strength and security in these words, I know I do! Have a blessed day.

2018-08-29

Peace with God

We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace (rms5:1-2). Have you ever wondered why we close our prayers with the phrase “in Jesus’ name”? We do this because it reminds us that Jesus has opened the door to Heaven for us and that we can approach God only because of what He has done for us. But this isn’t a magic formula or a lucky rabbit’s foot. God answers our prayers solely because of Christ. So does this mean God always answers our prayers the way we wish He would? No, not necessarily- and the reason is because God loves us and knows what is best for us. So when our prayers are answered, they will be because it is God’s will, not necessarily our plans. When we pray, seek God’s will, not ours. Thanking God for the awesome privilege of prayers, and make it part of your life everyday. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-28

Come boldly to the throne of grace

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace (heb4:16). The question has been asked, “How big is God, how do I know He will answer my prayers when there are so people praying to Him?” Some might think, if God is limited, if He isn’t all-powerful and all-knowing then we might be right to think He might not answer our prayers. But God isn’t limited. He’s not like a computer that doesn’t have enough memory. God is infinite in His knowledge and wisdom. Since He created this universe (right down to the smallest subatomic particle) don’t you think He knows everything that is going on in this world (in your life)? Of course. God loves us and is more concerned about us and those we love more than we are. “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father...So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows”(mt10:29,31). So pray with confidence to our great God- He is waiting to hear from you! Have a blessed day.

2018-08-27

A Life of Prayer

He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray (mt14:23). This may shock you to know, but we were created to live a life of prayer. But our sins (even the smallest of them) keep us from praying. We would do well to follow Christ’s example: in spite of His hectic public ministry, He was never to hurried to spend hours in prayer. I would venture to say, most of us spend just a few moments (at best) in prayer if we are lucky. We might say a hurried prayer in the morning, or to bless our food, or a quick prayer at night before we fall asleep. But this is not the example Jesus modeled. Our Lord prayed deeply and repeatedly. He often prayed alone separating Himself from Earthly distractions. I would suggest that we would do the same, find a place (room or a corner) in your home where you can meet regularly alone with God. It will be hard at first, but once you start, if you are like me, you will selfishly do it every day. This quiet, secluded one-to-One prayer time can be your days greatest blessing (I know it is mine). Have a blessed day.

2018-08-26

God Cares

Your Father knows what you need before you ask him (mt6:8). Why pray if God already knows what we need? As parents and grandparents do we discourage our children from telling us what they want or need? No... we love them and take delight in listening to them. Even when we say no, we know it’s for their best, because we know better than they do. So if we care for our children, how much more does our Heavenly Father care for us? One of our greatest privileges as a child of God’s is coming to Him in prayer. Bringing daily our needs (not wants) to Him. Yes, He already knows what our needs are and we can be confident that His answer will always what is best for us. In our daily struggles of life, we have a Heavenly Father that cares for us deeply and wants to provide for us, even when things don’t go our way- He still provides for us. Remember: His Son gave His life “that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (heb4:16). Have a blessed day.

2018-08-23

Clean hands and a pure heart

Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord?... He who has clean hands and a pure heart (psm24:3-4). We live in the most permissive society since pagan times. Movies, billboards, T.V., internet all scream sensual messages at us. Our National motto is, “If it feels good, do it.” There are many Christian books telling of men and women who have committed terrible crimes or were entangled in immorality or sensuality. We rejoice with them that Christ has redeemed and forgiven them. But how much better would their lives have been if they just avoided such sin in the first place. God’s standard has remained the same: “You shall be Holy for I the Lord your God am holy”(lev19:2). The secret to our purity is God. When we are committed to Christ, we will shrink back from all that is impure. Instead, we will seek a pure heart- a heart cleansed by the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-22

Clean Hands and Pure Hearts

Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord?... He who has clean hands and a pure heart (psm24:3-4). We live in the most permissive society since pagan times. Movies, billboards, T.V., internet all scream sensual messages at us. Our National motto is, “If it feels good, do it.” There are many Christian books telling of men and women who have committed terrible crimes or were entangled in immorality or sensuality. We rejoice with them that Christ has redeemed and forgiven them. But how much better would their lives have been if they just avoided such sin in the first place. God’s standard has remained the same: “You shall be Holy for I the Lord your God am holy”(lev19:2). The secret to our purity is God. When we are committed to Christ, we will shrink back from all that is impure. Instead, we will seek a pure heart- a heart cleansed by the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-21

Seeing Christ in our prayers

Far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you (1sam12:23). I am told that there is a statue of Christ in a small town in Scandinavia. There is a story told of a visitor who was very disappointed when he look up to see Christ’s face, and couldn’t see it. The visitor asked one of the attendants why couldn’t he see the face of Christ? The attendant replied, “Sir, if you want to see His face, you must kneel at His feet.” The visitor knelt and he saw. All of us face trials in life, unexpected family issues, job struggles, or money loss. Some of our struggles come from our own doing, some are from circumstances we have no control over. When challenged in life’s struggles our best defense and greatest since of peace come when we kneel in prayer to our Mighty God. It is on our knees that we receive our greatest strengths. So the question has to be asked, have you knelt lately? Have you seeked the face of Christ? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-20

Living for Christ

My days are swifter than a weavers shuttle (job7:6). In the state of North Carolina there are textile mills, where giant looms turn out cloth for many different things. I am told that the loom shuttle’s move with the speed of lightning, scarcely visible to the naked eye. The book of Job tells us that our days are “swifter than a weavers shuttle.” Life passes so quickly it is almost over before we realize it. Some never get the chance to live for Christ, even more pass before they even realize how to live for Christ- but a few- live more for Christ in their short life span than we will ever do in our whole life. Though we live to be seventy, eighty or maybe even ninety, it is but a snap of the finger compared to eternity. Place your hand over your heart and feel the beat. It is saying “Quick, Quick, Quick.” We May have but a few years at most. So the question has to be asked, Are we living the for the Lord or are we living them for something else?. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-19

God’s Deposit

He...put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come (2cor1:22-23). As we trust in Christ, God gives us his Spirit as a pledge or guarantee. In the apostle Paul’s day, a deposit (pledge) did three things: it was a down payment that sealed a bargain, it represented an obligation to buy, and it was a sample of what was to come. As an illustration: suppose you wanted a new car, you put a down payment on it. But what does that mean? First, it seals the transaction (both the seller and buyer are committed). Second, you are committed to pay the balance. Finally, you are able to take possession of it (even though It may belong to the bank). In this same way, the Holy Spirit in our hearts is God’s pledge (or deposit) to us- this seals His commitment to save us, guaranteeing that someday our salvation will be complete, and allowing us to experience it joy right now. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-18

When you pray

When you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans (mt6:7). Look carefully at the prayer life of Christ, and notice the earnestness at which He prayed. Too often we use petty petitions, or oratorical exercise- using the same words we have used for years rather than the cries of our innermost being (l know I have). Also, when (or if) we pray, our thoughts roam (mine do, but I blame it on my ADD). But in doing this we insult God by speaking to Him with our lips while our minds and hearts are far from Him. Suppose you were talking to someone famous. Would you let your mind wander for one moment? I think not, you would be intensely interested in everything that was said, and would probably be careful of what you were saying. How dare we treat the Lord of all with less respect. May our prayers today and every day be from our hearts and with the focus of our whole being. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-17

The Kigdom of Christ

Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom (psm145:13). The government in God’s Kingdom is unique. It’s not a democracy where the people govern, but a “Christocracy” where Christ is the supreme authority. In a society of unredeemed people, democracy is the only fair and equatable system. But no democracy can ever be better than the people who make it up. When citizens are selfishly motivated, the government will be inequitable. When people are dishonest, the government will be the same. When everyone wants his own way, someone is going to get hurt. But in God’s Kingdom, Christ is King. He is compassionate, fair, merciful, and just. When He is sovereign (having supreme rank, power, or authority) in men heart’s, anguish turns to peace, hatred is transformed into love, and misunderstanding into harmony. So, I wonder... is Christ the King of our motives and attitudes or the world? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-16

Wasting time

You do not know what will happen tomorrow (jms4:14). There is a story that has been told of a clergyman who sat by the bed of a dying Christian who had been very shy about his testimony for Christ during his life. The dying man said,”If I had the power I’d shout glory to God.” The clergyman answered, “It’s a pity you didn’t shout glory when you had the power. So, I wonder how many of us will say the same thing as we look back over our lives and see the unused opportunities or the ineffective witness that we have been. Will we weep because we did not allow God to use us as He wanted? “Night is coming when no man can work” (jhn9:4). If ever there is a time to study the scriptures, if ever we are to spend time in prayer, if ever we are to win souls for Christ, if ever we are to invest our finances for His kingdom- the time is now! Have a blessed day.

2018-08-15

Crown of Life

Blessed is the man who endures trials, for he... will receive the crown of life (jms1:12). The Bible tells us that we are strangers and pilgrims in a foreign land. That this is not our home; our home is in Heaven. And that someday our trials here will be done and we will enter our Heavenly home. To the Christian who has been faithful, Christ will give them a crown of life. “There is laid up (waiting) for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only, but also to all who have loved His appearing (2tim4:8). “Earth is receding, Heaven is opening, this is my coronation day “ (D.L.Moody-death bed). Never forget: if we are a Christian, we are a child of the King, and Heaven is our home. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-14

Your own interest

Each of you should look not only to your own interest, but also to the interest of others (phil2:4). Just as Israel was to enter into the Promise Land, the tribes of Reuben and Gad saw that the land east of the Jordan river was good for their livestock. Thinking only of themselves, rather than being concerned about Israel’s well being as a whole, they came to Moses with a request: “Let this land be given to your servants as a possession. Do not make us cross the Jordan’ (num32:5). Moses said in anger, “Shall your countrymen go to war while you sit here?... (If so), you may be sure your sin will find you out”(num32:6). Moses’ Words still ring true today. This verse is for all of God’s people who sit while their brothers and sisters are in need, while others are dying or are spiritually lost. What are we doing to help those in need if nothing, we can be sure our sin will find us out. Who are you helping in need? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-13

Christ’s return

It is good that one should hope and wait for the salvation of the Lord (lam3:26). The promise return of Christ has been the great hope and cornerstone of Christian believers down through the centuries. “He shall come again with glory” (Ancient Nicene creed). But until the time of Christ return, our world remains in the grip of violence and despair, wars and government collapse. It has been written and summed up this way:”For us all, the world is disorderly and dangerous; ungoverned and apparently ungovernable.” Someday, however, the King (our King) will return. Someday the Heavens will shout, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Rev11:15). Christ alone is our answer to the burdens of our hearts and the hopelessness of this world. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-12

Follow Me

If anyone come after me, He must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me (mt16:24). What is a true Christian? It is a person who has made a choice to obey God. This is done initially when we commit our lives to Christ (heaven bound), but we must also make that choice day by day, moment by moment. A Christians life is marked by change, it is transformed by the Holy Spirit. The moment we receive Christ, the Spirit of God lives in our heart. He changes our thoughts, feelings , behavior, goals and relationships. Once we accept Christ’s challenge we deny our own selfish ambitions, and our selfish sinful pleasures- and take up our cross. In what ways are we denying ourselves in order to follow Christ? Choice, change and challenge-these should characterize every Christian. Are they true of us? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-11

Godis Spirit

God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and truth (jn4:24). God is a Spirit (infinite, eternal and unchanging). These three words describe God beautifully. He is infinite (not body bound). He is eternal (He has no beginning and no ending). He is unchangeable (never changing, never capricious, never unreliable). He is forever self-existent. One thing is for sure with us, people change, fashion changes, conditions and circumstances change- but God... He never changes. His love, His holiness, His purpose, and His glory they never change. Nothing we can do or say will change this. No matter how far we may have wandered from Him, He is there for us. He is the same yesterday, today and forever! Can you think of any reason not to trust Him? Neither can I! Have a blessed day.

2018-08-10

Take My yoke

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me (mt11:29). Christ calls us to discipleship. When we come (not all do), He takes away one set of burdens (the burden of sin, guilt, of separation from God and of hopelessness). But He also calls us to follow Him, to turn away from our selfish desires, and to seek His will above all else. He bids us to “take My yoke upon you and learn from Me.” So are we to just exchange one burden for another? No. It is no burden to follow Christ. We become bearers of unexplainable joy, because we are yoked to the Son of God. Nor is it too heavy to bear, because Christ bears it with us: “My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (mt11:30). What burdens are we trying to carry alone, financial burdens, family burdens, health burdens? Are you tired of carrying them alone, let Christ carry them. He wants to help. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-09

Foundations

Who ever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them...is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock (lk6:47-48). Many people today live in homes built on sand. Lacking the right foundation and their families are in trouble. What about us? When the floods of sorrow and the gales of adversity come, or the wiinds of discouragement come will our houses stand? Are we making Christ the foundation of our home-and life? I believe that no home can stand unless the family in the home has a strong faith in Jesus. There needs to be family prayer time and Bible reading and active involvement in a church where Christ is taught and followed. What is the foundation of your home? Are we teaching our children the foundations of Christ? Are we building our future on the rock of Christ’s teachings or self-will? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-08

Let your light shine

Let your light so shine before me , that they may...glorify your Father in heaven (mt5:16). Jesus told His disciples that they could not make their light shine by sinking to the world’s low level. We can not shine if we act like the ungodly of this world, it shows in our words, our actions, and attitudes. It is only when we abide in Christ daily that we can rise above the things of this world. We cannot elevate others higher than we ourselves have gone. The first-century Christians out-thought, out-lived and out-loved their neighbors and by their examples of purity and compassion did they attract countless thousands to the cause of Christ. So the question has to be asked, how brightly is your light shining? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-07

Facing Giants

David said to the Philistine, “You have come to me with a sword, spear, and javelin. But I have come to you in the name of the Lord” (1sam17:45). What giants do you face? Aging parents, raising kids, mounting bills, lost love ones, family conflicts? David faced a giant named Goliath, nine feet tall, clothed in armor, spear the size of a tree trunk. Goliath demanded a warrior, David volunteered. David was out armed, and out experienced. David’s only weapon was a slingshot -and a deep dependence on God- and God gave him the victory. Let’s face it we all face our Goliaths (you know problems too big for us to handle). But Christ wants to help (and He will) if we let Him. No matter the size of the Goliaths you maybe facing, put on the full armour of God (eph6:10-18), and trust Christ to give you the victory no matter the outcome! Have a blessed day.

2018-08-06

Supplying your needs

My God shall supply all your needs (phil4:19). “If you abide in Me, and My Words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you” (jh15:17). Does this verse mean that God gives us a blank check- so to speak- when we pray? Does He promise to give us anything we want if we just keep asking? No, God is not our genie in a bottle when it comes to our prayer request, He loves us too much to answer our foolish or harmful prayers. But I can tell you this- the closer we get to Him, the more we abide in Him and the more His Words abide in us- the more we will desire what He desires and the more our prayers will reflect His will. The Bible promises, “No good thing does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless” (psm84:11). We are to trust this and all the other promises of God with all our heart and soul. Are you trusting in His promises? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-05

Our Heavenly Father knows

Your Heavenly Father knows that you need all these things (mt6:32). We are’t suppose to let money become the most important thing in life, but lets face it when bills mount up it’s hard not to become preoccupied. The Bible talks about money, warning us of it dangers and urging us to put it in its rightful place.”Whoever loves money never has enough money; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied’ (eccl5:10). Putting Christ first, we can ask Him to help us trust Him for all our needs. God knows we need clothes, food, and a place to live, so we shouldn’t worry for those things. Our biggest problem with money come about when we fail at handling our money responsibly- following a realistic budget, developing a plan to pay off our debts; even cutting up our credit cards if necessary. Don’t become a slave to money. Learn to trust God in everything. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-04

Giving

Give and it will be given to you...For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you (lk6:38). Generosity doesn’t come naturally to me (and maybe you too), or not at least the kind of generosity the Bible urges us to have. Most of us will gladly give if we think the cause is good enough or if we can afford it. But the Bible urges us to go beyond that: we are to give sacrificially to God’s work. God’s work demands prayer, dedication, vision, and reliance on the Holy Spirit. But it also requires our financial resources. Never forget: everything we have has been given to us by God. It is true we may have worked hard for it, but God has given us the abilities and has us in a society where it is possible to become prosperous. We are to put God first in everything-including our finances. Jesus gave His all for us; dare we do anything less for Him? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-03

Do not be afraid

Do not be afraid (mt28:10). We live in a world shaken by fear, apprehension and anxiety. What is the answer to our stifling fear? After Jesus’ death, the disciples gathered in fear. But suddenly they found themselves in the presence of their living Lord, and His first worlds to them were: “Peace to you’ (lk24:36). The answer to our personal fears are found in a personal faith in the living, glorified Lord. The answer to our collective fear is a corporate faith in the living, glorified Lord. The answer to our national and international tensions and fears is for the world to know Him who is alive forever. We don’t worship a dead Christ, we worship a risen Christ. He has broken the power of sin and death and Hell and is alive forever. Why, then, should we live in fear? Have a blessed day.

2018-08-02

When you are tested

When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold (job23:10). Our afflictions can be a means of refining and or purification. Just as ore has to pass through the refiners furnace before it can yield us its gold, so our lives must sometimes pass through God’s furnace of affliction before we can bring forth something beautiful and be of any use to God. Are you facing afflictions, maybe you have been diagnosed with a health issue, maybe someone close to you has passed away. Maybe you have lost your job or are facing some serious family issues. No matter what you are facing afflictions can make us stronger in our faith. It can drive us back to the right path when we have wandered. David said, “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep Your word”(psm119:67). So, whatever the reason, if (or when) God sends affliction in our direction, take it in faith as a blessing, not a curse. Have a blessed day.

2018-08-01

Jesus will return

This same Jesus...will so come in like manner as you saw Him go (acts1:11). The resurrection of Christ is the key to God’s plan for the future. Because if Christ was never risen from the dead, there can be no future Kingdom and no returning King. Death and sin would still reign and redemption remains unfulfilled. But praise God, Christ has risen. As His disciples stood watching Him ascend into Heaven, the angel assured them that Christ would someday be returning. “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven” (acts1:11). We don’t know when Christ will return, but we do know that He will, it could be today or a hundred years from now. But we know that when He does every promise- without exception- will be fulfilled. Will we be ready for His return? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-31

A generous soul

The generous soul will be made rich (pro11:25). The Bible teaches us that blessings follow those who give liberally. “The generous soul will be made rich, and he who waters will also be watered himself” (pro11:25). Not everyone likes to talk about their money, in fact some people get angry when you mention money to them. Sometimes it becomes worse when asked to give. But the Bible tells us that giving is one area in which God invites us to test Him. When or if we dare to test God in this area, we discover what countless others have discovered: we can not out give God! So what keeps so many from giving God our tithe (one tenth)? Is it selfishness, fear, insecurity, or maybe sin? No matter the reason turn away (repent) from it, and discover the blessing of generosity. And remember: “God loves a cheerful giver”(2cor9:7). Will we be that cheerful giver? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-30

The Good Shepherd

The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep (jn10:11). One of the figures of speech Jesus applied to Himself is that of a shepherd. He said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep... I know my sheep and my sheep knows me” (jn10:11-12,14). Note these things about Jesus (the Good Shepherd). He owns the sheep; they belong to Him. He guards the sheep; He never abandons them when danger approaches. He knows the sheep; He calls them by name and they follow Him. He lays down His life for the sheep; their salvation is His primary concern. The Bible tells us, “We are His people and the sheep of His pasture”(psm100:3). Because we belong to Christ, we can be secure and at rest. Are you following the Good Shepherd? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-29

Peace of God

Let the peace of God rule in your hearts (col3:15). Science has confirmed what the Bible has taught for centuries: there is a close relationship between our minds and bodies. “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones”(prov17:22). There is also a close relationship between our physical, mental, and spiritual health as well. Guilt, fear, jealousy, bitterness, futility, and escapism- these are just a few spiritual ill’s brought about by sin. Like poison, they can sicken us in body and mind. When we come to Christ, He removes our guilt and takes away our fear. He gives us love for others and a new purpose in life. This doesn’t mean all of our physical or emotional ills will go away. But like a fresh spring of pure water, God’s peace in our heart will give us cleansing and refreshment to our minds and bodies. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-28

Never stop praying

We... do not cease to pray for you (col1:9). Have you ever prayed for someone’s salvation- I mean really prayed for them? Maybe you have prayed for years and nothing happened (maybe even that person instead of being drawn to God they have somehow gotten farther away). But just when you were at the point of giving up praying for that person they excepted Christ. What a wonderful feeling we have when we know that our loved one will join us in Heaven. How thankful we will be that we didn’t stop praying. The Bible tells us to, “Pray without ceasing”(1thes5:17). This should be the motto of every true follower of Jesus Christ. Never stop praying (you maybe the only one praying for your loved one) no matter how dark or hopeless our case may seem. Our responsibility isn’t to tell God when He must act or even how He must act. Our responsibility is to simply to “pray without ceasing” and trusting that God to answer according to His perfect will- not ours. Have you stopped praying for someone’s salvation; please don’t stop, trust in God’s timing, not ours. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-27

Forgiven

I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more (jer31:34). What a wonderful promise God has presented to us. God has promised to forget ALL our sins. Not just the ones we can remember... even the ones we don’t remember. For me, I have trouble remembering where I put stuff let alone remembering all my sins. I believe we can not have true happiness in our lives until we have established a friendship and fellowship with God. And there is no way to establish this fellowship apart from the cross of Jesus Christ. It is only through Christ’s death on the cross can we be forgiven and reconciled to God. It is only when we leave our sins at the foot of the cross can our hearts be open to God’s redeeming (buying back) grace. And this is where God begins to remember our sins no more. So the question has to be asked... have you left everything at the foot of the cross? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-26

Are you a slugglered

The sluggers craving will be the death of him, because he has refused to work (prov:21:25). Webster defines “sloth” as a cure fuzzy animal, but also it’s a “disinclination to action or labor, sluggishness, laziness, idleness.” Theoretically speaking “sloth” carries not only the idea of laziness in spiritual things, but also apathy or inactivity in our daily lives. A slothful person is like a piece of driftwood floating effortlessly down stream. Likewise, a drifting slothful soul inevitably moves towards eternal destination. The sin of doing nothing- the sin of omission- is just a dangerous as any sin of action- of commission. We don’t have to do anything to be lost (just do nothing). Unfortunately, many of us are slothful about our prayer time, worshipping, reading our bibles, witnessing, helping others in need or giving to charity. A stubborn, slothful spirit is a great hinderance to receiving Christ’s forgiveness and transforming power. Please don’t let it overcome you. Bless you!

2018-07-25

A fools anger

A fool gives full vent to his anger (pro29:11). All of us have gotten angry from time to time. A baby cave have a tantrum because it doesn’t like it’s dinner. A small child can ruin a family gathering. A mom can lose her temper and wound her child’s heart. A dad can get angry and scare his family. Homes can be destroyed, business relationships and friendships can be shattered by our anger. Anger causes murder, assaults and many a conflicts. It brings out the animal nature in us. Anger hinders our Christine testimony and causes people to lose their joy of living. But too many of us excuse our anger by blaming our natural disposition, the bottom line is that anger is sin. Can we find victory over this sin? First we have to want to get rid of it. Next comes confession, then comes yielding to God. Our God has the ability to calm the raging storms of the Sea of Galilee, He is more than capable to calm the tempestuous sea of our anger with His love. But will we be will to let Him?

2018-07-24

The proud of heart

The Lord detests all the proud of hearts. Be sure of this : They will not go unpunished (prov16:5). God does not hate a healthy self-respectful or the legitimate sense of personal dignity type of pride we have for ourselves. But it is the haughty, undue self-esteem out of proportion; the repugnant egotism; that revolting conceit that is swaggered before both God and men which is hated. But pride can (and does) take many forms. Spiritual pride trusts in one’s own virtue rather than in the Grace of God. Intellectual pride give it processor self-confidence rather than God-confidence. Pride in processions enthroned self and displaces God; secondary things are exalted to the place of first important. Social pride shows itself in arrogance and status. But all forms of pride start with a haughty human heart and it is this sin that God hates most. So what can we do about it? Confess your pride, humble yourself in the sight of God, and look to Christ and the example He has set for us-even to death. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-23

If God is for us...

If God be for us, who can be against us? (Rms8:31). It has been said that we have become a nation of cowards. Many people today have become reluctant to follow a course if it isn’t popular. And I would have to agree. Even if we know a certain path to be right, we are afraid of the consequences. But if the odds are in our favor, maybe we will take a stand. How different we are from the early Christians. From one end of the Roman Empire to the other the early Christians boldly proclaimed the gospel of Christ, even in the face of hostility, persecution, scorn and even death. But the apostle Paul knew the key when he penned: “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind”(2tm1:7). We may never face the same dangers as the early Christians, but don’t be one of those who takes the high ground, don’t give in to fear. Remember: “If God is for us, who can be against us?” Have a blessed day.

2018-07-22

Trials

Through God we will do valiantly (psm108:13). Trials, no one likes when we are in the center of them. But I believe there are two ways to get out of a trial. One is to simply try to get rid of the trial and be thankful when it is over (you know grin and bear it). The other is to recognize the trial as a challenge from God to claim a larger blessing. Sometimes God removes our trials, and that’s not a bad thing, and it’s not wrong for us to ask Him to. But more often that doesn’t happen, so we should accept our trials and ask God to teach us from them. “God will not permit and trouble to come upon us, unless He has a specific plan by which great blessings can come out of the difficulty”(P.Marshall). When we are suffering, through our trials never forget: “When God tests you, it is a good time for you to test Him by putting His promises to the proof, and claiming from Him just as much as your trials have rendered necessary “(AB Simpson). Have a blessed day.

2018-07-21

The life of the Son

The Son gives life to whom He will (jn5:21). The very moment that we come to Christ, the Spirit of God (Holy Spirit) brings the life of God into us, and we begin to live. We begin to live with a capital “L.” There is a spring in our step, a joy in our souls, and a new found peace in our hearts. We take on a new outlook on life, now that the Holy Spirit of God has been implanted within us, we are now eternal. But I am sorry to say too many of us let ourselves get bogged down by the cares and the routine of daily living. Sometimes we let ourselves get discouraged and overwhelmed by the trials and challenges of life- getting us off track from the the very things God has called us to do. Please don’t let this happen. Understand that the things of this world- good or bad- are not faced alone. Please don’t let Satan convince us otherwise. Ask our powerful God to help us to live each day with eternity in view. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-20

Love the Lord

Love the Lord your God with all your heart... and Love your neighbor as yourself (lk10:27). Do you know that the religious leaders in Jesus’ time had more than 600 man-made laws that were required to obey? The people couldn’t keep all those laws; it was impossible. Yet the rulers believed that those laws had to be kept in order to win God’s favor. But Jesus summed up God’s laws with only two commands: Love the Lord your God and Love your neighbor. Jesus used a special all-encompassing word for love, a word that includes everyone. It doesn’t matter who your neighbor is: next door, next town, next state, next country- we are to love them. The gospel of Christ has no meaning unless it is applied to those who are in need. The Greek word for love that Jesus used implies action. It is not a passive word; it is a word of action. We are to love by our actions. What love actions will you show others today? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-19

The love of money

What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul (mk8:36). The Bible doesn’t condemn money or even material possessions. Money and possessions can do great good when they are used wisely and kept in proper perspective. God’s quarrel is not with material goods, it is with material gods. Materialism has become the god of too many of us, our things are elevated to the same level that only God deserves. The Bible tells us that our preoccupation with money is a form of idolatry, and God hates idolatry. The problem, the Bible tells us is not with money itself, but with our love of money: “The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil” (1tim6:10). Please don’t let money or material possessions take God’s rightful place in our lives. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-18

Where’s your fear?

Fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him (deut10:12b). The Bible tells us, “Fear not, for I am with thee (gen26:24). But it also tells us, “Fear the Lord.” If the Bible says, “Fear not” and yet it also say “Fear the Lord” which does it mean? Both. Fear is a two-fold word. It refers to an emotion marked by dread and anxious concern. But it also means awe and wonder and profound reverence. The later is the fear that inspires trust and confidence, this is the kind of fear we are to have. Our fear causes us to treat God with respect and trust. It is a reverence that comes from seeing the majesty and holiness and power of our loving Heavenly Father. There is no shame in being afraid. We are all afraid from time to time. But there is a interesting paradox here, in that if we truly fear God with all our heart, then we have nothing to fear. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-16

Casting your cares

Casting your care upon Him, for He cares for you (1pt5:7). I have been told that the French transaction of our verse for today is “Unloading your distresses upon God.” Have you eve seen a dump truck get rid of it’s load? The driver just pushes a button or pulls a lever, and the heavy load is discharged at the right location (don’t you wish it was that easy for us to unload the burdens we carry). The dump truck would be of no use it it carried its heavy load forever (just as we are of no use to God when we carry all of our burdens). We were never meant to be crushed under the weight of care. We can push our button of faith or pull our lever of trust, and can place our burden upon the shoulders of Him who said He would gladly bear it for us. Unload the anxieties we are carrying on Him because He cares for us. If He loves us enough to take away the burden of our sin, shouldn’t we trust Him to take away every lesser burden as well? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-15

Where’s your joy?

My soul shall be joyful in the Lord (psm35:9). When Jesus Christ is the source of our joy,(not to be confused with happiness) no words can describe it. Is is a joy “inexpressible and glorious”(1pt1:8). Christ is our answer to the sadness and discouragement, the discord and division in our world. He can take the discouragement and despondence out of our lives (if we let Him) and replace them with optimism and hope. If our hearts have been attuned to God through our abiding faith in Christ, the result will be joyous optimism and good cheer. The reason? Because we know He loves us and that nothing (NOTHING) “shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”(rms8:39). When our confidence is in our Lord, discouragement gets crowded out! Can this be said of us? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-14

Sin Will Find You Out

You may be sure that your sin will find you out (numbers32:23). We know that there can be pleasure in sin (we don’t need the Bible to tell us). But sin’s pleasure is only for a season (heb11:25). Then it’s over, leaving us bitter, and finally destroying us. A day of reckoning always comes. No one has ever escaped the payment of sin. In Luke 15, we read about the story of the prodigal son (who learned things the hard way). The son was raised in a wonderful home with parents who worshipped God, who loved their children and raised them right. But the prodigal son left home, wasted his inheritance on foolish and sinful things (he eventually paid the price). He finally found himself living and eating with the pigs. Showing just how low he had sank... before he headed back home. Please do not let your sin hake you to the pigpen- turn away from your sin and return to our Heavenly Father today-He wants to welcome you home. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-13

What is God forging in your life?

Stand fast in the Lord (phil4:1). A raw bar of steel can be purchased for a few dollars. But when that same bar of steel has been thrust into a fire and processed, when it has been tempered and forged and made into a tiny watch spring for an expensive watch, it is worth thousands. Fire and the skilled hand of the master artisan made the difference, enhancing its value. Just as the sun by its heat and light performs a thousand miracles day in the plant kingdom, God through the refining fire of His Spirit, performs a thousand of miracles each day in the spiritual realm. The Spirit’s regeneration power can take the dull and ordinary things of our lives (even the burnt-out ashes of our past) and forges them into something useful, even beautiful, for His purpose. What is God forging in your life? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-12

The Future Belongs to the Kingdom of God

Your throne, O God, is forever and ever (psm45:6). Many intellectuals ask where is history going. Will society get better and better- or will we end up destroying ourselves? Christ prayed, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in Heaven”(mt6:10). Someday that prayer (a prayer that we often pray) is going to be answered. The last chapter of history will not be written by any human leader, however good or bad. Only God will write it. And write it He will! Someday, when we stand at the edge of the abyss of self-destruction, God will intervene. It may be tomorrow or a thousand years form now. But the outcome is certain; the future (our future) belongs to the Kingdom of God. Never forget: if you belong to the King, you are on the winning side. Have a blessed day.

2018-07-10

Discover the Living Word

All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal (psm119:160). When we were young, our parents told us not to believe everything we read. You know, just because it’s on the internet doesn’t make it true! But why should we believe the Bible? One reason is that it tells about real people and real events. The Bible’s stories have a ring of truth about them, because they actually happen. We can trust the Bible because it was written by people who actually witnessed what took place and wrote it down so future generations would have an accurate record of events. Most of all, we can trust the Bible because it points us to the most important event in human history: the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Through the written Word we discover the Living Word- Jesus Christ. Have you discovered the Living Word? Have a blessed day.

2018-07-09

Ask... Seek...Knock.

Ask, and it will be given; seek and you will find (mt7:7). Children (as any parent will tell you) are not shy about asking for things (mom...mom...mommy!). But God has said to His children (us),”Let us...come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need”(heb4:16). God knows that we are dependent on Him for life’s necessities. And it is for this reason that Jesus said, “Ask... seek...knock (mt7:7). So the question needs to be asked,”What is troubling you today?” Is your heart burdened because of some problem(s) that threatens to overcome you? Maybe you are filled anxiety and worry wondering what will happen next? Remember: as a child of God through faith in Christ, knowing that He loves us and is able (and willing) to help. Please don’t carry your burden(s) any longer, but bring them “boldly to the throne of grace”- and leave it there (which is difficult for us). Have a blessed day!

2018-07-05

Our Fortress

He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust (psm91:2). A refuge is a place safely out of harm's way. A place where we can stay while trouble is upon us. A fortress is a fortified building that is virtually impenetrable by conventional means. Both are place in which God provides for us. Martin Luther had this to say about God: “A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing; Our helper He admist the flood of mortal ills prevailing.” What a wonderful statement about the magnificent power and protection of God. So... the question must be asked, does God really care for us? Can we turn to Him in truth and faith when our world is upside down and we don’t know where to turn next? YES! A thousand times yes. This is a great promise that He gives us. What greater proof do we need than that He sent His only Son, Jesus, to die in our place! Have a blessed day!

2018-07-03

We Are Children of God

You are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus (gal3:26). Being poor in spirit means being aware of our spiritual poverty. Being poor in spirit also means being conscious of our constant dependence on God. Children depend on their parents for protection and care. Dependent children spend little time worrying about meals, clothing or shelter. Our children assume (and have a right to) that all will be provided by their parents. When we come to Christ, we become children of God, and we can trust our Heavenly Father to provide for us. We must admit we are poor before we can be made rich. We must admit we are destitute before we can become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. “The first link between my soul and Christ is... not my riches but my need”(Spurgeon). Have a blessed day.

2018-07-02

Are You Spiritually Poor?

Blessed are the poor in spirit (mt5:3). To most of us these words sound like a contradiction, how can being “poor in spirit” lead us to blessings? This happens when we realize we are poor in in spirit, we become aware of our spiritual poverty (there is nothing more pathetic than a person who is in great need and is not aware of it). Only God can satisfy our souls emptiness- our deepest longings, our desires, and appetites- but not everyone understands this and turns to God. We are wise when we openly confess our lack of spiritual wealth and in humility cry out to “God, be merciful to me a sinner! (Lk18:13). In God’s economy spiritual emptiness comes before filling and spiritual poverty before riches. Happiness, Jesus said comes from admitting our spiritual poverty, and the asking Him to come into our lives. Have you done this? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-30

No Trouble Can Destroy Us

My flesh and my heart fail; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever (psm73:26). Trouble will not hurt us unless it does what many of us too often allow it to do- hardens us, makes us sour, bitter, and skeptical. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The troubles we bear with trust in our Savior can bring a fresh vision of God. We must learn to trust God with a childlike dependence on Him as our loving Father, and no trouble can destroy us (it may knock us down a bit). In those darkest hours before the crucifixion, Jesus could still say, “l am not alone, because the Father is with Me”(jhn16:32). The same can be true with us as we face trying times ahead of us. Even in our darkest hours of death, when our flesh and our heart fail, we will be able to depend in peace upon Him who “is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” Can this be truly be said of us? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-29

I Know it Works

I know whom I have believed (2tim1:12). Does Christianity really work? Does anything happen when a person repents (turns away) of sin and receives Christ by faith? I can only tell you that it works in my life. The household I grew up in, was not filled with love. My father was an alcoholic who abused us verbally and physically. But at the age of nine I gave my heart to Christ. I wish I could say I lived for Christ, but I didn’t. My life didn’t reflect Christ until my later twenties. But one night Christ did get my attention and He began to draw me to Him. I started seeking God’s will not mine. Nope, I didn’t become perfect (I’m still working on that), but my life was changed. I have been to lots of places, and I have never met anyone who has regretted giving their life to Christ (not even when time gets tough), and neither will you. Have a blessed day!

2018-06-27

Have You Committed to Christ?

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord’ shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven will enter in” (Mt7:21). Did you know that the word “Christian” actually means “a partisan for Christ”? It means you have chosen Christ and are following Him. Partisans are not neutral-they are committed. So now I want to ask: Are you a Christian? I mean a true Christian, a real Christian? Many people have the wrong idea of what a Christian is. They may say, “A Christian is a person who prays” or “A Christian lives by the golden rule.” But praying and living by the golden rule doesn’t make someone a Christian. A person may be sincere, but it doesn’t make them a Christian. So l ask again, are you a Christian? Has they ever been a place and time that you can remember confessing you sins and your need for forgiveness to Christ, and have you committed yourself to Him as your Lord and Savior? If not you can. Have a blessed day!

2018-06-26

Giving is a Command

Give, and it will be given to you (lk6:38). Give, Christ commands us. Yet this is more than just a command. It is an invitation to glorious and abundant living. If we get our attitude toward money right, it will help strengthen out almost every other area of our lives. Have you ever stop to realize just how cruel and deceptive a master money can be? Some people spend their entire lives slavishly serving it- often without- even realizing it. No wonder Jesus warned, “You cannot serve both God and Money” (mt6:24). The chief motive of the selfish, unregenerate person is “get.” The chief motive for the dedicated Christian should be “give.” Jesus said, “Give, and it will be given to you.” This is Christ’s promise to us and we know He never breaks His promises. Getting... or giving? Which is true of us? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-25

Our Name are Written

Only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life (will enter the glory of Heaven) (rev21:27). We will never be good enough to get into Heaven on our own. The reason is because God is pure and holy, and even one sin- just one- is enough to keep us out of Heaven. God doesn’t take our good deeds and our bad deeds and weigh them against each other (like some think). It is for this reason we need Christ. He came into our world to take away our sins. We cannot remove our own sin and guilt- but Christ can, because He is the sinless Son of God. When we come by faith to Christ, ALL our sins are transferred to Him, and we are forgiven. Our names are written in God’s Book of Life because of Christ. We can’t trust our own goodness- but we can trust in Christ- are we trusting Him alone for our salvation? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-24

We Have a Helper.

I will pray to the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He May abide with you forever (jn14:16). The Holy Spirit of God is given to every believer- not for just a small amount of time, but forever. If the Holy Spirit left us for even a moment, we would be in deep trouble. But He doesn’t. He is with us to give us both the gift and the power to work for Christ. The Holy Spirit is with us to give us the strength in our moments of temptations (which assaults us daily). He is with us to produce the fruit of “love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (gal5:22-23). We will never have more of the Holy Spirit than we do right now. But will He have more of us? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-23

Life Minus Love Equals Nothing

All the law is fulfilled in one word... “Love your neighbor as yourself (gal5:14). Suppose I gave all that I have to charity. You might say I was a very good person, maybe even a fine Christian. But the apostle Paul said that unless I acted out of love, “I am nothing” (1cor13:2). “Life minus love equals nothing” (G.Sweeting). Do we have this kind of love- a love that puts others first? Without Christ in our hearts, without the Holy Spirit in our lives, we cannot produce this love. Only God can give us a selfless love for others, as the Holy Spirit changed us from within. This is one reason we must receive Christ, for apart from His Spirit we can never be freed from the chains of selfishness, jealousy and indifference. Will others see Christ’s love in our lives today, or will they just see us? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-22

Patience is Critical

As God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience (col3:12). Look at the list of five things that we should be part of our Christian character: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Which do you think is the hardest for us? Each character trait strikes a hard blow at our selfishness. But for most of us, I think patience is the hardest (I might be wrong, but I doubt it). Our patience is tested everyday, maybe even every hour, in many different ways. But our patience is critical, for without it, the other four- compassion, kindness, humility, and gentleness are impossible. So when (if not now, it will later) impatience threatens to overwhelm us, ask God to take it away and replace it with His patience. Remember: God’s patience with us is beyond measure! Have a blessed day.

2018-06-21

Teach Us Prayer

Lord, teach us to pray (lk11:1). Thousands pray only in times of great stress, danger, or uncertainty. It is instinctive for us to pray in times of trouble. It is only then do we realize our helplessness. Jesus, by His teachings and His example instructed His followers to pray at all times. So fervent were Jesus’ prayers that after He finished praying, His followers pleaded, “Lord, teach us to pray.” They yearned to with God in the same way they knew Christ to be. Have you ever said, “Lord, teach me to pray”? Our prayers should not be casual or sporadic, or dictated only by the needs of the moment. Our prayers should be as much a part of our lives as breathing. Never has our world stood in greater need of people who will pray. Will you be one of them? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-20

Grow in Grace

Grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2pt3:18). So, how do we grow spiritually? We do this by studying God’s Word. We will never grow in grace and knowledge of God until our Bible becomes part of our lives every day. We also grow through prayer. We should be praying continually, in every choice we make, asking God is, “This the way, walk he in it”(isa30:21). We grow through our fellowship with other believers. Through worship, through hearing His Words preached and taught, through interaction with mature believers- in other words we need each other to grow. The last thing we should be doing is witnessing. Just as exercise makes us physically strong, so exercising our faith by sharing it with others makes us spiritually strong. So can it be said of us that we are sharing the story of Christ’s love? Make it our goal beginning today- to grow closer to Christ. Have a blessed day.

2018-06-18

His Way is Perfect.

As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless (psm18:30). Have you ever thought how important it is that God is perfect? What if God make mistakes or failed to keep His promises, or did only did things half way, occasionally told a lie, or slipped up and forgot to do what He said He would do- you know things that we often do (or fail to do)? If God were this way, then why bother to trust Him? Why bother to worship Him? But God isn’t like this! God is perfect- ABSOLUTELY- totally perfect in all He is and all He does. And because He is perfect, we can trust Him. We can trust His love, and we can trust His promises. We can trust Him to guide us, and we can trust Him in life’s darkest times, as well as the good times. But most of all we can trust Him with our souls- because of Christ’s saving power. Because His way of salvation is perfect. So are we trusting our imperfect lives to our perfect God? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-16

In But Not Of

They are of the world... we are of God (1jhn4:5-6). The Gulf Stream flows in the ocean, and yet it is not absorbed by it. It maintains its warm temperatures even in the icy waters of the North Atlantic. Believers are in the world, yet we must not be absorbed by it. If we are to fulfill our purpose in the world, we must not be chilled by the indifferent, godless society in which we live. The Bible tells us, “Do not be conformed to this world” (rms12:2). Yes, Jesus dined with the loss, but He never allowed them to overwhelm Him or to conform to their ways. Instead, He seized every chance to present spiritual truth and to lead them from death to life. Our social contacts should not only be pleasant; they should be opportunities to share the gospel. As we contact with others today, will they sense the warmth of Christ in us? Have a blessed day!

2018-06-15

Be Content

I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content (phil4:11). Can this be truly said of us, popularity and praise can be far more dangerous for us than persecution, because it can turn us away from God without us even knowing it. Unfortunately, it is easy when all goes well to lose our perspective. So, we must learn like Paul to be content in whatever state we may find ourselves. The most important thing we can have is one consuming passion: to please Christ. That way when things happen (good, bad, or indifferent), we know that He has permitted it to take place to teach us and perfect us for His service. He will enrich us and perfect us for His service. He will enrich our circumstances whether they are good or unfortunate, by His presence with us. Ask God to help us from worrying about what others think and make us content with whatever He sends our way. Remember: ALL of our tomorrow’s have to pass before Him before they get to us. Have a blessed day!

2018-06-14

Nothing Separates Us from His Love

Be faithful even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life (rev2:10). Shadrach, Meshrach, and Abednego were Jewish captives in Babylon- that refused to bow down and worship the golden image of King Nebuchadnezzar. They could have bowed and avoided trouble, but that would have compromised all that they believed. They could have rationalize their actions, but they had a higher law: God’s law. Instead they risked the tyrants rage, they proclaimed, “We take our stand for the living God, even if it means death.” Then they were thrown into the fiery furnace, but God delivered them. God is with His people in fiery furnace of life- in times of temptation, trouble and trials. The Bible tells us that nothing-ABSOLUTELY NOTHING- “shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (rms8:39). Have a blessed day.

2018-06-13

How Do We Show Gratitude?

No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly (psm84:11). In the midst of this world’s sorrow and troubles, our lives have many blessings and enjoyments (we may not see or realize them) that come from the hand of God. Think of the many blessings we so easily take for granted: life itself; safety from danger; the health we enjoy; the liberty we have; our ability to see, hear, speak, think and imagine- all of these and more come from the very hand of God. For that matter our capacity to love is a gift from God. But most of all God has given us the gift of Christ. So, what should our response be? It can be summed up in one word: gratitude... How can we show our gratitude? This can be done by giving back to God a part of what He has given to us. What have we done lately to show our gratitude to God for all that He has done- is doing- and will do in our lives? Have a blessed day!

2018-06-12

Be Alert

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in your faith (1pt5:8-9). No Christian is exempt from the attacks of Satan. Our adversary is personal, aggressive, intelligent, cunning, and destructive and everyday Satan must be resisted. Our earthy weapons are useless against his schemes and attacks. Our greatest hindrance for Satan’s destructive efforts is our standing strong in the knowledge and fear of the Lord. Our greatest contributions to God’s Kingdom work (and to defeating the Enemy’s efforts against this kingdom) is to keep our daily scripture reading: live a clean, honest, humble, Spirit-filled life: trust God to guard and to protect us morally, physically and spiritually and to openly witness for the cause of Christ. Please don’t be a pawn of the devil, but be a servant of Christ. Have a blessed day!

2018-06-11

Free, But Not Cheap.

Come, buy... without money and without price (isa55:1). God does not bargain with us, not can we barter with Him. He holds our eternal salvation in His omnipotent hand, and He bids us take it is a free gift, “without money and without price.” Yet this is hard for most of us to accept. Surely something as precious as salvation must cost us greatly. Surely God must demand we work for it. But this thinking is wrong- and the reason is the price has already been paid. Salvation is free-but it wasn’t cheap. It cost the Son of God His very life. Only cheap, tawdry things have a price tag on them. The best things in life are free- the air we breathe, the stars at night, the wonder of human love. But the greatest gift of all is our salvation, purchased for us by Christ. “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift”(2cor9:15). Have you accepted God’s great gift? Have a blessed day!

2018-06-10

He is Righteous.

Righteous are you, O Lord, And your laws are right (psm119:137). It took sixteen hundred years to write, and more than thirty authors acting as secretaries for God in the writing of it sixty-six books. In it pages the Bible revealed the sins of small and great, which are frankly addressed. The weakness of human nature are admitted and life is presented as it actually is found. The message of the Bible is the story of God’s redemption of humanity through Jesus Christ. And the truth in its pages are practical. “The Bible is a book in comparison with which all others in my eyes are minor importance, and which in all my complexities and distress has never failed to give me light and strength “(R.E.Lee). When we open it pages and apply it principles, we too can find the light and strength we need for each and every day. Have a blessed day!

2018-06-08

Hold the Light

The light of the righteous rejoices (pro13:9). We are holding a light, and we are to let it shine. Though it may seem but a twinkling candle in a world of blackness, it is our business to let it shine. Light dispels darkness, and it attracts those in the darkness to it. We are blowing a trumpet. In the din and noise of battle the sound of our little trumpet may seem lost, but we must keep sounding the alarm for those who are in spiritual danger. We are kindling a fire. In this cold world full of hatred and selfishness our little blaze may seem unavailing, but we must keep it burning. A light, a trumpet, a fire... they all may seem so little amidst the darkness and violence of this world. But remember: “with God all things are possible”(mt19:26), and God will bless our efforts to bring the good news of His Son Jesus to a weary and strife-torn world. Have a blessed day!

2018-06-06

Commit to the Lord

Commit your way to the Lord... and He shall bring it to pass (psm37:5). Most of us know that we cannot stop a baby’s cry with a baby rattle when he is hungry. He will only stop crying when he is fed. Likewise, neither can the soul of a mature person be satisfied apart from God. Two conflicting forces cannot exist in one human heart. When doubt reigns, faith cannot abide. Where hatred rules, Love is crowded out. Where selfishness rules, there love cannot dwell. When worry is present, trust cannot crowd it’s way in. So in this same way God will not share His rightful peace in our lives with anything or anyone less than Himself. Is there anything crowding God out of our heart today? Don’t give first place to anything less than Christ, but “commit your way to the Lord.” Have a blessed day.

2018-06-05

Aim at Heaven.

Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things (col3:2). Continually looking forward to the eternal world Jesus will usher in is not a form of escapism or just wishful thinking. We as Christians look forward with anticipation to Christ’s promised return and us spending eternity with Him. The promise of that new heaven does not mean that we are to leave the present world as it is. If we are to read history, we will find that the Christians who did the most for this present world were those who thought the most of the next. Only Christians who cease thinking of the next would will become ineffective in this one. “Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth, and you will get neither” (C.S.Lewis). So, which one are you aiming for... heaven or earth? Have a blessed day!

2018-06-04

Pray Without Ceasing

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing (1thes5:16-17). Prayer is an essential part of a Christian life. The Bible tells us we are to “Pray without ceasing.” This means more than to repeat a few sentences in the morning. It means to set aside time to be alone with God, speak to Him in prayer and listen to Him speak to us through His Word. My favorite time to talk with God is on my long drive to work (thank goodness it doesn’t look like I’m talking to myself- most think I’m talking to someone on my phone! If we set aside a special time for prayer, our unconscious mind will be saturated with prayer all day long. For the overworked, busy person, this may seem impossible- but even a few minutes alone with God in prayer can reap big rewards. The great thing about prayer is that we can “pray without ceasing” in our hearts and minds. We can pray anywhere, anytime- God is always willing and ready to hear us! So, today let prayer saturate your life “without ceasing.” Have a blessed day!

2018-06-03

Conscience is the Lamp of the Eternal

If your heart is wise, My heart will rejoice (pro23:15). One of the ways God has revealed Himself to us is in the conscience. The conscience has been described as the light of the soul. Even when it is dulled or darkened by sin, it can still bear witness to good and evil, and to the holiness of God. What causes this warning light to go on inside us when we do wrong? It is our conscience, given by God to steer us away from evil and toward good. Our conscience can be a gentle teacher and friend and at time our worst enemy (or so we think so) when we sin. The Bible tells us, “Man’s conscience is the lamp of the eternal” (pro20:27). Persistent sin can dull and even silence our conscience. But on the other hand, persistent attention to God’s Word will sharpen our conscience and make us more sensitive to moral and spiritual danger. Which of these can be said of our lives? Have a blessed day.

2018-06-01

Are We Concerned?

Woe to him who is alone, when he falls, for He has no one to help him up (eccl4:10). When we commit our lives to Christ, we are no longer alone, not just because Christ is always with us, but we also become part of His family. We live our lives differently from those who do not know Christ. As a believer our goal is to follow Christ. This means sometime being scorned by family or friends (been there, done that), or it could mean taking a stand for what is right instead of what is popular. We are part of something bigger then ourselves. We become part of the family of Christ, part of His church. Instead of being concerned only about ourselves, we become concerned about others in the family of Christ and their needs. We become concerned too about those who do not yet know Christ. Are theses concerns becoming a reality in your life, if not why? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-30

Not Just Forgive & Forget

Love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you (mtt5:44). We’ve heard the expression; “Forgive & forget”- is it really possible? Maybe someone has hurt you, and the emotional scars still ache. The last thing we'd ever want to do is forgive & forget. I know I have! But Christ is not only telling us to forgive & forget, He wants us to love the very one who has hurt us, and pray for that person’s welfare. We aren’t to erase them from our memories; but keep them in our prayers. How can we do this? First, we must remember how generously Jesus forgave us. We've hurt God for more than anyone has hurt us- yet He willingly sent Christ to die in our place- that we can be forgiven. Second, see the person who has hurt you through God’s eyes. He loves them as much as He loves us. Please don’t hold your hurt any longer, but turn it over to Christ and let Him help you forgive others. I know it seems impossible and might take awhile, but when it's said and done it'll be well worth it!

2018-05-29

Cast Your Cares Upon Him

As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him (psm103:13). As a child of God, we are His dependents. Just as our own children spend little time worrying about meals, clothing or even shelter. They assume that we as parents will provide everything they need. Jesus said “Do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ Or ‘What shall we drink?’ Or ‘What shall we wear?’... But seek first the kingdom of God... and all these things shall be added to you” (mt6:31,33). But for most of us worry is an ingrained habit, but because we are God’s children, He is responsible for our welfare. It is for this reason we should be “casting all our cares upon Him, for He cares for us (1pt5:7). In other words- let God do the worrying. After all, He tells us, “I’ll take the burden-don’t give it a thought- leave it to Me.” Never forget: God is bigger than our problems. So, whatever worries that are pressing on us today- put them in God’s hands- and leave them there! Have a blessed day!

2018-05-28

The Spirit Dwells with You.

The Spirit of truth... dwells with you and will be in you (jhn14:17). There is a story of a little boy who recently received Christ and he asked his father a question, “Daddy, how can I believe in the Holy Spirit when I have never seen Him?” The father replied, “Let me show you how.” The father took his son to a power plant and showed the son the huge power generators. “This is where the power comes from to heat our stove and give us light,” “We can’t see the power but it’s in the machine and the power lines.” Now let me ask you a question the father said to the son: “Do you believe in electricity?” The son said, “Yes I believe in electricity.” ‘Of course you do”,said the father, “But you don’t believe in it because you see it. You believe in it because you see what it can do. Likewise you can believe in the Holy Spirit, not because you see Him, but you see what He does in peoples lives when they surrender to Christ. So, I have to ask, “Where does our power lie?” Have a blessed day.

2018-05-27

Forgive as You are Forgiven

Bear with each other and forgive whatever’s grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you (col3:13). The command to forgive as we have been forgiven is difficult to do at best. We should forgive those who have wronged us- even when we don’t think they deserve it. If not, the poisons of anger and bitterness will eat away at our souls. So how do we get started? First, if we are to blame in any way we need to face it and seek God’s forgiveness. Next, we need to ask the person to forgive us as well- even if they refuse. Our next step is to ask God to help us to forgive the ones who have hurt us. This can only be done when we realize how fully God has forgiven us in Christ. We don’t deserve His forgiveness, yet we are “justified freely by His grace” (rms3:24). Open your heart to Christ and then ask Him to replace your hurt and anger with His love - and He will. Have a blessed day!

2018-05-26

Filled with the Holy Spirit

They were filled with the Holy Spirit (acts2:4). The early Christians had no buildings, no airplanes, no cars, no printing presses, no TV’s, nor radios. They had nothing of the modern luxuries that we do, yet they turned their world upside down for Christ. They started a spiritual revolution that shocked to the core of the Roman Empire. In the face of opposition and overwhelming odds they stayed courageous, bold, dauntless and full of faith. They lived their lives everyday for Christ, no matter what others thought. They suffered scorn, persecution and even death for their faith. What was their secret? Scripture gives us the key: “They were filled with the Holy Spirit.” The Holy Spirit changed their lives so that those they met could not help but to be impressed by their love and the purity of their lives. So, I have to ask- what keeps us from turning our world upside down for the cause of Christ? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-25

Are You Bearing Fruit?

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit (jn15:5). How we live at home is the acid test for any Christian. It is far easier to live an excellent life among our friends when we are putting our best foot forward, than it is to live for Christ in our home. Our family sees us as we are, flaws and all. They see us when we are exhausted and stressed to the max. They know whether Christ truly lives in and through us. If we are genuine Christians we will not give way to bad tempers, impatience, faultfinding, sarcasm, unkindness, suspension, or selfishness. Instead, we will display the fruit of the Spirit, which are “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” (gal5:22). How different would our homes be if we consistently practiced these Christian virtues? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-24

The Joy of Christ

Rejoice in the Lord always (phil4:4). When our hearts are surrendered totally to the will of God, then we delight in seeing Him use us in any way He sees fit. Our plans and desires begin to agree with His, and we accept His direction in our lives. Our sense of joy (not happiness, two different things), satisfaction and fulfillment in life increases, NO matter what the circumstances, if we are in the center of God’s will. The Christian’s life is a joyful life. Christianity was never meant to be something to make people miserable (although there are miserable people). The ministry of Jesus was one of joy. The Bible teaches that a life of inward peace and outward victory is the Christian’s birthright. “What a witness to the world Christians would be if only they were more evidently very happy people” (A.Carmichael). Does the people around us see the joy of Christ in our lives each day? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-23

Wait on the Lord

But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles (isa40:31). Nowhere does the Bible teach us that Christians are exempt from tribulations and natural disasters. We live in a world infected with the disease of sin, and we share in its misery and pain. But the Bible does teach that we can face our trials with a power that others do not have- the power of God. As we trust Him, God helps us to endure, and even discern His purpose in the midst of our sufferings. The eagle has the unique ability to lock its joints and soar effortlessly on an updraft of wind instead of flapping it wings. As we wait on God, He helps us (if we let Him) use the winds of adversity to soar above our problems. As the Bible says, “Those who wait (not all wait) on the Lord... shall mount up with wings like eagles.” Are you waiting? Have a blessed day.

2018-05-21

Who Will You Touch?

Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man (mk1:41). The custom of the day was when someone was afflicted with leprosy they had to call out “unclean” so to warn others that he was near. I wonder how long it had been since this man had felt a human touch- a nice hug, a pat on the back or a simple hand shake? Christ knew the man needed relief, but before Christ healed the man’s physical needs, He healed the man’s emotional pain. Jesus simply reached out and touched the man- one simple jester. In doing this one simple act Jesus, not only healed the man of his leprosy, but Christ also touched the man’s emotional needs as well. In His actions Christ is teaching us by example that the best way to help the oppressed, the ill, or even the poor is to touch them with our compassion. Christ had compassion for those in need; and we should too! Who will you touch- literally and figuratively today for Christ? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-20

His Kingdom

The kingdom of God is within you (lk17:21). Too many people think God is to be found by looking within their own self, and they often quote Christ to support their claims. But Jesus didn’t teach that God is within us, and all we need to do is look inward to find Him. Instead, Jesus was talking to people who believed that the Messiah would establish an earthly political kingdom- but Jesus said that wasn’t His goal. “My Kingdom is not of this world,” Jesus told Pilate (jn18:36). His goal was (and is) to rule in the hearts of men and women. This is exactly what happens when we give our lives to Christ. When we turn to Him in repentance and faith, He cleanses us of our sins and His Holy Spirit takes up residency within our hearts. In other words- He sets up His kingdom- His rule- within us. I pray that each day that our lives reflect Christ’s kingship over every part of our lives. Have a blessed day .

2018-05-18

Learning Responsibility

The Lord our God we will serve, and His voice we will obey (josh24:24). There is a story that is told of a wealthy father who refused to get his son a bicycle, because the son had a bad report card and he refused to do his chores. As a parent this is not the type of behavior to be rewarded. We are not being cruel or even being stingy; we simply know that our children need to learn responsibility. Likewise, God wants us to learn responsibility. Yes, we are saved by grace-but we are also called to be responsible disciplines, learning to follow Christ by obeying God’s will. The scriptures warns us, “If you do not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you”(1sam12:15). If our desire is for God to hear our prayers, we must surrender our selfishness and stubbornness to Him and then humbly seek His will. Our obedience is the key to effective prayer. Have a blessed day!

2018-05-16

Reprogram Our Minds & Hearts

You are precious and honored in my sight, and ... l love you (isa43:3). One thing a computer manufacturer does is program each computer with a set of instructions, that way it knows how to work. In a sense, we are programmed as well. When we are young our minds, actions and emotions are being programmed by the experiences we have. This happens to all of us, and if we're not careful those things that are bad or untrue- will cause problems later in life. We need to reprogram our minds and hearts; to replace the bad things that have taken root there with good and true things. This is where God can help. In His Word, He provides truths to replace the lies we believe about ourselves. When we open our heart to Christ, He begins to help us see ourselves the way He sees us. But Satan will battle against these new memories (or reprogramming). Remember: Christ loves us more than we can ever imagine- so when Satan tells us we are not worthy, remind him whom we belong! Have a blessed day!

2018-05-15

Your Heart

Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart (1sam16:7). Did you know our hearts beat 100,000 times every 24hrs? It beats about 4000 times every hour. Our entire blood supply circulates though our heart every 4 minutes. Our hearts are amazing, but when scripture talks about the heart, it is talking about our entire inner being. Our heart is the seat of our emotions, the seat of decisive actions and the seat of belief and doubts. Our heart symbolizes the center of our moral, spiritual and intellectual life, it is our conscience and life. God knows our hearts better than we do. God searches our heart, and weighs our heart by the teachings of the Bible. He opens our heat to His truths, and gives us a new heart when we come to know Christ. Please do not hesitate to take to Him whatever is on your heart- He already knows it anyway, but He does not want you to bear it’s pain or celebrate its joys by yourself. Have a blessed day!

2018-05-14

Look Past the Present

The Son of man will come in the glory of His Father and with angels (mt16:27). Today Christ (physically) is hidden from our view, although the Holy Spirit lives in our hearts. Today is the day of faith as the apostle Paul tell us: “We walk by faith, not by sight”(2cor5:7). Only in the future will we “see Him as He is”(1jn3:2). Christ’s first appearing was quite and almost unnoticed. Oh but His second appear will be much different it will be noticed by all. It will be glorious- He will be accompanied by His angels and He will defeat every enemy. How easily the events in our daily lives crowd out our promise of eternity. The present seems so real (and it is); and the unseen future seem so illusory. But in reality the opposite is true (even if we don’t believe it). Please don’t let the present consume you (no matter how difficult it may be). But instead, “seek those things which are above, where Christ is” (col3:1). Have a blessed day!

2018-05-13

He is Hope, He is Truth

You are my hope, O Lord; You are my trust from my youth (psm71:1). You know I think we still wrestle with the same problems that plagued Plato and Aristotle questions like: Where did we come from? Why are we here? Where are we going? We desperately search for the answer, but it seems that we never find any. But yet the cross of Christ stands against the confusion of our world, a beacon of hope in the midst of all the darkness and doubt. Christ not only bridged the gap between God and us, but there we find the answers to life’s deeper questions. We find our true identity: we are forgiven sinners who now belong to God. We find our true destiny: a eternity with God in Heaven. We also find our true purpose: to love our God and serve with all we have. Never underestimate what Christ did for us, by it our salvation was won and with it our lives and world can be transformed. So what difference has the cross made in your live? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-12

We are His Children

Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God(1jn3:11). When we commit our lives to Jesus as Savior, we become His children. Now, God is responsible for our welfare, we are told to cast ALL our cares and anxieties upon Him (1pt5:7). Our children (by nature) are not shy about asking for things, in fact as parents we encourage this. Understand, God is keenly aware that we are dependent on Him for life’s necessities, so we can freely ask Him for those things. God loves us, He knows our needs and He wants to grant them to us. The Bible tells us, “No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly”(psm84:11). But also as God’s children we are not meant to sit back and selfishly enjoy our privileges, but instead God wants us to serve Him and to help those around us who are in need. Are we trusting our Heavenly Father to provide for us? Are we, boldly asking Him for what we need? Have a blessed day.

2018-05-10

He is Still Working

The day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night (1thes5:2). We who are Christians have no reason to go around wondering what we will do in the face of this worlds present situation. The Bible is very clear that in the midst of persecution, confusion, wars and rumors of wars, that we are to comfort one another with the knowledge that Jesus is coming back in triumph, glory and majesty! But until that day God is still working- and so should we. In this world filled with turmoil, pain and hopelessness, we must pray, and do all we can to alleviate suffering and to bring the soul saving knowledge of Christ’s love to others. May the words of Jesus ring true in ours lives: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven”(mt5:16). Have a blessed day!

2018-05-08

Our Hunger for Him.

My heart and flesh cry out for the living God (psm84:2). Have you ever held your breath under water to see how long you could hold it? The long you held it, the more desperate you became to reach the surface to gasp for a breath of air. You know the longer you are under water the more you want air, you are overwhelmed by the thought of getting to the surface to take that breath of air. That is what it means to long for God, to feel unfulfilled without Him. It means we know we desperately need Him, even more than we need air. God wants us to be satisfied with nothing less than Himself. And we are never more fulfilled than when we know Him. Our hunger to read His Word, to be in prayer, to worship with those who know Him. If you are not doing these things and more ask God to give you a new hunger for Him, so that you may become filled with “the fullness of Christ”(eph4:13). Have a blessed day!

2018-05-07

No Matter What the Future Holds

The Lord shall reign forever(psm146:10). If we only look at the headlines of the day, there is good reason to be pessimistic about the future (all gloom and doom). But in spite of this we must not forget two important things: First, the future is in God's hands, and nothing takes Him by surprise (it might with us). Even when the future seems dark and unhopeful, we can turn to God (who reigns forever) and trust the future (our future) is in His hands. Second, never ever forget that even when the future is unclear, our God is with those who are trusting Christ as our Lord and Savior. The apostle Paul faced great danger, but he could still say “l can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”(phil4:13). So no matter what our future hold or what challenges we are facing now, no matter the direction Christ leads us-no matter what this day holds for us, we do not face it alone-He is with us always! Have a bless day!

2018-05-05

Respond to His Love

He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation (atonement) for our sins (1jn4:10). The word “love” has come to mean so many different things. We may say we “love” our house or we “love” our car or a special vacation spot or maybe that we “love” a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. We may say that we “love” a particular TV show or that we “love” our spouse. But hopefully we don’t love the peanut butter and jelly sandwich the same way we love our spouse! But the greatest love of all, is God’s love for us- a love showed in action. It is said, “Loved talked about is easily ignored, but love demonstrated is irresistible (unkn). The Bible tells us, “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us(rms5:8). Now this is the example of love we need. How are we responding to His love? Have a blessed day!

2018-05-04

Not to Condemn, but to Save

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved (jhn3:17). If someone deliberately commits a crime and is caught, who is the blame if that person is found guilty and sent to jail? Is the judge to blame (as some may think)- or is it the criminal? The lawbreaker is to blame, not the judge. The judge did sentence him, but he (the criminal) alone broke the law. Likewise, when we break God’s law, we stand condemned, and we ourselves are to blame for what happens to us, not God. We can only blame ourselves for the consequences. But we don’t have to pay the penalty for our sins because Christ has already paid it for us. By His death on the cross, He took the punishment we deserve. He suffered judgment and hell for us. Have a blessed day!

2018-05-02

With Us in Trial & Triumph

No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly (psm84:11). I think many times we make the mistake thinking that Christ helps us only when we are in the midst of a trial. But this is not true, Jesus wants to be part of our every experience and every moment of our lives. Jesus went to the Cana wedding as well as to the house of Mary and Martha’s when Lazarus died. The Bible teaches us that Jesus wept with those who wept and rejoiced with the those who rejoiced. “There are just as many stars in the sky at noon as at midnight, although we cannot see them through the sun’s glare” (unknown). I seriously doubt that we will truly understand our trials and adversities until we are safely in Heaven. We will look back and be absolutely amazed at how God took care of us and blessed us, even in the storms of life. God is with us always, and for this we should be grateful. Have a blessed day!

2018-05-01

What’s Done for Christ Will Last

May the glory of the Lord endure forever; May the Lord rejoice in His works (psm104:31). C.T. Studd, a famous Cambridge cricketer and missionary wrote the following statement: “Only one life, twill soon be past: Only what’s done for Christ will last.” Our lives are a glorious opportunity, if it is used to condition us for eternity. If we fail this, but we succeed in everything else, our lives will have been a failure. There is no escape for the person who squanders his opportunity to prepare to meet God. We will never live this day again and none of us are promised a tomorrow. How will you spend this day- living for the temporal things of this chaotic sin infested world or will you spend it living for Christ who is the author of our eternity? Remember: “Only what’s done for Christ will last.” Have a blessed day!

2018-04-30

Be Transformed

Be transformed by the renewing of your mind (rms12:2). The Bible teaches that our minds are to be brought under the control of Christ. If God is to change our lives, He must first change our minds. Our minds can not exist as a vacuum. It will be either filled with good or with evil, with either Christ or carnality. What will make the difference? This depends on us and what we allow to enter into our minds. We must turn our minds away from evil, being careful of the TV programs we watch, the kinds of books we read, and the kinds of things that occupy our thoughts. It isn’t enough to put bad thoughts or bad habits out of our lives, they must be replaced with good thoughts and good habits- thoughts and habits that are shaped by God, by His Word, by prayer, by worship and by fellowshipping with other Christians . We must deliberately turning away from evil thoughts and habits, start by asking God to fill our minds with nothing other than Himself instead of ourselves. Have a blessed day!

2018-04-29

He is Trustworthy

God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man that he should change his mind (num23:19). Can God’s promises be trusted? His promise to be with is in every situation: “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you”(heb13:5). Is this really true? When life turns hard and we can’t see anyway out, when all we sense is darkness- is He still with us? Can His promise really be trusted? Yes- because God cannot and will not lie, nor does He change His mind. But what if He did? Then we would not have any reason to depend on Him; His Word could not be trusted. But He doesn’t lie and He doesn’t change His mind- because He is perfect and holy and He loves us. Maybe your in a time of great discouragement. Know and remember this: God knows your challenges and He can be trusted to be with you. God hasn’t promised that our way will always be smooth and free of problems, but He has promised to be with us- and this should give us great comfort- more than anything. Have a blessed day!

2018-04-28

Shaping Us Down Here

You also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house (1pt2:5). The story has been told of a man who lost his job, his fortune, his wife and home. But he held strong to his faith ind Christ (the only thing he had left). Like Job in the O.T., he wouldn’t abandon God, no matter what. But also like Job, he couldn’t help but wonder why. One day he stopped to watch a man doing stone work on a huge church. The workman was chiseling a triangular piece of stone. The man asked, “What are you going to do with that?” The Workman said, “See that little opening way up there near the spire? Well, I’m shaping this stone down here so it will fit up there.” Tears filled the mans eyes as he walked away, for it seemed that God had spoken through the workman to explain the ordeal through which he was passing: “I’m shaping you down here so you will fit up there.” Know that God is and will continue to shape us till He calls us home! Have a blessed day!

2018-04-27

Honor in Service

If anyone serves Me, Him My Father will honor (jn12:26). People today seek adventure and excitement and more importantly, something to believe in. They want a cause to give themselves to and a flag to follow. Without a purpose greater than ourselves, many know they will end up with empty hearts and meaningless lives. The only cause that is big enough to satisfy the yearning of our hearts- is the cause of Christ. This invitation to discipleship is the most thrilling cause we could ever imagine. Just think of it: the God of the universe invites us to become His partners in reclaiming the world for Him. We can have a part, using the unique gifts and opportunities God has given us. Christ’s call is for us to be His disciples everyday. How are we responding to His call? Have a blessed day! The weekend is only hours away.

2018-04-25

Borrowed Troubles

Let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God... will guard your heart and minds (phil4:6-7). No troubles distress the mind and wears on the nerves like borrowed troubles. “Worry is like an old man with a bent head, carrying a load of feathers he thinks is lead” (unknown). Worrying about what might happen makes even the smallest troubles seem huge. Nervously anticipating troubles that may never happen can crush our spirits. Instead of “borrowing trouble” by always worrying about the future listen instead to Jesus’ promise: “Peace I leave with you, My peace l give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid”(jn14:27). Whatever is worrying you right now, give it Jesus and trust Him to take care of it. Let His peace replace your worries. Have a blessed day!

2018-04-24

Nothing is Hidden

You alone know the hearts of all men (1kg8:39). Do these words scare you? They should because they remind us of a truth we often forget: God knows everything about us, even our deepest thoughts and motives. We can hide them from others; we may even hide them from ourselves. But we can’t hide them from God. The Bible says, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account” (heb4:13). But in spite of all He knows about us, God still loves us. In fact, our verse occurs in a prayer by King Solomon, he was thanking God for His love and forgiveness. We would do right to do the same as King Solomon, thank God for His grace and thank Him that, in spite of all He knows about us in Christ, “He has forgiven (us) all trespasses” (col2:13). Have you taken the time lately to thank God? Have a blessed day.

2018-04-23

Don't be Conformed to this World.

"Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus" (phil2:5). We Christians are not to be conformed to this world. The world by it advertisements and philosophy is engaged in a gigantic brainwashing; it calls us to live for ourselves, to put things and selfish pleasures ahead of God. The world’s sewage system threatens to contaminate the stream of Christian thought. However, above the noise we can hear the voice of Scripture: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God (rms12:2). Time yourself the next time you read the Bible and pray. Compare it to the amount of time you spend watching TV or surfing the internet. Is God getting His share of your time? So is the world shaping your mind- or is it Christ? Have a blessed day!

2018-04-21

Our Future is Assured

Abide in Him, that when He appears, we may... not be ashamed before Him at His coming (1jn2:28). Almost two thousand years ago, Jesus won the decisive battle against sin and Satan, through His death and resurrection. Yet the war still continues, for although Satan is a defeated foe, he is still alive and does everything he can to block God’s work. But when Christ comes again (and He will), the war will be over. His victory over evil will be complete, and Christ will usher in an age in which sin and death will no longer rule, and cruelty and suffering will no longer exist. For those of us who believe in Christ, our future is assured. Tomorrow belongs to us. We await the trumpet announcing His return. So in the meantime let nothing discourage us. Keep our eyes on Christ and live as if He were coming tomorrow. After all, He might! Have a blessed day!

2018-04-19

Nothing But Joy

"Whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy" (Jms1:2). Some of the most godly people I’ve ever met were those who were called to endure great suffering. They could have grown bitter and resentful, yet because they knew Christ and walked in the joy of His presence everyday, God blessed them and turned them into people who reflected Christ. “Suffering and success go together. If you are succeeding without suffering, it is because others before you have suffered; if you are suffering without succeeding, it is that others after you may succeed” (Dr.E Judson). Admittedly it’s hard to “count it all joy” (Jms1:2) when suffering come. But when it does (and it will), ask God to sanctify it and use it to make you steadfast in your faith. Have a blessed day!

2018-04-18

Fervent Prayer

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avail much (Jms5:16). The story has been told that John Knox prayed, and God’s response to his prayer caused Queen Mary to say that she feared the prayers of John Knox more than she feared all the armies of Scotland. John Wesley prayed, and revival came to England, sparing that nation the horrors of the French Revolution. Jonathan Edwards prayed, and revival spread throughout the American Colonies. History has been changed time after time because of prayer. I tell you, history could be changed again if people went to their knees in believing prayer. Not a one time prayer, but the constant on going prayer, as if our lives were on the line (and for some their’s may be). Pray even if times are bleak and the world scorns God, because He still hears the prayers of His people. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-29

The Father's Compassion

"As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him" (psm103:13). Discouragement, hopelessness, despair- so many things can make us feel this way. Problems and struggles can wear us down physically, emotionally and mentally- and can even erode our faith. But God our loving Heavenly Father, understands our feelings at times like these and He wants to help. Life sometimes takes us through hard places that we never expected to be. But even in the midst of them, God is with us (even if we don’t see or feel His presence) and nothing can happen to us that is beyond His ability to help. The Bible tells us to, “rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope”(rms5:3-4). Being joyful may seem hard to us now, but put our hope in Christ and thank Him that He will never abandon us. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-28

Child of Light

"You brethren, are not in darkness...you are all sons of light" (1thess5:4-5). The born again Christian sees life not as blurred, confused, or meaningless but as something planned and purposeful. Our eyes have been opened to the spiritual truth. By nature we are all spiritually blind because of our sin; but the Spirit of God helps us see our sin and our helplessness and shows us God’s redeeming grace in Christ. In the Bible we are called “children of light and children of the day”(1thess5:5), because it pleased God to share His mysteries and secrets with us. We are no longer in the darkness- we know where we came from, we know why we are here, and we know where we are going. In the midst of a world living in spiritual darkness, we are to walk as a child of the light. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-27

Continuously Be Filled

"Be filled with the Spirit" (eph5:18). The command to “be filled with the Spirit” actually has the idea of continuously being filled in the original Greek language. We are not filled once and for all, like a bucket. But instead, we are to be filled constantly. So this verse might be translated, “Be filled and keep on being filled.” An example of this might be, think of a old farmhouse kitchen. In one corner is a sink, above it is a pipe through which came a continuous stream of water from a spring outside. The water by running constantly, kept the sink brimful of good water. In the same way, the Holy Spirit should flow within us constantly -and He will as we yield ourselves to Christ’s presence and power everyday. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-26

Denial, Delay, or Decision?

"If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first" (Jhn15:18). People often have one of three reactions to the message of the gospel. First, some will deny the gospel is true. Pride may prompt scorn, others may fear what people will think. Fear can also keep them from committing their lives to Christ. Second, some people will delay; saying I’ll think about it and make a decision some other time. But delaying their decision is dangerous. They may never hear the gospel again. Third, some will make a decision for Christ even though they know it may place them in a minority. It’s tough to be a Christian in our world. We need to be willing to take Jesus’ unpopularity and scorn. What’s your response to Jesus? Denial... Delay... or Decision? Have a blessed day!

2018-03-24

Give You Rest

"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (mtt11:28). Few of us know how to rest these days. Even when we are on vacation we cram in as much as we can before returning to work. Then, when we do return to work we spend twice as much time and energy trying to catch up on the mounds of work and emails that have stacked up. For many of us, we need a vacation just to rest up from our vacation. Maybe we have been looking for rest in the wrong place. Jesus tells, “Come to Me... and I will give you rest.” Peace, like rest and contentment can only be found in one place, from one source, and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus can and will give us the ultimate rest, the confidence we need to escape the frustration and chaos of the world around us. Rest in Him and don’t worry about what lies ahead, Jesus has already taken care of our tomorrow’s. Have a blessed weekend!

2018-03-23

A Gentle Tug on Our Heartstrings

"The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God" (rms8:16). How can we be certain about who and what God really is? There is a story told of a little boy who was out flying a kite. It was a great day for flying a kite. The wind was blowing just right, there was fluffy clouds moving across the sky. The kite was hidden in the clouds. The little boy was asked,”What are you doing?” He replied, “l’m flying a kite.” “Flying a kite, how can you be sure? You can’t see the kite. ”This might be true he said, but every once in a while, I feel a tug, so I know for sure that it is there.” Those of us who are called to Christ, may not see Him in the physical sense, but every once in a while He pulls on our heartstrings just to remind us that He is still with us. Has Christ pulled on your heartstrings lately? Have a blessed day!

2018-03-22

Seek God’s Will

"I will counsel you and watch over you" (psm32:8). Sometimes we face major crossroads in our lives (some that have rocked us to our very core). When this happens we may be wondering what is God’s will for us. It is imperative to remember when we are at these crossroads to: Seek God’s will. He knows what is best for us, and He doesn’t want us to wander aimlessly. God made us and He knows all about us. He loves us and wants only the best for us (even if we don’t understand His actions). Maybe we have made some bad decisions or life has not been kind to us (maybe at the hands of someone else). We should ask God to guide us as we make decisions about our future. He may not show us everything at once, but as we walk in the direction of His will, we can face the future knowing He will lead us in His perfect way. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-21

In the Mist of Trouble

"Though I walk in the mist of trouble, you will receive me" (psm138:7). Have you ever felt as if you've let God down? Have you fallen short of the mark God has called you to? Be sure of one thing, God loves you no matter what you’ve done. This is a promise from Him to those that are called His. The last thing God wants you to do is spend your life filled with guilt, shame and remorse (that is what Satan wants). May this truth give you hope. God wants to put back the pieces of your life and make it whole again. The apostle Peter felt this way and he denied Christ three times (mt26:69-75), yet God forgave him. So if you feel that you have failed God, ask for His forgiveness- ask Him also to help you forgive yourself for what you have done (it’s Satan who will remind you of your shortcomings). Then commit your future to Him. God will be with you every step of the way and you can trust Him to help you. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-20

All the days, all day long.

"I am with you always, to the very end of the age" (mt28:20). These words of Christ are a promise to all His disciples- those that have gone before us and to those who will follow behind us. They are a promise that is marvelously inclusive. NO situation is excluded, no challenge is omitted. This passage can be paraphrased, “I am with you all the days, all day long.” This means we can count on Christ’s presence not only every day, but every moment of every day. On this fact of Christ’s presence there can be not doubt, for His Word cannot fail. What we need is to cultivate the sense of His presence, every day, every moment. This happens as we speak to Him in worship and prayer, and listen to Him speak through His Word the Bible. Are you counting on God’s presence everyday? Have a blessed day!

2018-03-19

Joys of Heaven

"You have a better and enduring possession for yourselves in heaven" (heb10:34). Some people may think that Heaven will by dull and boring, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Heaven will be a happy home because friends will be there. Have you ever been to a strange place and had the joy of seeing someone you know? Not one of us who enter the Father’s house will feel lonely or strange, for we who have put our trust in Christ are part of His family, sharing Heaven's joys forever with our brothers and sisters in Christ . “The joys of Heaven are not the joys of passive contemplation of dreamy remembrance... but they are described this, ‘They rest not night or day,’ and ‘His servants serve Him and see His face’” (A.MacLaren). In the midst of this Earth’s turmoil, keep your eyes on Heaven for this is our promised hope! Have a blessed day!

2018-03-16

Peace is Possible

"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you... Don't let your heart be troubled and do not be afraid"(jn14:27). When we become followers of Christ, God doesn’t necessarily remove all our problems. But He does promise to help and encourage us in the midst of them. So how can we have this kind of peace? It is possible when we remember we are never alone if we know Christ. He loves us and is with us, nothing we will ever face takes Him by surprise, it may rock us to our core, but He isn’t surprised. This is also possible because His Spirit gives us patience and joy even in the midst of life’s difficulties. Peace is possible because we know our problems are only temporary. Someday they'll come to an end, it may be when we get through our current difficulties or it may be only when we reach Heaven. So I ask this question; Which is better: facing life’s problems and hurts without God or facing them with Him? Which will you choose? I know which one I have chosen. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-15

The Fullness of Joy

"In Your presence is fullness of joy" (psm16:11). Have you ever witnessed a young couple show their love for each other without saying a word? Every glance, every touch, every smile conveys love. They find absolute bliss simply being in each other’s presence. In the same way being in the presence of God should bring us great joy. It happens as we listen to Him speak in His Word, as we pray, as we meditate on His goodness, as we delight in the beauty of His creation, or maybe the surprise of an unexpected blessing. The Bible tells us,”Be still, and know that I am God”(psm146:70). Someday for those who know Christ, we will be in His presence forever; the Bible says,”God Himself will be with them”(rev21:3). What great joy and comfort this should be to us! But for right now, delight in His presence as much as we can, for He is with us always. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-14

Fill You With Joy

"May the Lord of hope fill you with all joy" (roms15:13). How often have we found what we were looking for in life, only to realize it didn’t bring us the satisfaction we thought it would? It is our ultimate frustration- thinking we will find fulfillment in the things of this life. But they never bring lasting happiness. We look for love, security and happiness through our jobs, our possessions and our relationships- but if they really brought lasting joy, wouldn’t we have testimonies to that effect from millions of people all over the world? Instead, we find emptiness, discontent, and unhappiness. But when we put Christ first in our lives- watch how our lives turn around. We discover that He alone is the source of the love, peace and joy we have been searching for. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-13

A New Creation

"If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation" (2cor5:17). Wouldn’t it be nice if we could find a medicine that would cure human nature’s weakness and failures? Conflict, discontent and unhappiness that plague people everywhere would be cured. God has provided the medicine- and that “medicine “ can be found in Christ. Through Him our sins can be forgiven, and by His Holy Spirit within us, our lives can be changed and renewed. Our sin, confusion and disillusionment can be replaced by joy, and hope. Our souls can know peace, a peace that is not dependent on outward circumstances. This wonderful cure was provided by Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection for us. Is He working daily in our lives, changing and making us more like Him? Have a blessed day!

2018-03-12

The Bible is Our Foundation

"We’re not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us?" (lk24:32). Is the Bible’s message honestly relevant today? Yes, and millions of believers around the world would attest. In fact, I believe it’s more relevant today than ever before. The Bible is as up-to-date as tomorrow’s news, we see events taking place that herald the second coming of Christ. But the Bible alone can answer the deepest questions of the human heart- question’s that have not changed over the centuries: Who am I? Why am I here? Where did I come from? Where am I going when I die? How should I live? Only the Bible gives us firm answers to these questions- and the reason is because it is God’s Word given by Him to guide us and point us to Christ. Is the Bible the foundation of your life? Have a blessed day!

2018-03-11

Let us Worship

"Come, let us bow down in worship; let us kneel before the Lord our Maker" (psm95:6). When was the last time you worshipped God, truly worshipped God? How can we worship God if we are not sure what worship is? Worship in its truest form can only take place if our full attention is on God, on His glory, on His power, on His majesty, on His love and His compassion. If we are to be honest, I don’t think this happens very often, because even in church or in our times of quiet devotion, we get distracted by the smallest of things. When we worship God we must learn to shut out all distractions (not an easy thing to do when life is so hectic). Then we need to turn our heart and mind to Him everyday, praising Him for who He is, and thank Him for His love and for what He has done for us. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-08

Light of the World

"You are the light of the world" (mt5:14). Jesus tells us, “You are the light of the world... Let your light so shine before (others), that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” (mt5:14,16). Can this be said of us? Maybe when life is going good, this is probably true. But let the trials and testing of life come along. Are we still able to be say this? For some of us we can say yes, for the rest of us maybe no. Our faith becomes stronger as we express it; a growing faith is a sharing faith. We live in a world that is lost and among a generation of lost people. How are we to “let your light so shine before others?” We need to begin now praying for those who need Christ and ask God to help us to be a witness to them- by the life we live and by the words we speak. Have a blessed day.

2018-03-07

Seek First the Kingdom

“The secret of happiness is not to do what you like to do, but to learn to like what you have to do“(King George V). Most think that happiness is elusive, only to be found by constant pursuit or relentless searching. But happiness is not an end to itself, it is the byproduct of something far greater. "Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you"(mt6:33). The “things” spoke about in this verse are our basic needs in life: food, drink, clothing, and shelter. Jesus told us not to make these things our goal in life, but to “seek... the kingdom.” There, if we are to take it is the keep to our happiness. Are we seeking God first or the things first? Have a blessed day!

2018-03-06

Ever Increasing

"We... are being transformed into (Christ’s) likeness with ever increasing glory" (2cor3:18). God can seem near to us when we walk along a beautiful beach or enjoying the wonder of a starry night, and these are amazing experiences. But these shouldn’t become a substitute for going to church, as some may say. God doesn’t just wants us to feel His presence. He wants to change our lives as well. How does this happen? How does God change us into the people He wants us to be? Not by just walking along a beautiful beach, as pleasant as it is. No, God mainly changes us by His Word, the Bible, as we read and listen to it’s truths as we allow it to shape our lives. This is one reason why we should become more active in a local church, were God’s Word is taught and lives. We will become more like Christ as we hear and obey His Word. Have a blessed day!

2018-03-05

On Being Content

"I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation" (phil4;12). I was told the story of two men. One was very wealthy and successful business man, the envy of all his friends and business associates. But this man was miserable inside. Even though he had everything he was still missing something. His wealth had not been able to fill the empty place in his heart. But in contrast, is the second man, who lived only a few miles from the first. His house was humble and he had few worldly possessions. Yet this man’s face was radiant as he told of what he was doing for Christ and how Christ filled his life with meaning and purpose. As I sat and listened, I am convinced that the second man was really the richer man. Even though he had little, he had learned to be thankful for everything God had given him. A spirit of thankfulness makes all the difference. So, are we being content in what God has given us? Have a blessed day.

2018-03-04

His Love Letter to Us

"The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple" (psm119:130). We ought to know more about the Bible- but if we are to be real with each other- the Bible is overwhelming and we’ve never really gotten into it deeply. We should remember that the Bible is God’s love letter to us. From Genesis to Revelation, it tells of God’s love for us- a love that is so great, that God sent His one and only Son into this world to redeem us. I don’t think any of us would ignore a letter from someone who loved us; we shouldn't ignore God’s love letter either. There are a few ways we can learn about the Bible: maybe a small group study, from your pastor’s sermon, a devotional or audiobook of the Bible. We should be willing to set a few minutes each day to begin reading through the Bible. Start in the book of John, ask God to help you to understand and how we can apply it to our lives. Have a blessed weekend!

2018-03-03

Don't be Afraid

"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ" (rms8:35). In the midst of a world filled with danger, hatred and wars, these words of Christ are just as relevant today as when He first spoke. Christ still says to all who know and love Him, “Don’t be afraid”, three hundred sixty-five times the Bible tell us this. But God comes to us in our hospital rooms or in the midst of a family tragedy. He comes to us in the midst of an unexpected business reversal or a health crisis. He comes wherever we are and in whatever we are facing. No matter the size of our crisis. He says to us, "Don’t be afraid. I am alive and here to help. The cross shows the depth of My love, and the resurrection shows the extent of My power." So who can separate us from the love of Christ? Nothing nor no one can separate us from the love of Christ! Have a blessed weekend.

2018-03-02

With You Always

I am with you always, even to the end of the age (mt28:20). I recall a story about David Livingstone, as he returned home to Scotland after sixteen difficult years as a missionary and explorer in Africa , his body was emaciated by the ravages of some twenty-seven fevers that had coursed through his veins during the years of service. His left arm hung by his side, the result of his being mangled by a lion. Speaking to the students at Glasgow University, he said, “Shall I tell you what sustained me during the hardship and loneliness of my exile? It was Christ’s promise, ‘Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’” This promise is ours as well. No matter what trials we face (whether small or life shattering), Christ never leaves us. He is with us every step of the way. I know it is difficult to remember this promise, especially when we are in the middle of life’s storms, but keep this promise before you today and always. Have a blessed day, the weekend is only hours away!

2018-03-01

Revival Today

Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (mt4:17). If Christianity is important at all, then it's all-important. If it is anything at all, then it's everything. It's either the most vital thing in our lives, or it isn’t worth bothering with. Don’t give the lie to Christian faith by professing Christ without possessing Him. Don’t lock the church door with the key of inconsistency and keep the lost from coming to Christ. Don’t cheat ourselves of spiritual victory by allowing sin to imprison us. You may be the only Bible the lost may see. How much are you truly revealing to them? Are we giving truth to what the Bible says by our actions or are we truly playing into what the world believes the Bible teaches? The church holds the key to revival. We, who call ourselves Christians are the church. The supply of Heaven is adequate for the demands of our spirituality starved world. Will we offer that supply to the hungry masses? May the revival that the world needs begin with us today.

2018-02-28

Fountain of Life

"For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light" (psm36:9). Sadly many people get their happiness only from their outward circumstances. As long as their lives are untroubled, the feel happy. When illness strikes, a relationship breaks down or any other unexpected troubles engulfs them, then their happiness flees. Have you ever seen a natural spring? It never varies it flow, floods may rage- its output doesn’t increase. There can be a long summer drought- again its output doesn’t decrease. Its flow remains the same, reliable and unending. Such is the peace we all yearn for and such is the peace Jesus promises to all who trust in Him: “The water that I shall give him will become in Him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life... My peace, I give to you" (jn4:14, 14:27). Do you have the kind of peace that only Christ can bring? If not, why? Have a blessed day!

2018-02-27

Our Purpose in His Plan

"Teach me Your way, O Lord, And lead me in a smooth path." (psm27:11). God has a plan or purpose for every person, although many go through life without ever thinking about it. Their lack of awareness doesn’t change the fact that God put each of us here for a purpose. We aren’t here by accident, we are here because God put us here. He put us here for a reason: so we could come to know Him in a personal way, and then to live in a way that brings glory to His name. This is the greatest discovery we will ever make: we were created to know God and to be His friend forever. I once heard this from a church catechism: “the chief end (purpose) of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” God not only has a general purpose for each of us, but He also has a specific plan for each of our lives. Don’t wander through life without any purpose or direction, but pray and seek God’s will and learn to follow Him. Have a blessed day!

2018-02-26

Our Good Shepherd

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul (psm23:1-3). No Psalm is better know or more loved than the 23rd Psalm. But has it become so familiar to us that we have forgotten its riches? The verses tell us that God is like a good shepherd: guiding us, keeping us safe, protecting us from our enemies, giving us everything we need. But it also hints at our tendency to wander or to get into trouble, like the lost sheep in one of Jesus’ parables (lk15:1-7). Our good Shepherd “makes” us lie down in green pastures, and He “leads” us to still waters (things we might not do on our own). So what kind of sheep are we? Will we be rebellious, prone to wander, resisting the gentle prodding from our Shepherd? Or do we gratefully submit to His wisdom and His ways? Remember Jesus’ words: “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me”(jn10:14). Have a blessed day!

2018-02-25

He is your Refuge

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer" (rm12:12). Discouragement and depression can come for many reasons. The loss of a loved one, maybe facing a problem that overwhelms us, or a chronic health problem. When we feel discouraged or overwhelmed, we should go to God in prayer (this of course is what we don’t do), committing it to Him. God wants us to be aware of His presence and His love when we walk those lonely roads. Knowing He is with us should give us hope- and from hope, joy. We will also find patience, when we rest in His sovereign power. Besides, where else can we turn but to Him? Whatever you’re dealing with right now, may you discover in a new way the truth of God’s promise: “The eternal God is your refuge and underneath are the everlasting arms”(deut33:27). Have a blessed weekend!

2018-02-24

Comfort & Compassion

God of all comfort, who comforts us in all troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble (2cor1:3-4). Does God care about what is going on in our lives? When life shattering hard times or illness strikes does He really care? Of course He does! When Paul wrote this passage he endured one of the hardest times in his life: “We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life”(2cor1:18). But in the midst of it God assured Paul of His compassion and presence, and in time God brought Paul through the trial he was in and opened the door of new opportunities. So why does God allow us to go through great trials? I think it is so that we might be able to “comfort those in any trouble.” Are you or anyone you know going through a difficult time? If so, thank God for His compassion, and then ask Him to teach you (them) how to comfort others. Remember: Christ knows what it is to suffer, for He suffered the cross for us. Have a blessed weekend!

2018-02-23

Let The Dead Bury Their Own

Another disciple said to him, “Lord, first let me go bury my father.” But Jesus told him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead!” (Mt8:21-22). At first glance Jesus’ sounds harsh. If the man's father died, wouldn’t it be compassionate to let him go and arrange the burial? It is likely that his father was alive and well, so the man was most likely saying that someday in the future-maybe months or years later- he would be willing to follow Jesus after his father's death. (Burial customs in those days were done within hours of death, so if his father had already died, the son wouldn’t be away, listening to Jesus). Jesus told the man (this is true for us too) that nothing- absolutely nothing must stand in the way of being His disciple. Many people are willing to have Jesus as part of their lives as long as it doesn’t cost them anything or hinders their plans. Jesus calls us to follow Him everyday. So what keeps us from being a disciple? Have a blessed weekend!

2018-02-22

Brevity of Life

Show me, O Lord, my life’s end and number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life (psm39:4). The question has been asked, “What has been the biggest surprise of life? Almost without thinking, “The brevity of life.” It is true: life is short, and the older we get the more we realize it. Events that happen thirty years ago seem like they took place just yesterday- but when our minds turn to the future, we realize just how short life is. None of us know just how much time we will be given, so even if God gives us a long life by most standards, our time is still short. The Bible tells us, “Each man's life is but a breath”(psm39:5). We shouldn’t waste our life on things that have no eternal value. Draw closer to Christ and make each day count for Him. See each days as a gift and use it for His glory. The Bible says, “Teach us the number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (psm90:12). Have a blessed day.

2018-02-21

Our Children

Train a child in the way He should go and when he is old he will not depart from it (prov22:6). Our children need to know right and wrong, and the best place to learn is at home. But so many families fail at this. If our children don’t learn it there, they will end up without any moral and spiritual anchor. Children need boundaries and parents who refuse to set boundaries or refuse to discipline their children are sending a signal, saying they don't care. The Bible tells us to train our children in God’s ways, “precept upon precept, line upon line... here a little, there a little”(isa28:10). In other words don’t wait till your child is a teenager and then try cramming religion and morals into them. This doesn’t work! We must start the very moment they have any understanding. But what is the most important & many forget, is that our children usually acquire their parents' characteristics and habits- so what are our children and grandchildren truly learning from us? Have a blessed day!

2018-02-20

Daily Devotional 02/20/2018

Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father (jn14:9). Many people respect Jesus’ moral teachings; they even respect His impact on us. But His teachings shocked and even offended those who heard His teachings; they even offend many today. So what is the offensive teaching? It was Jesus teaching about Himself. Jesus repeatedly made the most startling claims imaginable: He was God in human flesh. Think about it, the great and awesome God of the universe came down to Earth and took upon Himself human flesh. But His teachings didn't stop there, He also said that because He was divine- that He was without sin and that He could and would become our sin-bearer. All of our sins would be placed on Him- and that He would take on Himself the death and Hell we deserve. And this is exactly what he has done. We should never lose sight of who Jesus was and what He has done for us: God in human flesh who died for our sins- because He loves us! Have a blessed day.

2018-02-19

Daily Devotional 02/19/2018

So walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him (col2:6-7). Mount Mitchell in North Carolina is the highest point in the eastern United States. On it’s ridges are old trees that have been stunted and gnarled by the hostile climate and rocky soil. The local craftsmen love when one of the trees finally dies, it’s wood is highly prized, because it is so strong. It has resisted the fierce alpine winds for decades, and that has strengthened them. What happens when the winds of adversity blows in our lives? Does it flatten us, maybe it knocks us down or even stops our growth? Or does it like those trees, grow stronger? What makes the difference? Those trees I am told, that survive, are the ones with the deepest roots. The roots are like an anchor helping them survive the storms. We are to be like those trees, we are to make sure our soul is firmly planted in Christ, so that we may be “rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith”(col2:7). How deep are your roots? Have a blessed day.

2018-02-18

Daily Devotional 02/18/2018

What He opens no man can shut, and what He shuts no one can open (rev3:7). When God opens a door, what possible excuse can we have for not going through it? All over the world God is opening doors, making it possible for us to take the gospel to those who have never heard of Christ. Some live in places that have been freed from the grip of atheism; while others are engulfed in secularism or religious oppression. But in spite of these barriers God is opening doors for the preaching of the gospel. God may never call you to be a preacher or missionary (but He may). So, what will you do to help the gospel go through these open doors? Will you pray? Will you give? Will you go on missionary projects? Jesus said, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field” (mt9:37-38). Have a blessed weekend.

2018-02-16

Daily Devotional 02/16/2018

We give thanks to God... because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven (col1:1,5). Nothing compares to the homecoming of a true believer. At our moment of death, the believer enters Heaven itself, carried upward by the angels to the glorious welcoming awaiting the redeemed (lk16:22). From our human viewpoint death is always tinged with sadness, always. It is not wrong to mourn our loss of a loved one; Jesus wept at the grave of His friend Lazarus (jn11:32-33). But we should never consider the death of a fellow believer a tragedy. Paul said we should not “grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope” (1thes4:13). Yes, we have hope. The way to Heaven may be through the shadow of the valley of death, but the angels accompany us all the way- and beyond the shadowy valley is Heaven, our glorious home. Yesterday marked one month since our Sara’s homecoming. Have a blessed day and remember the weekend is only hours away.