“Why Are Your Hearts Filled With Doubt?”

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38 “Why are you frightened?” he asked. “Why are your hearts filled with doubt?  — Luke 24:38 NLT
As the two men who had met Jesus on the road to Emmaus were sharing their story with the disciples, Jesus suddenly appeared among them.  Jesus spoke to them and said “Peace be with you”.  But they were startled and frightened, how could this be?   After three years of walking with Jesus and hearing His teachings on a daily basis, the disciples were still not convinced that Jesus would really be resurrected.  They thought they were looking at a ghost.  Jesus told them to look closely and see that it was really Him.  He invited them to touch Him and know that He was real.  Still, they were not fully convinced, so Jesus asked for something to eat.  We can wonder at the unbelief and lack of faith of the disciples but we show that same unbelief and lack of faith when we are fearful and worry about things.  We need to examine ourselves and ask ourselves the same questions that Jesus asked the disciples, “why are we frightened and why are our hearts filled with doubt”?  God has told us over 365 times in the Bible in one form or the other, :“DO NOT FEAR!”.  Yet, is there a day that goes by that we do not express fear and doubt with our words and/or actions?  Instead of accessing the peace and the joy that Jesus has promised and is waiting to give each of us so that we can enjoy today with Him, we obsess over what MIGHT happen tomorrow.  If we really believe that Jesus can and will provide our every need, then we should just rest in His arms and allow Him to do exactly what He said He would do.
“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 12-29-2018

Overcoming Our Fears

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38 Afterward Joseph of Arimathea, who had been a secret disciple of Jesus (because he feared the Jewish leaders), asked Pilate for permission to take down Jesus’ body. When Pilate gave permission, Joseph came and took the body away. – John 19:38 NLT

After the death of Jesus, Joseph of Arimathea asked for permission to take the body and bury it. Joseph was a man wealthy enough to have his own tomb dug for him. He was also a member of the Sanhedrin, as was Nicodemus. Nicodemus was wealthy enough to purchase the hundred pounds of myrrh and aloes, both of which were very expensive items in that day. It would have taken someone influential and well-known to approach Pilate and ask for the body of Jesus. Though they were both influential and wealthy men, they were both secret disciples of Jesus because they feared both the Romans and the other Jewish leaders. They could have been imprisoned (as Joseph was in later years), beaten or sentenced to death. The question we need to ask ourselves today is this: “What are the fears that keep us from openly serving Jesus?” What keeps us from telling family, friends and neighbors about Jesus?

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 12-12-2017

Don’t Worry Yourself to Death

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10 And don’t grumble as some of them did, and then were destroyed by the angel of death. — 1 Cor. 10:10 NLT
As Christians, we don’t live lifestyles of continual sinning but since none of us are perfect, we still sin.  We commit sins of omission when we fail to move or speak when the Holy Spirit tells us to go or to speak to someone about Jesus.  We commit sins of omission when we don’t help those around us when we have the resources available to help them.  We also commit sins of commission when we fear, worry or grumble.  If God had written more than ten commandments, the next three might well have been “thou shalt not fear”, “thou shalt not worry” and “thou shalt not grumble”.   While they are not official commandments, when we read verses that contain words such as “have I not told you”or “God said” or “Jesus said” that should make them official enough for us to obey them.  The grumbling that the Israelites did that caused God to destroy them was their continual complaining about God’s provisions for them and the leaders He had chosen for them.  Well, yeah, we say, but worrying, fearing and grumbling are just natural things.  While that is true, therein lies the issue that God has with us when we do it.  He has given us access to the resurrection power that enables us to live above the natural.  When we refuse to access that power and live the abundant life, are we not refusing the gift God gave us at the cross?
Post 08-28-2016 

More Than a Suggestion!

even-smaller-bug-light132 “So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom. — Luke 12:32 NLT

Most Christians are very familiar with this passage of Scripture.  We are probably more familiar with the version in Matthew 6.  These passages are about how God will take care of us and all of our needs.  We are warned not to be concerned about our needs for tomorrow.  Rather, we are to be concerned with our thoughts and activities for today.  In the above verse, God extends that promise to include not only our needs but the whole Kingdom of God.  We assume that that is a promise for the future and it is.  But, if we put this verse in the context of what Jesus is teaching the disciples and us, then it becomes a promise for now and later.  Particulary, in the Matthew version, this teaching follows closely after Jesus has taught the disciples what we call “The Lord’s Prayer”.  In that prayer,  Jesus teaches us to pray,”Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth even as it is in heaven.”   We are a part of the Kingdom of God that exists on earth now. Not in its perfect state, that will come later, nevertheless, it exists now and God wants us to enjoy the benefits of living in the Kingdom now and much more later. It gives God great joy when we accept His gifts and live lives that are full of joy and worry-free. When Jesus tells us not to worry and not to fear, His words are not just empty words, they carry the weight of the Resurrection Power of God behind them! They are more than a mere suggestion!
Popst 04-06-2016

Above Everyone and Everything or Not At All!!

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

10 For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.
11 For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. 12 For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ. 13 For you have heard of my former manner of life in Judaism, how I used to persecute the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it; 14 and I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries among my countrymen, being more extremely zealous for my ancestral traditions.—Galatians 1:10-14 (NASB)

​Paul tells us that ​if pleasing others, whether they be family, friends, neighbors or society at large, is more important than pleasing God, then we are not bond servants of Jesus Christ. Jesus is not happy with being number one in a race with some idols of our making.. He wants to be the one and only one in contention for our affections. This is the Gospel that was revealed to Paul by God. When we really get hold of this message, we understand that repentance is more than turning from an old way of life, it is turning to a new way of living. Old things have passed away and all things have become new.
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.—2 Cor. 5:17 (NASB)
​No matter how intelligent we are or what strata of society we come from, we must see ourselves and our righteousness as filthy rags before God. Nothing we have can save us and no one else can repent for us, we have to do it for ourselves.
Post 03-18-2015

Jesus is Waiting to Fill Your Emptiness

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

4 At dawn Jesus was standing on the beach, but the disciples couldn’t see who he was. 5 He called out, “Fellows,​ ​​ha​ve you caught any fish?”​ “No,” they replied.
6 Then he said, “Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you’ll get some!” So they did, and they couldn’t haul in the net because there were so many fish in it.​ 7 Then the disciple Jesus loved said to Peter, “It’s the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his tunic (for he had stripped for work), jumped into the water, and headed to shore. 8 The others stayed with the boat and pulled the loaded net to the shore, for they were only about a hundred yards from shore. 9 When they got there, they found breakfast waiting for them—fish cooking over a charcoal fire, and some bread.—John 21:4-9 (NLT)

​A​s the disciples head for shore, someone on the beach, calls to them and asks if they have had any success. They tell Him “no” . So, He says throw your net on the right side of the boat. Put yourself in their situation. Here is a boat with at least seven highly experienced fishermen in it and someone (at this point, they haven’t recognized that it is Jesus) on the beach is telling them that all they need to do is throw the net on the right side of the boat. What do you suppose quick tempered Peter was thinking about now? What would you have been thinking? Whatever the discussion might have been, they decide to follow His suggestion and they catch so many fish they can’t haul in the net. At this point, John recognizes Jesus and tells Peter. Peter has his normal reaction and jumps into the water, the others stayed with the boat. (Does that sound familiar?) Jesus is waiting on the shore with breakfast ready. Just as they had given up, Jesus shows up and there is an abundance of fish. then he serves them breakfast. At our lowest point and when we have given up, Jesus comes to us with his abundance and serves us with all we need and more. No matter how you feel right now, Jesus knows about it, He is waiting to fill our nets. He is never late, He will show up on time.
Post 03-12-2015

Stop the “Busyness” and Rest in Jesus

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

1 Later, Jesus appeared again to the disciples beside the Sea of Galilee.This is how it happened. 2 Several of the disciples were there—Simon Peter, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples.​ 3 Simon Peter said, “I’m going fishing.”​ “We’ll come, too,” they all said. So they went out in the boat, but they caught nothing all night.​–John 21:1-​3​ (NLT)
​After some few days ​(at least 9, possibly more), the disciples decided to go fishing. They had seen Jesus and knew that He had risen from the grave, but the Holy Spirit had not yet come. For three years they had had a leader and a constant companion. Now, they were like sheep without a shepherd. As most of us do when we don’t know what else to do, we go back to doing what we used to do. Peter, having the strongest personality, seems to have become the temporary leader by default. They fished all night without success. “Busyness” for the sake of being busy is not usually very productive or satisfying.. They were most likely feeling very tired, alone and frustrated. When we have been with Jesus for a while and then we drift away, we have had that feeling. Kinda like you are lost at sea and just bobbing around on the waves. We may not know where we are or which direction to go, but Jesus knows exactly where we are and what we need. We have an advantage the disciples didn’t have at that time. We have God the Holy Spirit living inside of us. Unlike them, we are never alone. If you have these kind of feelings now or any time, just stop and let Jesus wrap you in His arms. He is waiting for us, just as the disciples will discover that He is waiting for them.
Post 03-10-2015