Obedience Shows Our Love For God

5 But those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him. That is how we know we are living in him. — 1 John 2:5 NLT

1 John 2:3-8 NLT


Since God loved us so much that He gave Himself on the cross for our redemption, we should live our lives for His glory. Living that lifestyle and showing love for each other is how the world can see that we belong to Jesus Christ. If His word abides in us and we abide in Him, that relationship will be reflected in how we respond to situations in our daily lives. Bitter and sweet water can not come from the same stream. A lifestyle that reflects glory to God will be one that is characterized by the fruits of God’s Spirit. Grace, kindness, love, patience, joy, gentleness should be the fruit that we produce. Before we react to a stressful situation, we need to whisper a silent prayer. Counting to ten might keep you from saying something hurtful, but prayer will give you the words that are life-giving and beneficial to you and the other people involved in the situation. Don’be deceived into thinking that we should just go with the flow. God has put you where you are to make a difference in the lives of the people around you. Sometimes that requires us to step out of our comfort zone and show love to people who are seemingly unlovable. We are the light that God has placed in this world to dispel the darkness. God is just as concerned about what you say to those in the workplace as He is about your Pastor’s sermon on Sunday morning.  There are words of life that need to be spoken, but they must be spoken in love.

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

Post 05-26-2019

“The Source of All Comfort”

3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. — 2 Cor. 1:3 NLT

2 Cor 1:3-7 NLT

God, in His great love for us, wants to relieve us of all of our grief and distress.  It is not His desire that we should suffer.  No parent wants to see his or her child suffer.  We want to reach out and comfort our children even when they may have caused their discomfort by a bad decision that they made.  Love says help them, but Godly compassion says that there are times when they and we must endure those times of distress and grief so that we learn not to repeat our mistakes.  As parents, we want to deliver our kids from the storm.  The lesson that we need to learn and that we need to teach our children is that God doesn’t always need to deliver us from the storm, He is able to comfort us in the storm.  Rough seas may come and destructive winds may blow but nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.  When God doesn’t immediately deliver us from the storm we must seek His comfort in the storm.  Then we will be able to pass that comfort, peace and joy on to those around us.

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

Post 05-07-2019

“He Lifted Me”

2  He lifted me out of the pit of despair,  out of the mud and the mire.  He set my feet on solid ground
and steadied me as I walked along. — Psalm 40:2 NLT


Psalm 40:1-5 NLT

When we hit those rough patches and we all do at some point along the way, we need to remember passages like the one above.  There are times when friends can’t comfort us.  There are times in our lives when from all outward observations things are going fine, but inside we are in turmoil. There are times when what we feel is inexplicable because we don’t quite understand it ourselves.  How do we pray about things that we can’t even put into words?  How do we turn to the One who has lifted us out of the pit of despair when we don’t know what to say?  What do we do or say when being still and knowing the He is God is not enough.  How do we move from here back to solid ground and continue on our journey with Him? God has made a way for that to happen.  We bow before Him and tell Him that we are unable to pray.  He doesn’t get angry or upset, instead, as we wait before Him, He prays for us.  Just imagine God the Holy Spirit praying for us and through us, God the Son, Jesus, is at the right hand of God the Father interceding for us! God is listening to the 2nd and 3rd persons of the Trinity praying for us and He sees His own righteousness in Jesus Christ!  What more assurance do we need that whatever happens will truly be for our best?

Romans 8:26-28 NLT


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

Post 0320-2019

“Abba, Father”

23 Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved.  — John 13:23 NKJV

In a society where “real” men don’t show this kind of affection for each other, this verse can cause some confusion. We must remember that this occurred in a time and place where men greeted each other with a holy kiss. So, get past the first impression and see the picture as it is really meant to be seen.  See it as pure love with no lust involved.  Try to put yourself in John’s place and feel the comfort and joy that he must have felt right then. Remember the times in your early years when you would be frightened about something and your Dad would pick you and hold you against his bosom.  Do you remember the safety, and in a few minutes, the peace and the joy that you felt?   Or maybe, you were ailing and your Mom would hold you against her bosom to comfort you.  Isn’t it wonderful that we can still have that kind of relationship with Jesus?  We can run to Him, sit in His lap and He will wrap His arms around us to comfort and cheer us.  Get this picture in your mind and focus on it until it becomes real to you. Then, in those trying, difficult, scary times, run to Him with your arms wide open and simply say “Abba”, I love you!  He will be thrilled and you will have a time of peace that passes understanding and joy that overflows your heart.

15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” — Romans 8:15 NKJV

“The closer I get to the end of my life, it seems the only question that matters, Is the life I am living pleasing to God?” – Ken Gire In “Sacred”

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

Post 02-28=2019

“Speak”

43 For they loved human praise more than the praise of God. — John 12:43 NLT

John 12:42-50 NLT

There were many of the people, leaders in the religious communities and others who believed what Jesus was saying but refused to admit it in public. They were more concerned about what the Jewish leaders would say and do than they were about what Jesus said.  They were afraid that they would lose their positions in the community and be removed from the synagogue.  They would not admit publicly that they believed what Jesus said.  When we read these verses, it is easy for us to criticize and judge these people for their lack of support for Jesus.  But, if we stop, meditate and let the Holy Spirit lead us into the truth, we may just realize that we are sometimes like those people.  Yes, our egos say we would never deny Jesus and perhaps, verbally we wouldn’t.  However, we must look at our actions or our lack of action in certain situations.   How many times have we been nudged by the Holy Spirit to say something to someone or do something for someone and by our inactions, we said “NO”.  In those times, we became “secret believers”  preferring silence over speaking out for Jesus, our Lord and Savior.   How many times have we felt the shame when we are convicted of our inactivity by the Holy Spirit?   Jesus said that “if you deny me before men, I will deny you before the Father”.  If we do not speak out and our lifestyles do not show others that we are living for Jesus, then the truth of His words will judge us on the day of judgment.  We must be willing to get out of our comfort zones and be ridicule, offended and persecuted because we believe the truth.  There is only one God and only one Jesus who died for our sins.  There is no other way to heaven.

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

Post 01/22-2019

“Reach Out and Touch Someone”

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He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. 
– 2 Cor. 1:4 NLT
 
Everything that we have belongs to God. Whatever He has given to us is to be shared with those around us. The things with which God has blessed us should be held very loosely in our hands. They are to be used to bless others and further the work of the Kingdom here on earth. The early church understood and practiced this principle of giving and receiving. There are many verses that teach us to give to the poor, widows and orphans.  We must open ourselves up to be channels of blessings. This is also true in Spiritual things as well as natural.  In the Spiritual area, we don’t do quite as well in giving or receiving.  God has given us the Comforter to comfort us in all situations and we need to learn to share that message with a hurting world.  But, we also need to learn to accept that comfort when it is offered to us. Every one of us needs help in some area of our lives whether we want to admit it or not.  As long as we deny it, the pain and the chaos will not go away. None of us can fix ourselves, even though, satan would love for us to believe that we can. Reach out and touch someone was a Biblical principle long before it was a commercial.

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

Post 05-28-2018

Internal Guidance System

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20 “I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. 21 I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me.–John 17:20, 21 (NLT)
 

As we continue to listen in on this prayer, we find that all the things that Jesus asked our Father to do for the disciples, He asks Him to do for us as well. It is the very heart of Jesus that we be holy and that we be full of peace and joy. Earlier, He had told us that He would send another to replace Himself.

26 “But I will send you the Advocate—the Spirit of truth. He will come to you from the Father and will testify all about me.—John 15:26 (NLT)

This Advocate, this Counselor, Comforter, Teacher, Encourager guides us into all truth. Jesus was God in the flesh and as such, He could not physically enter into us, but this Advocate is God in Spirit. He could, would, and does dwell inside each believer reminding us of what Jesus did and said. He is our internal guidance system, installation charges prepaid by our Big Brother, no monthly fees, no interruptions and worldwide coverage with no breaks. Maybe that is why we say those that don’t have it are lost. It is our duty to tell the lost about this free guidance service. And like any good plan, you get a reward when they allow it to be installed! You get a blessing here and now! But, wait, there’s more! You get a reward when you get to heaven!


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

Post 11-26-2017