“You Will Be Full of Courage…”

28 And now, dear children, remain in fellowship with Christ so that when he returns, you will be full of courage and not shrink back from him in shame. – 1 John 2:28 NLT

John 2:26-29 NLT

We need to remember that we are always in God’s presence. He is omnipresent, there is no escaping His eye as it roams to and fro over the earth. We must strive to live holy lives every day.

17 I see everything they do. They cannot hide from me the things they do; their sin is not hidden from my eyes–Jeremiah 16:17 (NCV)

While our sins are forgiven, any unconfessed sins in our lives temporarily breaks our fellowship with God. That was the reason for the prayer that Jesus prayed in Gethsemane. He knew that when all the sin of the world was put upon Him, His fellowship with Our Father would be temporarily broken. That would be the one and only time that would be true and it caused Him great anguish. We should feel that same anguish when we fail. When we fail, we should never let satan use that as a weapon to bring us down. What we should feel is not guilt or condemnation, but conviction that causes us to repent. But that is not the end of the story. Just as Jesus was restored to full fellowship with God, so will we be. When God looks at us, He sees us through the blood of Jesus. So, He sees us as righteous just as Christ is righteous. Hopefully, as we strive to live obedient lifestyles, we won’t have to suffer through many of those times of broken fellowship.

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

“Take Courage…”

8 You, too, must be patient. Take courage, for the coming of the Lord is near. ​ — James 5:8 NLT

James 5:7-9 NLT

God has never failed to fulfill a single promise that He has made. Jesus said that He would be coming back one day and so He will. We wait with eager expectation for that day to come and it is nearer than it has ever been. Will He come in our lifetime? We have no way of knowing and it doesn’t really matter. Waiting, in a Biblical sense, does not mean that we sit around and twiddle our thumbs. God has a plan and a purpose for each of us. We are to be redeeming the time while we are here on this earth. We do that by laboring in the harvest. Jesus said “the fields are white for harvest, but the laborers are few”. That doesn’t mean that we have to be pastors, ministers, preachers. missionaries, teachers, or involved full time in any Christian ministry. Our neighborhoods and our workplaces are just as much “fields white with harvest” as any foreign land. Work while you wait. If God hasn’t given you any new directions then keep laboring in the field that God has you in now. God will honor your faithfulness. Just like some of the old prophets, we may never see the results of our labors here on earth, but we can be sure that if we speak His Word, it is powerful and effective.

Isaiah 55:10-11 NLT

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

“They Were Afraid”

13 But no one had the courage to speak favorably about him in public, for they were afraid of getting in trouble with the Jewish leaders. – John 7:13 NLT

John 7:10-13 NLT

Jesus did the things He did and He did them the way He did because of His complete obedience to God the Father. He could have chosen to do otherwise, but then He would not have been the sinless sacrifice.

19 So Jesus explained, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does. ​-John 5:19​

When we are faced with non-believers and those who would ridicule and persecute us, what do we say about Jesus? Is Jesus just some “good man” or is He the Savior and Lord of our life? Is he just a historical figure or was He the Messiah? Is He our “strong tower” to run into for shelter or do we live “in the shadow of His wings”? God is not in a contest with other “gods”, He is the only God! In each of our lives, we must decide if He is “Lord of all” or not “Lord at all”. There is a war going on for the control of our minds and there are only two choices, there is no neutral ground.

31 So what should we say about this? If God is for us, no one can defeat us.–Romans 8:31 (NCV)

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

Post 04-13-2020

“I Testify That He Is the Chosen One”

34 I saw this happen to Jesus, so I testify that he is the Chosen One of God​. – John 1:34 NLT

John’s Testimony

This is the faithful witness of a faithful servant. He saw all the messages he had preached come to life in one Man/God.

​1 ​In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.–John 1:1 (NLT)
14 So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.​–John 1:14 (NLT)​

Not only do we have the witness of John the Baptist, but we have the witness of God Himself.

16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”—Matt. 3:16,17 (NLT)

Let us use these examples as an inspiration to be faithful witnesses. We do not need to worry about what we will say or do, if we are questioned about our Christianity. God has promised us over and over that He will never forsake us nor leave us. He goes before us, He is with us, and He is our rearguard. He has also promised to give us the words to say.

19 But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; 20 for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.—-Matt 10:19,20 (NLT)

Although these words were spoken to the twelve disciples as Jesus sent them out to witness, I believe they are just as true for us today when we make ourselves available for God to use. We need to store the Word in our heart by meditating on the Scriptures. Then whenever and wherever we go, we should remember God’s words to Joshua.

9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”—Joshua 1:9 (NLT)

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

Post 03-92-2020

“You, Too, Must Be Patient”

8 You, too, must be patient. Take courage, for the coming of the Lord is near. ​ — James 5:8 NLT

James 5:7-9 NLT

God has never failed to fulfill a single promise that He has made. Jesus said that He would be coming back one day and so He will. We wait with eager expectation for that day to come and it is nearer than it has ever been. Will He come in our lifetime? We have no way of knowing and it doesn’t really matter. Waiting, in a Biblical sense, does not mean that we sit around and twiddle our thumbs. God has a plan and a purpose for each of us. We are to be redeeming the time while we are here on this earth. We do that by laboring in the harvest. Jesus said “the fields are white for harvest, but the laborers are few”. That doesn’t mean that we have to be pastors, ministers, preachers. missionaries, teachers, or involved full time in any Christian ministry. Our neighborhoods and our workplaces are just as much “fields white with harvest” as any foreign land. Work while you wait. If God hasn’t given you any new directions then keep laboring in the field that God has you in now. God will honor your faithfulness. Just like some of the old prophets, we may never see the results of our labors here on earth, but we can be sure that if we speak His Word, it is powerful and effective.

Isaiah 55:10-11 NLT

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

Post 01-04-2020

Witnesses

even-smaller-bug-light1

34 I saw this happen to Jesus, so I testify that he is the Chosen One of God

​. – John 1:34 NLT

This is the faithful witness of a faithful servant. He saw all the messages he had preached come to life in one Man/God.
​1 ​In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.–John 1:1 (NLT)
14 So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.​–John 1:14 (NLT)​

Not only do we have the witness of John the Baptist, but we have the witness of God Himself.
16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”—Matt. 3:16,17 (NLT)
Let us use these examples as an inspiration to be faithful witnesses. We do not need to worry about what we will say or do, if we are questioned about our Christianity. God has promised us over and over that He will never forsake us nor leave us. He goes before us, He is with us, and He is our rearguard. He has also promised to give us the words to say
19 But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; 20 for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.—-Matt 10:19,20 (NLT)
Although these words were spoken to the twelve disciples as Jesus sent them out to witness, I believe they are just as true for us today when we make ourselves available for God to use. We need to store the Word in our heart by meditating on the Scriptures. Then whenever and wherever we go, we should remember God’s words to Joshua.
9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”—Joshua 1:9 (NLT)

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

Post 08-06-2017

“We’ll Work ‘Til Jesus Comes”

even-smaller-bug-light1

You, too, must be patient. Take courage, for the coming of the Lord is near. ​ — James 5:8 NLT


God has never failed to fulfill a single promise that He has made. Jesus said that He would be coming back one day and so He will. We wait with eager expectation for that day to come and it is nearer than it has ever been. Will He come in our lifetime? We have no way of knowing and it doesn’t really matter. Waiting, in a Biblical sense, does not mean that we sit around and twiddle our thumbs. God has a plan and a purpose for each of us. We are to be redeeming the time while we are here on this earth. We do that by laboring in the harvest. Jesus said “the fields are white for harvest, but the laborers are few”. That doesn’t mean that we have to be pastors, ministers, preachers. missionaries, teachers, or involved full time in any Christian ministry. Our neighborhoods and our workplaces are just as much “fields white with harvest” as any foreign land. Work while you wait. If God hasn’t given you any new directions then keep laboring in the field that God has you in now. God will honor your faithfulness. Just like some of the old prophets, we may never see the results of our labors here on earth, but we can be sure that if we speak His Word, it is powerful and effective.
 
Isaiah 55:10-11 NLT


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

Post 6-10-2017

Be God’s BFF

even-smaller-bug-light1

1 I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart;  I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done.
2 I will be filled with joy because of you.  I will sing praises to your name, O Most High. 
— Psalm 9:1, 2 NLT
 
 

As we tell and retell the Gospel story and talk about all the marvelous things God has done for us, we are filled with joy.  The more we tell the old, old story, the more sure our hope becomes and the more joy we have to help us get through each day.  That old liar, satan, comes around every day telling us how bad things are and pointing out all the things we don’t have.  But all we need to do is stop and consider all the things with which God has blessed us. Then we need to thank Him and praise Him for all that He has done, is doing and will continue to do for us. We need to remind ourselves and satan about Paul’s admonition to us in Philippians on the things we need to focus on in our daily thought patterns.

Philippians 4:8, 9

God tells over and over that we should not worry, fear or be discouraged, yet, we spend more time considering what we are going to do when bad things happen than we do praising God for what He has done, is doing and will continue to do for us.  Just as we don’t want to hear our kids complaining about what they don’t have all the time, neither does God want to hear our murmurs and complaining every day.  It was this kind of behavior by God’s chosen people that caused Him to be angry with them on their trek through the desert. Do we want best friends who only tell us about their problems or those who share their concerns and their victories with us?  God is our best friend, let us treat Him like we would our best friend.  Talk with Him, not just to Him every day and praise Him for all of His goodness, then we will be filled with HIs peace and His joy, which is His gift to us.

 

Post 04-24-2016

Study. Meditate. Listen!

even-smaller-bug-light1Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”  — Joshua 1: 8,9 NLT

In verse one of this chapter, ​we read ​ “the Lord spoke to Joshua”.  So the instructions for Joshua​ to study the Books of the Old Testament that Moses had written came straight from the mouth of the Lord.  The Lord says that “only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do”.  God gives us the same intructions about studying the whole Bible.  
15 Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.. — 2 Timothy 2:15 NLT
The King James version says “study to show yourself approved unto God”.  How much time do we spend in meditating on God’s Word?  How often do we go out into the world unprepared because of a lack of studying the Book of Instruction that God has given to us? Is it any wonder that we are so often defeated when we haven’t given God time to speak to us before we enter the fray?  How often do we go naked into the battle instead of being dressed in the whole armor of God?  Is it any wonder that we walk so trepidly when God has commanded us to be “strong and courageous”?  Our courage and our successes come after we have read and meditated on His Word, not before or in the absence of allowing the Holy Spirit to speak to us and to explain God’s word to us.  God has not changed, so, yes, He still speaks to us today.  He speaks to us through His Word, through His people and yes, He speaks to us directly if we will be still and listen.  Jesus said  “my sheep know my voice” (John 10:25-30).  To know someone’s voice, it would be necessary, at some point, to have actually heard that voice speak.
Study. Meditate.  Listen! 
Post 03-02-2016

I Saw This Happen

God is waiting to show you the Way.

God is waiting to show you the Way.

32 Then John testified, “I saw the Holy Spirit descending like a dove from heaven and resting upon him. 33 I didn’t know he was the one, but when God sent me to baptize with water, he told me, ‘The one on whom you see the Spirit descend and rest is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ 34

    I saw this happen to Jesus,

so I testify that he is the Chosen One of God.–John 1-32-34 (NLT)
​This​ is the faithful witness of a faithful servant. He saw all the messages he had preached come to life in one Man/God.
​1 ​In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.–John 1:1 (NLT)
14 So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.​–John 1:14 (NLT)​
Not only do we have the witness of John the Baptist, but we have the witness of God Himself.
16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”—Matt. 3:16,17 (NLT)
​Let us use these examples as an​ inspiration to be faithful witnesses. We do not need to worry about what we will say or do, if we are questioned about our Christianity. God has promised us over and over that He will never forsake us nor leave us. He goes before us, He is with us, and He is our rearguard. He has also promised to give us the words to say
19 But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; 20 for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.—-Matt 10:19,20 (NLT)
Although these words were spoken to the twelve disciples as Jesus sent them out to witness, I believe they are just as true for us today when we make ourselves available for God to use. We need to store the Word in our heart by meditating on the Scriptures. Then whenever and wherever we go, we should remember God’s words to Joshua.
9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”—Joshua 1:9 (NLT)​ (emphasis mine)​
Post 10-25-14