Full of Deadly Poison

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Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God — James 3;9 NLT

We must always be careful with our words. Somehow, we have gotten into the bad habit of thinking that every word said to us needs a quick reply. It is those knee-jerk responses that get us into trouble most times. We need to take the time to consider what we have just heard and weigh its meaning. What is the situation? What is the tone of voice? Did we hear correctly? In our “busy” lifestyle nowadays, we have to have a lot more patience and consider the other person’s perspective.
Our words should always be uplifting and encouraging. Our lips should bless and not curse. The words we say should always be a “sweet, sweet sound” in the ears of God, then we know they will be pleasing to others. God listens and hears every word we say. Let our words be sweet cool water to a tortured soul. Then people will know what we have in our hearts.

For whatever is in your heart determines what you say.–Matt 12:34b (NLT)


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

Post 06-03-2017

Worse Than Worthless Words

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26 If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless. –James 1:26 NLT

I wish I had never said that! Sound familiar? Unfortunately, our spoken words are like our texts and our emails, once we have hit the send button, we can’t get them back. Words can pierce us to depths of our heart and the wounds are slow to heal, if they heal at all. In the carpenter trade (which Jesus was very familiar with), they have a saying” “measure twice, cut once”. Of course, the implication is that if you take the time to measure correctly, you want have to cut the lumber again. That would be a good rule for us to follow in our conversations. Think twice about what we are about to say before we say it and maybe no one will get cut to the bone. We should choose words that build up and create rather than destroy. We need to show our faithfulness to Jesus by caring for those around us that need our help. Not just physically and materially, but also spiritually. We need to walk carefully so that we are not corrupted.

Galatians 6:1-4 NLT


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

Post 05-27-2017

What is Good?

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8 No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you:
to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God. — Micah 6:8 NLT
 
These three requirements seem fairly simple. When we read them, we probably think that we already do these. And perhaps, to some extent, we do. Justice and kindness are things that we do naturally, right? What about the thoughts and the words that we speak when others are not around, are they just and kind? When someone wrongs you, are your thoughts of mercy or revenge? When you see others being mistreated, are you willing to get involved, regardless of the personal cost (Think of the Good Samaritan)? Walk humbly is the really tough one. Are we humble enough to give of our resources, of ourselves, of our abundance and of our time to help others? Even to the point of dying for them? And, if we do these things, are they to show others how righteous we are? Every good gift comes down from the Father above. When we share those gifts with others, we are laying up rewards in heaven.
Walk humbly with our God? Help me to do that, Jesus!

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

Post 12-09-2016

The Holy Spirit Brings Life

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21 The tongue can bring death or life;  those who love to talk will reap the consequences.
— Proverbs 18:24

Words are powerful. God spoke the world into existence and He gave Jesus all authority in heaven and earth. Jesus gave that authority to us.  So, we have the power to speak words of life and blessing or to speak words of death and cursing.  Do your words produce life or death?  Since we are indwelt by the Triune God, we have the words of life. The world needs something to believe in and hang onto. Speak words of life to those around you and you will not only bless them, but you will find as you speak those words and they become real to you, your attitude improves.  The Beatitudes are called that because speaking blessings should always be our attitude. James warns us that the tongue is a dangerous weapon that we are unable to control. 

We must allow the Holy Spirit to control it for us and it will produce fruit that brings forth life.  Let the fruits of the Spirit rule over you and you will become a life-giving stream to your family and friends.
Post 10-15-2016

I Surrender All

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1  O Lord, I give my life to you. — Psalm 25:1 NLT

Psalm 25:1-7 NLT

When we accept Jesus as our Savior, the Holy Spirit comes to abide within our hearts and minds.  God has sent Him to be our guide and our teacher.  If we are sincere about our repentance and listen to His teachings, we will soon discover that Jesus wants to be not only our Savior, but also our Lord. If we are going to allow Jesus to be Lord of our lives, there will have to be some changes made.  We are becoming new creatures and that requires tearing down the old.  We have new hearts inhabited by a new master.  He also wants to renew our minds.  Jesus, better than anyone, understands that the true battlefield is the mind.  It is where our thoughts and ideas originate. We have to learn to control our thoughts and imaginations and bring them all into the obedience of Christ Jesus.  Once our thought patterns change, our words and actions will change and our words and actions will let those around know which God we serve.  

 2 Cor. 10:3-6 NIV

Post 07-17-2016

One Message – Part 2

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3 They speak without a sound or word;  their voice is never heard.
4 Yet their message has gone throughout the earth,  and their words to all the world. — Psalms 19:3-4a NLT
Before the advent of televisions, satellites, cell phones and all of the assorted high tech stuff that is available to us today, people would wonder how God would get His message out to the whole world.  How would the whole world be able to watch as the two messengers in the book of the Revelation lay dead in the streets of Jerusalem?  Now, we can see how easily that can be accomplished.  Yet, God had a plan before all of this came to pass.  Nature gently prods us with His story every day.  The stars, the sun, and the moon tell us His story every day and night.  We are even told that if we refuse to praise the Lord, the rocks will cry out.
 
 

God had a plan from the beginning.  Even if there is an EMP that destroys all of the electronics, God can still get His message out to the ends of the world.  All of nature tells one story, one message that there is only one God who created and rules over the whole universe.  The old ‘gods’ are now known to be based on myths and one day, the whole world will see that all religions are based on deceptions and half-truths.  Only one story will survive and that is the story of Jesus.  Where we spend eternity depends on our relationship with Him. 

Post 07-16-2016

Positive or Negative?

even-smaller-bug-light165 Awe fell upon the whole neighborhood, and the news of what had happened spread throughout the Judean hills. 66 Everyone who heard about it reflected on these events and asked, “What will this child turn out to be?” For the hand of the Lord was surely upon him in a special way. — Luke 1:65, 66 NLT

 These are the words Luke wrote to describe the reactions of the people on hearing about the birth of John the Baptist.  It was a m​i​raculous event that Elizabeth should give birth at such a late age in life.  They were also in wonder that Zecheriah would allow his son to be named John since no one in the family had ever been named that.  In those days, the carrying on of traditional family names was extremely important.  Becuase of these two things, they knew that God was involved in a special way and that John must have a special purpose to fulfill.   Once Zecheriah ​was able to speak again, he prophesies about what that purpose is (vv 67-79).  

​In its own way, every birth is a miracle and every child has a special purpose in life.  God has a plan for every life and every one has been given a particular gift to accomplish that purpose.  Not all of us will be involved in what we call “fulltime” ministries, but all of us are involved in full time witnessing for the Lord.  Every wor​d and every action reflects positively or negatively on the Kingdom of God.  What is our lifestyle today telling people about Jesus and His Kingdom?  If someone observed us for a month, what do you think they would say about what we think is important?  Does our attitude and our demeanor tell others that we live in fear or that we have faith in a God who can and does do the impossible?  

10  Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
    I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. — Isaiah 41:10 NLT
Post 03-17-2016