Friday, February 28, 2014

Eternal Excursion!

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I heard a loud voice shout from the throne:

God's home is now with his people. He will live with them, and they will be his own. Yes, God will make his home among his people.  He will wipe all tears from their eyes, and there will be no more death, suffering, crying, or pain. These things of the past are gone forever.

Revelation 21:3-4

It is a fact of life that the older you get the more pain you experience. I heard an old man once say, "When I wake up in the morning, the pain lets me know that I am still alive!" The limitations of living that come with aging are all reminders of our need for Heaven.

More and more I feel like an animal caught in a trap. The natural freedoms of youth and good health slowly leave each of us as we grow old. When I was in my 20's I would regularly pick up a 90 pound bag of cement. It was not easy, but it did not exhaust my strength. I am more than 65 now and recently I went to buy such a bag at a home improvement store. I bent over to pick up the bag of cement and I could not lift it off of the floor!

When I was young and strong, the thought of Heaven was not nearly as pleasant as it is for an old man. In Heaven I will be strong. There will be no more sorrow, or death, or suffering, or crying or pain! Those ravages that came on me because of the curse of fallen man will all be wiped away! Even though I live today with the Holy Spirit in my heart and the Love of God molding me into the likeness of Jesus Christ I am still a human being and suffer from the effects of Adam's sin!

But the day is coming, and for those of us who are older it is coming soon, when either Jesus will come or I will go to be with Him! The brief journey of life on this earth will be over and the eternal excursion before the Throne of God will begin!

"Dear Jesus, every pain I feel today reminds me of Your promise to take away all the pain, suffering and death itself! Help me today Lord to complete the work You have for me so that I will be ready for You to come or me to go! And may You be praised now and forevermore! Amen."

Thursday, February 27, 2014

When Trouble Comes!

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Some time later, God spoke to Azariah son of Oded. At once, Azariah went to Asa and said:

Listen to me, King Asa and you people of Judah and Benjamin. The Lord will be with you and help you, as long as you obey and worship him. But if you disobey him, he will desert you.

For a long time, the people of Israel did not worship the true God or listen to priests who could teach them about God. They refused to obey God's Law. But whenever trouble came, Israel turned back to the Lord their God and worshiped him.

There was so much confusion in those days that it wasn't safe to go anywhere in Israel. Nations were destroying each other, and cities were wiping out other cities, because God was causing trouble and unrest everywhere.

2 Chronicles 15:1-6

Replace the word "Israel" with the name of your country in verses 3 and 4 and then read them again.

"For a long time, the people of the United States did not worship the true God or listen to men (priests) who could teach them about God. They refused to obey God's law. But whenever trouble came, the United States turned back to the Lord their God and worshiped Him."

Do you remember the days after the 9-11 attack? Members of Congress gathered on the steps of the Capitol to sing "God bless America" and there was a temporary rush to go back to church. There were even national newscasters who called the nation to prayer! But that turn back to God only lasted a few days, weeks or months at best. Then we were back to our old ways of banning God from as much of our lives as we possibly could.

The lesson we should learn from 9-11 is truly sobering. God wants the people of the United States to turn their hearts back to Him before trouble comes again. But His desire for our hearts is so strong that He is willing to let us suffer greatly if that is what it takes to lead us back to Him.

Consider the price that the United States (or your nation) has paid, is paying and will pay for standing against God and His Word. There is no doubt that we will be called back to God and that "calling" may be much more painful than 9-11!

For your sake and the sake of everyone who lives in your nation turn your heart back to God today! You will never regret letting Jesus Christ be the Lord of your life.

"Dear Jesus, we have turned away from You and tried to tell You how much influence You can have in our country. We have told You that Your righteousness could come as a sprinkle of rain or at most a light shower. But Lord let Your righteousness come as a down pour and then as a flood across our land. And may You, Jesus be praised and glorified forever. Amen."

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

When I Become Like Jesus


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Our God, we thank you

for being so near to us!

Everyone celebrates

your wonderful deeds.


You have set a time

to judge with fairness.


The earth trembles,

and its people shake;

you alone keep

its foundations firm.


You tell every bragger,

“Stop bragging!”

And to the wicked you say,

“Don't boast of your power!


Stop bragging! Quit telling me

how great you are.”


Our Lord and our God,

victory doesn't come

from the east or the west

or from the desert.


You are the one who judges.

You can take away power

and give it to others.


You hold in your hand

a cup filled with wine,

strong and foaming.

You will pour out some

for every sinful person

on this earth,

and they will have to drink

until it is gone.


But I will always tell about

you, the God of Jacob,

and I will sing your praise.


Our Lord, you will destroy

the power of evil people,

but you will give strength

to those who are good.

Psalm 75:1-10

Do you get angry at evil people? Does it make you mad that wickedness flourishes in so many places on earth today? Do you want to go to war against injustice and discrimination? So many people today are like a doctor who accurately diagnoses the disease, but prescribes the wrong medicine. They see the evils of this world and work diligently to make them "illegal!" The problem with that solution is that "Evil" does not obey the "Law."

Then in frustration and the belief that "The End Justifies the Means" they seek to destroy those who are evil. Isn't that what God ultimately does? Well of course it is, but until that Judgment Day comes God has another solution, and it is our job to pursue it.

When an evil man or woman meets Jesus Christ and decides to follow Him, his past sins are wiped away and he loses his desire to keep on sinning. Evil is defeated as one sinner at a time is changed into the likeness of Jesus Christ. Delivering that message of radical change is the "mission" of every follower of Jesus.

When I become like Jesus there is no room for the wickedness that used to occupy my heart. When I become like Jesus my thoughts become like the thoughts of God and my greatest delight is seeing the Blood of Jesus wash another sinner and spread the joy of knowing Him!

"Lord Jesus, thank You for letting me engage in the battle against wickedness and evil by spreading the Good News that every man and woman alive today can become like You. Let me tell someone today of Your great love and the joy of knowing You. Come quickly, Lord Jesus. Amen!"

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Joy of Heaven!

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Fig trees may no longer bloom,

or vineyards produce grapes;

olive trees may be fruitless,

and harvest time a failure;

sheep pens may be empty,

and cattle stalls vacant—

but I will still celebrate

because the Lord God

is my Savior.


The Lord gives me strength.

He makes my feet as sure

as those of a deer,

and he helps me stand

on the mountains.

Habakkuk 3:17-19

We carefully teach our children to rejoice and celebrate because of the way God blesses them! And it is good to be grateful to God for all His blessings, but there is a deeper truth that followers of Jesus Christ must learn.

Those who have given their hearts to God always have a reason to celebrate! Even in the depths of sickness, death and human tragedies the real justification for celebration is not touched.

When Jesus hung on the Cross He provided the permanent solution for every human despair. The ravages of Satan and of sin do not ascend to Heaven when we leave here. No suffering here on earth transfers to Heaven. And no joy on this earth even comes close to the Eternal Joy of Heaven!

Let today be a day of celebration in your life, even if all around you is pain and suffering and human tragedies of Olympic proportions. Let your joy come straight from Heaven and your celebration be fueled by the fire of God Himself!

"Lord Jesus open my eyes and ears and heart to the joys of knowing You and of the celebration that is going on right now in Heaven! Come quickly, Lord Jesus! Amen."

Monday, February 24, 2014

Beautiful Beyond Description

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My friends, be patient until the Lord returns. Think of farmers who wait patiently for the autumn and spring rains to make their valuable crops grow. Be patient like those farmers and don't give up. The Lord will soon be here! Don't grumble about each other or you will be judged, and the judge is right outside the door.

My friends, follow the example of the prophets who spoke for the Lord. They were patient, even when they had to suffer.  In fact, we praise the ones who endured the most. You remember how patient Job was and how the Lord finally helped him. The Lord did this because he is so merciful and kind.

James 5:7-11

When a new baby is born the most difficult time is right before the moment of birth. The time of labor is always hard and sometimes terrible. The nine months of carrying a child requires a lot of patience on the part of both parents.

We are closer now to the time of the return of Jesus than ever before. Many people believe that the labor pains are well under way. Troubles are everywhere in the lives of those who love Jesus. You need patience and faith just to get through one day.

But the "delivery" is coming when we will be delivered from this world and ushered into Heaven to be with Jesus forever! It will happen in the "twinkling of an eye." Faster than you can blink your eyes Jesus will be here and Eternity will begin. And all the trouble we have had here will seem like nothing compared to the Glory we will share with Jesus.

Here is a good thing to do. Live today as if this is the day for the return of Jesus. Be ready for His return every second of this day. Cast off all thoughts that would pull you away from Him. Run away from every temptation. When you become aware of sin in your life, repent immediately! "The Lord will soon be here! "

"Jesus, I have expected You before and I expect You today! May the day that You return be one on which I am waiting and looking for You to come back. Help me to stand strong in my faith in spite of all the problems, difficulties and even suffering I may have today. Lord, I know you are beautiful beyond description, and I know that one day soon my eyes will see Your face! Come quickly, Lord Jesus. Amen."

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Sunday, February 23, 2014

There’s a Great Day Coming!


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A good road will be there,

and it will be named

“God's Sacred Highway.”

It will be for God's people;

no one unfit to worship God

will walk on that road.

And no fools can travel

on that highway.


No lions or other wild animals

will come near that road;

only those the Lord has saved

will travel there.


The people the Lord has rescued

will come back singing

as they enter Zion.

Happiness will be a crown

everyone will always wear.

They will celebrate and shout

because all sorrows and worries

will be gone far away.

Isaiah 35:8-10

The road here on earth as we travel through this life is very hard. Sorrows and worries and pain are all part of the journey. I have never met a man or woman who has not suffered while living here on earth.

Thank God that this life and the road we travel here on earth is not the end of the story! If it were there would indeed be no hope for the future.

These words delivered to us through the prophet Isaiah so many years ago are a reminder that we can and should get excited about the future those who are saved will have in Heaven! I especially like the line that says "Happiness will be a crown everyone will always wear." Just imagine that everyone you meet every day is happy. No one is worried or hurting or sick and no one ever has a "complaint."

Also imagine a world where there are no seat belts to keep you safe and no warnings about things that might hurt you. Ponder a place where no one ever gets sick and doctors are not needed. And I think the one that I find most appealing is that Heaven is a place where every word that is spoken is true! Truth will not be a goal. Truth will be the very air we breath in Heaven.

"Lord Jesus, I want to be even more excited about the prospect of Heaven. Work in my mind and heart today and help me think about what it will be like when that GREAT DAY comes! Praise Your Name now and forevermore. Amen."

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Foot in the Door of Eternity!

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Each of you is now a new person. You are becoming more and more like your Creator, and you will understand him better. It doesn't matter if you are a Greek or a Jew, or if you are circumcised or not. You may even be a barbarian or a Scythian, and you may be a slave or a free person. Yet Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us.

God loves you and has chosen you as his own special people. So be gentle, kind, humble, meek, and patient.  Put up with each other, and forgive anyone who does you wrong, just as Christ has forgiven you. Love is more important than anything else. It is what ties everything completely together.

Colossians 3:10-14

"Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so!" That simple verse from a children's song is perhaps the most profound statement ever made. Life as a follower of Jesus Christ is the process of understanding that truth a little more each day.

It is important to note that the Bible doesn't say that Jesus "likes you!" Every parent knows that there are lots of times when you don't particularly "like" your child, but you love him or her just the same. Jesus never likes it when I sin, but He loves me just the same.

What does the love of Jesus do for me? How can His love for me change me into the person that He intends for me to be? When someone loves me, I am deeply moved to make that person happy by how I live. That is most often seen in the life of a child who wants his parents to watch him and be pleased with the things he does. "Look at me, Mamma" can be heard on every children's playground around the world!

When you live your life with the purpose of making Jesus happy, you have begun to touch the essence of God's purpose for your existence. When Jesus is happy with the way I live, then I am also bathed in peace and joy no matter what is happening in the world around me.

God's love for me changes me and my love for Him changes me as well! When I am immersed in the love of Jesus my foot is in the door of Eternity waiting for Him to throw that door wide open and take me home!

"Dear Jesus, thank You for loving me even when You don't like the way I live. Change me into the person You want me to be that I may be ready for Your return. Come quickly Lord Jesus. Amen."

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Suffering and Sin!


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You don't gain anything by being punished for some wrong you have done. But God will bless you, if you have to suffer for doing something good. After all, God chose you to suffer as you follow in the footsteps of Christ, who set an example by suffering for you.

Christ did not sin

or ever tell a lie.


Although he was abused,

he never tried to get even.

And when he suffered,

he made no threats.

Instead, he had faith in God,

who judges fairly.


Christ carried the burden

of our sins.

He was nailed to the cross,

so we would stop sinning

and start living right.

By his cuts and bruises

you are healed.


You had wandered away

like sheep.

Now you have returned

to the one

who is your shepherd

and protector.

1 Peter 2:20-25

If you are like Jesus, you will not sin, but you will suffer. I think the most upsetting thing about sin is that when you sin you are doing something that Jesus never did. And if you suffer for doing something wrong, that suffering is not like the suffering experienced by Jesus. Jesus suffered for our sin, not for His own.

When a mother delivers a child the suffering is all for her to bear. When we are born again, the suffering belongs to Jesus. I have never heard anyone claim that it is painful for the child when he is born. And when a man is born again it is because of the birth pains that Jesus felt on the Cross!

So as followers of Jesus we do suffer and sometimes suffer greatly because of the sins of others, especially those that we love dearly! That is also a way Jesus suffers for me. Jesus sees every foolish thing I do and knows where it will lead. Jesus not only paid the price for my sin, but He loves me and suffers because He knows how I will hurt!

So if I am like Jesus I will suffer because of other people's sin.

"Lord Jesus, thank You forever for suffering and dying to pay the price for my sins. Your love for me is beyond my ability to understand, but I thank You for it. Help me to love others even as You loved me! Praise Your Name forever. Amen."

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

National Repentance!

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My message today is the same one I commanded the earlier prophets to speak to Jerusalem and its villages when they were prosperous, and when all of Judah, including the Southern Desert and the hill country, was filled with people.

So once again, I, the Lord All-Powerful, tell you, “See that justice is done and be kind and merciful to one another! Don't mistreat widows or orphans or foreigners or anyone who is poor, and stop making plans to hurt each other.”

But everyone who heard those prophets, stubbornly refused to obey. Instead, they turned their backs on everything my Spirit had commanded the earlier prophets to preach. So I, the Lord, became angry and said, “You people paid no attention when I called out to you, and now I'll pay no attention when you call out to me.”

That's why I came with a whirlwind and scattered them among foreign nations, leaving their lovely country empty of people and in ruins.

Zechariah 7:7-14

When God speaks to a nation that is rebelling against Him and has banned prayer and the Bible from the public life of the country, what does He say?  There is no doubt that He does not speak warm words of comfort and peace.  God speaks words of repentance and warning to a country that has turned from Him!

The problem with the United States is not one of leadership.  United States citizens elect their leaders and continue to say that godliness is not an qualifying characteristic for men or women who want to be national leaders!  The difficulties with the U.S. are not the result of conservative or liberal fiscal policies.  We cannot budget our way out of the consequences of turning our backs on God.

The answer for this nation, and by the way, all nations is Jesus Christ!  If a nation turns it's collective and individual hearts back to Jesus Christ and in repentance falls down and worships Him, there will be a revival not only of the spirit of that nation, but also a revival of everything that made that nation great before their fall!

But don't be fooled!  Calling out to God for help without first turning to Him in repentance will not work.  It is only after real repentance that revival comes.  Otherwise God will pay no attention to us when we call out to Him.

"Lord Jesus, we have turned our hearts away from You and banned You from the life of our country.  May we be about the business of repenting of that national sin today that we may call out to You for the help that can only come from Almighty God.  May that repentance begin with me as I once again make You, Lord the most important person in my life.  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen."

Monday, February 17, 2014

New Clothes!

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People's desires make them give in to immoral ways, filthy thoughts, and shameful deeds. They worship idols, practice witchcraft, hate others, and are hard to get along with. People become jealous, angry, and selfish. They not only argue and cause trouble, but they are envious. They get drunk, carry on at wild parties, and do other evil things as well. I told you before, and I am telling you again: No one who does these things will share in the blessings of God's kingdom.

God's Spirit makes us loving, happy, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled. There is no law against behaving in any of these ways.And because we belong to Christ Jesus, we have killed our selfish feelings and desires. God's Spirit has given us life, and so we should follow the Spirit. But don't be conceited or make others jealous by claiming to be better than they are.

Galatians 5:19-26

If you are a follower of Jesus Christ and do not walk in the ways of the world it is very easy to be tempted to think that you are better than the people who are still caught in the world's trap!

Were you released from the pull of this world and of the sin that "so easily besets you" because of your great strength or because of the sacrifice of Jesus? The terrors of the world held you firmly in their grip until Jesus Himself opened the door of Heaven for all those who believe on Him and confess His name. Once you were buried with Jesus then you could also rise to walk a new life!

So don't look at those who are still under the control of Satan and think that you are better than they are. You are not! The difference between you and the world is Jesus Christ! You have given your heart to Jesus and they have not yet given up their lives to Him.

If you know Jesus then you can be sure that the reason you are alive today is because there is still someone you will encounter who needs to meet Jesus. Make it your goal today that everyone who crosses your path will see Jesus Christ and not just a mere human being. Your job may simply be to show others what it is like to be clothed in the righteousness of Jesus.

"Lord Jesus thank you letting me wear Your Righteousness and not the filthy rags that I had before! May Your Name be praised forever and ever. Amen."

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Instead of Trusting God!

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You people may be strong

and brag about your sins,

but God can be trusted

day after day.


You plan brutal crimes,

and your lying words cut

like a sharp razor.


You would rather do evil

than good, and tell lies

than speak the truth.


You love to say cruel things,

and your words are a trap.


God will destroy you forever!

He will grab you and drag you

from your homes.

You will be uprooted

and left to die.


When good people see

this fearsome sight,

they will laugh and say,


“Just look at them now!

Instead of trusting God,

they trusted their wealth

and their cruelty.”


But I am like an olive tree

growing in God's house,

and I can count on his love

forever and ever.


I will always thank God

for what he has done;

I will praise his good name

when his people meet.

Psalm 52

I don't watch or listen to the news nearly as much as I used to, and there is a reason. When I do I see and hear people bragging about their sins. I learn about brutal crimes and hear lying words that cut like a sharp razor. Even the nation's leaders would "rather do evil than good, and tell lies than speak the truth."

I am surely distressed by the wickedness that seems to be in control not just of my country, but the entire world. But Psalm 52 has a warning and a message for those who reject Almighty God and His Righteousness. Let me read Psalm 52:5 again while you listen to God's warning and message for those who oppose Him.

"God will destroy you forever! He will grab you and drag you from your homes. You will be uprooted and left to die."

They trusted their wealth and their cruelty instead of trusting God and they will not escape justice from the Almighty, unless they turn to Jesus Christ and make Him The Lord of their lives!

"Lord Jesus, help me to remember that I have nothing to fear from those who choose to do evil and tell lies. You are the Power above all powers and The Lord beyond all lords. May You be praised now and forever! Amen."

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Your Will Not Mine!

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At that time King Herod caused terrible suffering for some members of the church. He ordered soldiers to cut off the head of James, the brother of John.  When Herod saw that this pleased the Jewish people, he had Peter arrested during the Festival of Thin Bread. He put Peter in jail and ordered four squads of soldiers to guard him. Herod planned to put him on trial in public after the festival.

While Peter was being kept in jail, the church never stopped praying to God for him.

The night before Peter was to be put on trial, he was asleep and bound by two chains. A soldier was guarding him on each side, and two other soldiers were guarding the entrance to the jail. Suddenly an angel from the Lord appeared, and light flashed around in the cell. The angel poked Peter in the side and woke him up. Then he said, “Quick! Get up!”

The chains fell off his hands, and the angel said, “Get dressed and put on your sandals.” Peter did what he was told. Then the angel said, “Now put on your coat and follow me.”

Acts 12:1-8

Why did the Lord send an angel to rescue Peter but allowed the head of James the brother of John to be severed by Herod?  The answer I have heard all my life was that there were lots of people praying for Peter.  Had they not prayed for James?  Actually we don't know much of the story of the murder of James, but we know that no angel stopped the execution!

From the reaction of those who were praying we can clearly see that they did not believe Peter would be rescued from his plight.  When Peter showed up at the prayer meeting after being miraculously released from the jail they initially didn't even believe it was him.  

There are at least two very important lessons from this story.  First of all, we know it was God's will for Peter to be released from the jail.  God sent His angel to break Peter out of prison!  Secondly, we can know that when we pray according to God's will the thing we are praying for will happen!  

It apparently was not God's will that James be spared, but it was that Peter not be killed at this time!  Am I so foolish as to think that it would be better for God to change His mind and agree with me, or for me to change my mind and agree with Him?

In the Old Testament we read about God giving the people of Israel a king even though He knew and told them so that it would not be the best thing for them.  Because of that the people suffered greatly for many years!

God can see everything.  He can see the past, the present and the future.  God knows what will happen if He answers your prayer according to your will instead of His.  So I must ask myself this question: "Am I willing to pray that His will be done instead of mine?"  When I humbly do that I am opening the door for the greatest blessings of all.  

"Lord Jesus, I want to pray according to You will. I want to desire the things that You desire and I want to seek the things that You seek.  May my prayers be according to Your will that all may one day see how Wise and Glorious and Mighty You are now, have always been and always will be!  To You may  all praise be given forever!  Amen." 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Rich in Faith!

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My friends, if you have faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, you won't treat some people better than others. Suppose a rich person wearing fancy clothes and a gold ring comes to one of your meetings. And suppose a poor person dressed in worn-out clothes also comes. You must not give the best seat to the one in fancy clothes and tell the one who is poor to stand at the side or sit on the floor. This is the same as saying that some people are better than others, and you would be acting like a crooked judge.

My dear friends, pay attention. God has given a lot of faith to the poor people in this world. God has also promised them a share in his kingdom that he will give to everyone who loves him.

James 2:1-5

If you are poor you can know one thing for certain. Being poor in the material things of this world does not stop you from being rich in faith! However being rich in the things of this world can work mightily against your faith! The Bible even says that it is hard for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven!

Every "get rich quick" scheme assumes that everyone would like to be rich in money and what money can buy. But you need to know that getting rich can hinder your life of faith in Jesus. Many people spend their lives trying to accumulate wealth and just hope that they have enough faith to get them through.

Instead, let the focus of your life be growing your faith and trust God to take care of the things that you need! If you look at how much money you have and you decide that you indeed are poor, then rejoice! You are in the perfect position to become the richest man of all. Faith in God does not need money, and in fact it works best without it! Faith in God needs desperate situations to prove that it is indeed real.

And if you are rich, work diligently at trusting God and not your money! Perhaps that is the underlying motive of putting the phrase "In God We Trust" on U.S. dollars and coins. So instead of spending time today trying to grow your supply of money, look at how you can grow your faith! Perhaps the best place to start is not in the "big issues" in your life, but rather the small ones. Trust God for your every need today.

"Lord Jesus, I do so need to trust You more and my money less! May my faith in You grow today as I trust You to supply all my needs, whether or not I have money! I do Lord want to be RICH IN FAITH no matter what it costs! Amen."

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Last Man to Come to Jesus!

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The Lord says:

“My thoughts and my ways

are not like yours.

Just as the heavens

are higher than the earth,

my thoughts and my ways

are higher than yours.

“Rain and snow fall from the sky.

But they don't return

without watering the earth

that produces seeds to plant

and grain to eat.

That's how it is with my words.

They don't return to me

without doing everything

I send them to do.”

Isaiah 55:8-11

The President of the United States did not realize that the camera's were rolling when he said(this is a paraphrase), "That's the thing about being President, I can do whatever I want to do!" This statement caused a firestorm of comment from those who want to remind the President that he is not God and that he can only do what the Constitution of the United States gives him the power to do.

But God is not the President and is not limited by the Constitution. When God speaks a Word it will be accomplished. God can do whatever He wants to do!

So why has God not ended the conflict of Good and Evil and stopped this painful and bloody war? He has not because He knows that there is someone who will turn his or her heart to Him today! The task of bringing men to Jesus is not complete and He will not "end it all" until they are all in the sheep pen.

That is indeed the urgency of evangelism. Who will be the last man saved? Who will bow down before Jesus and then open the door for Jesus' return? Although we have the free will to accept of reject Jesus, He knows who will turn to Him and He knows who will be the last one to come!

It may be you! If you have not turned your heart to Jesus Christ, He may be waiting for you to come to Him so He can bring everything to a final conclusion on this earth.

"Lord Jesus, until You come may I have the high privilege of bringing others to You. And may I see men and women turn their hearts to You until the last one comes and You return. Praise Your Name. Amen."

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Not Your Sin Enabler!

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Then I heard what seemed to be a large crowd that sounded like a roaring flood and loud thunder all mixed together. They were saying,

“Praise the Lord!

Our Lord God All-Powerful

now rules as king.

So we will be glad and happy

and give him praise.

The wedding day of the Lamb

is here,

and his bride is ready.

She will be given

a wedding dress

made of pure

and shining linen.

This linen stands for

the good things

God's people have done.”

Then the angel told me, “Put this in writing. God will bless everyone who is invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.” The angel also said, “These things God has said are true.”

Revelation 19:6-9

There was a silly radio and eventually television quiz show called Truth or Consequences. If the contestants could not answer a trivia question in just a couple of seconds, Beulah the Buzzer would sound there would be consequences in the form of some kind of "off the wall" stunt. Many people on the show did not answer the question correctly even if they knew the answer because the "consequences" were so much fun! And in the end everything worked out fine with contestants getting prize money for their appearance.

Life today is not a silly game show, although many people live like it is. They believe that they can abandon or simply ignore the TRUTH because the CONSEQUENCES will be a lot of fun! Children believe that parents will provide all they need in spite of their foolish decisions. Parents believe the government will provide for them if they are not diligent. And even Christians believe that once you say you believe in Jesus, you can sin as much as you want without consequences!

The grace of God is certainly amazing, but Jesus did not die to become your Sin Enabler! He did not die so you can sin even more. Jesus died so you will not be mastered by sin and so you can walk daily in His righteousness, doing the things that He desires for your life.

Jesus desires that you walk in the Truth and not suffer the earthly Consequences of sin. When I sin, I need to recognize that Jesus not only can and will forgive me, but that He suffered real pain for that specific sin!

"Lord Jesus, thank You for Your sacrifice for my sins and for Your forgiveness. Lord, when I am tempted to sin help me to remember not just Your grace, but also Your suffering and pain. Help me to live a Holy life today even as I praise Your Holy Name forever! Amen.”

Monday, February 10, 2014

God Made Me!

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The Lord has said:

“These people praise me

with their words,

but they never really

think about me.

They worship me by repeating

rules made up by humans.


So once again I will do things

that shock and amaze them,

and I will destroy the wisdom

of those who claim to know

and understand.”


You are in for trouble,

if you try to hide your plans

from the Lord!

Or if you think what you do

in the dark can't be seen.


You have it all backwards.

A clay dish doesn't say

to the potter,

“You didn't make me.

You don't even know how.”

Isaiah 29:13-16

Today there are millions of people who fight against God by claiming that He doesn't exist. They lift their voices high to the heavens and declare that God did not make them! They suppose that their existence is the result of some great cosmic accident which can be blamed on no one! Truthfully, a small child can see the foolishness of such a proclamation!

Then there are those who praise God with their words but never really think about Him. More than anyone else, these folks deceive themselves. They say that they know and understand God, but they live by the wisdom of the world and not the precepts of God!

Some people believe God exists, but they "try to hide their plans from Him." They categorically reject the concept of "I am with you always." They want God around in case of an emergency, but they don't want God knowing what is going on in their hearts and in their lives.

"Lord Jesus, I confess to You and everyone else that You are the Potter and I am the clay. I so often forget that You made me according your own design and by Your will. Help me today to think about You. I can't hide my plans or anything else from You. And may You be praised forever. Amen."

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Every Moment of Forever!

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After Jesus had finished speaking to his disciples, he looked up toward heaven and prayed:

Father, the time has come for you to bring glory to your Son, in order that he may bring glory to you. And you gave him power over all people, so he would give eternal life to everyone you give him.  Eternal life is to know you, the only true God, and to know Jesus Christ, the one you sent.

John 17:1-3

Eternal life is a never ending relationship with a never ending God! On this earth as human beings we know beginnings and we know endings. That's the way everything goes. But the relationship you have with God through Jesus Christ begins here and never, ever ends! As time is counted you will know Jesus two hundred years from now and you will know Him 200 million years in the future! Oh let's don't stop there. Why not remind yourself that you will know Him and be living in His presence 200 trillion years in the future!

I think I am really doing something if I ponder what Heaven will be like when I arrive in God's presence. But what will it be like in another trillion years or so? If you know Jesus you will come to know the answer to that question.

The truth is that your future with Jesus Christ is too amazing to even think about here on this earth. What will it be like? Only Jesus knows, but He wants us to be there with Him in a few trillion years. Oh and that is just the beginning of Eternity!

"Lord Jesus, I confess to you that I am not even able to think about Eternity with You. But Lord I want to be there for every moment of forever! And I want to praise Your Name for all of forever! Amen."

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Do You Know Jesus?

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“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord! ’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of My Father in heaven. On that day many will say to Me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in Your name, drive out demons in Your name, and do many miracles in Your name? ’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you! Depart from Me, you lawbreakers!’

Matthew 7:21-23

Someone has called these three verses the saddest words in all of scripture. Here is someone, in fact Jesus says it will be many people who think they are followers of Jesus and on good terms with Him, but Jesus tells them to "depart" because He never knew them!

Do you know Jesus, or do you simply hope you know Him? There is a big difference. You could be an expert on the facts of someone's life and even write a biography without ever meeting that person even once. And you can know all about Jesus Christ without ever meeting Him.

The goal of the Christian life is not to know more about Jesus than anyone else, the goal is simply to know Him and walk with Him every day. Here is why these words of Jesus are so very disturbing. Jesus says that you can prophesy or preach in His name, drive out demons in His name and even do miracles in His name without ever really knowing Him!

Are you known by others for your great preaching and awesome displays of God's power? Those things alone do not mean that you know Jesus! When you know Jesus, He is with you always and you talk to Him about everything. When you know Jesus you hear His voice every day and the Holy Spirit guides your steps and provides the comfort that you need. When you know Jesus you find your peace in Him and not in the world. When you know Jesus you embrace Him and His will for your life because you love Him and you know that He loves you.

"Lord Jesus, if You want me to preach in Your Name along with casting out demons and doing miracles then I am willing. But Lord I am not willing to live this life without knowing You. Help me Jesus to turn off the world around me today so I can see Your face and hear Your voice every step of way! Amen."

Friday, February 7, 2014

Mind of God

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God's Spirit has shown you everything. His Spirit finds out everything, even what is deep in the mind of God. You are the only one who knows what is in your own mind, and God's Spirit is the only one who knows what is in God's mind.  But God has given us his Spirit. This is why we don't think the same way that the people of this world think. This is also why we can recognize the blessings God has given us.

Every word we speak was taught to us by God's Spirit, not by human wisdom. And this same Spirit helps us teach spiritual things to spiritual people. This is why only someone who has God's Spirit can understand spiritual blessings. Anyone who doesn't have God's Spirit thinks these blessings are foolish.

1 Corinthians 2:10-14

It is really annoying when someone thinks they know more than everyone else. The "Know it All" usually has an attitude that makes you want to be around someone who is "more normal." Then there is the person who actually does know more than other people. Personally I, very much want to be around a person who really knows more than I do, especially if they know more about something I care about.

I have a friend who knows lots of stuff about electronics. It seems that every time I talk with Wayne I learn something very valuable about my "hobby." My friend is not someone who thinks he knows more than I do, he actually does. But I am learning what he knows!

Now here is where it gets really amazing! The Holy Spirit knows what is deep in the mind of God and as Christians we have the Holy Spirit in our hearts. Then the Holy Spirit proceeds to teach us about "Spiritual Things!"

It is like when a man is "born again" he suddenly can speak a new language. This new language can be understood by other Christians but by no one else! Then the world around you hears the words you speak, but they have no idea what they mean. To the world, you seem to be a babbling fool. So as a follower of Jesus Christ don't be surprised when people who do no know Jesus think you have lost your mind!

"Lord Jesus, thank You for sending the Holy Spirit to teach me the things that only those who love You can know. May I see and know more today of the mind of God. And may I along with all those who love You, praise Your Name forever! Amen."

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Pray Beyond Your Imagination!

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I kneel in prayer to the Father. All beings in heaven and on earth receive their life from him.  God is wonderful and glorious. I pray that his Spirit will make you become strong followers and that Christ will live in your hearts because of your faith. Stand firm and be deeply rooted in his love.  I pray that you and all of God’s people will understand what is called wide or long or high or deep.   I want you to know all about Christ’s love, although it is too wonderful to be measured. Then your lives will be filled with all that God is.

I pray that Christ Jesus and the church will forever bring praise to God. His power at work in us can do far more than we dare ask or imagine. Amen.

Ephesians 3:14-21

Did you know that you can’t pray for or even imagine something that the power of God is not able to accomplish?  That means God can time travel or cause me to time travel.  God can beam me up like the writers of Star Trek imagined.  God can confuse the minds of a country’s leaders and bring it down by the foolish decisions of formerly wise people.  God can empower simple people to know and do great things which are far beyond anyone’s expectations.

God can make a poor man rich, or a rich man poor in only a moment!  God can reveal the secrets of the universe to the lowliest of men and He can withhold those same secrets from the man with the highest I.Q. 

I’m sure you can add many things to that list, but before you do consider the four words I have not mentioned.  His power “at work in us” can do far more that we dare ask or imagine!  When the power of God is working through you there is no limit to what He can accomplish!  It is never too late.  Remember that Moses was 80 years old when the power of God working in Him parted the waters of the Red Sea!  Abraham was 100 when Isaac was born. 

I would challenge you today and the challenge is for me as well.  Pray beyond your imagination!  Pray for the “impossible” and trust God to work through you to do it!  The difference between an ordinary believer and a “great saint” is simply the fact that the one who is considered great has learned to pray for the impossible and then watch God Himself accomplish it!

“Lord Jesus, give me the faith today to pray beyond my imagination and trust You for doing the impossible through me by Your power!  And may You be praised forever. Amen.”

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

One With Jesus!

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I won't leave you like orphans. I will come back to you.  In a little while the people of this world won't be able to see me, but you will see me. And because I live, you will live. Then you will know I am one with the Father. You will know you are one with me, and I am one with you.  If you love me, you will do what I have said, and my Father will love you. I will also love you and show you what I am like.

John 14:18-21

When I read these verses my mind spirals into a place of trying to understand a truth that cannot be understood. Jesus says that He is "one with God" the Father and then He says that as His follower I am "one with Him!" What does that mean?

Remember when Jesus told the disciples that if they had seen Him, they had seen the Father. So can it be said that if I am "one with Jesus" then if someone has seen me they have seen Jesus as well?

The "relationship" we have with Jesus Christ is not like an earthly human friendship. It is more like a marriage where "the two become one." Have you seen the 50th wedding anniversary pictures in the paper? The couples have looked each other in the face for so many years that their expressions are almost mirror images of each other.

Living with Jesus literally in your heart as you are filled with the Holy Spirit changes you into His likeness. You don't become like Jesus by doing things, even wonderful things. You become like Jesus by staring into His face moment by moment, day after day and even year after year!

The most precious thing about prayer is that it is a time when you focus on Jesus without interruption. You can bring Him your confusion and see His expression of clarity. You can bring Him your sorrow and receive His comfort. You bring Him your joy and He rejoices with You! But in all of those things and more you can sit quietly and feel Him close by your side.

"Lord Jesus, You have promised to love me and show me what You are like! Touch me today with who You are in my heart. And Lord, let me see just a little more of what You are like! Praise Your Holy Name forever! Amen."

Monday, February 3, 2014

Eternal Punishment

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Right after those days of suffering,

“The sun will become dark,

and the moon

will no longer shine.

The stars will fall,

and the powers in the sky

will be shaken.”

Then a sign will appear in the sky. And there will be the Son of Man. All nations on earth will weep when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. At the sound of a loud trumpet, he will send his angels to bring his chosen ones together from all over the earth.

Matthew 24:29-31

For those who have rejected Jesus Christ, His coming back to earth will be the worst thing that has ever happened to them. They will suddenly know for certain that not accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord will separate them from God and all of His blessings forever. They will realize, tragically too late, that the "Bible thumping misfits" were right.

If a man came to your door and warned you of a killer tornado bearing down on your house would you reject his message because he didn't deliver the message with proper grammar, or because he looked like one of the Duck Dynasty men?

The truth of the power of Almighty God and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ may not be "cool" but it is accurate and one day, maybe soon you will believe it! That is without a doubt.

Is the Love of God real and powerful as well? Oh yes it is and when you turn to Jesus you will come to know that Love in amazing ways. But don't ignore the reality of Hell and the possibility of Eternal Damnation! Should you be afraid of Hell? Most certainly you should!

In truth there is only one choice that you make while living on this earth that has any lasting importance. You can choose Jesus, to follow and love Him or you can choose Hell by rejecting Jesus Christ! You can't choose both Heaven and Hell.

"Lord Jesus, give me the courage to speak Your truth boldly to a world that doesn't want to believe in Eternal Punishment, so that many more men and women will rejoice to see You coming in the clouds! And may You be praised forever! Amen."

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Sunrise of Jesus

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Let's return to the Lord.

He has torn us to shreds,

but he will bandage our wounds

and make us well.

In two or three days

he will heal us

and restore our strength

that we may live with him.

Let's do our best

to know the Lord.

His coming is as certain

as the morning sun;

he will refresh us like rain

renewing the earth

in the springtime.

Hosea 6:1-3

As I write these words, the Sun is scheduled to peak over the horizon just over three hours from now. No one on earth can stop the Sunrise! Right now it is very dark and there is no sign of the coming Sunrise even if I stare toward the East! But the Sun is coming and you can "bet your life" on that truth!

Also as I write these words, the Son of God, Jesus Christ is scheduled to return to earth. No one knows the timing of His return, but you can be certain that He will come! With the "Sunrise of Jesus" there actually are signs that the time may be very near. The Bible has many references to the things that will be happening on the earth just before Jesus returns and it seems that at least some of those things are happening right now.

We can guess the timing of Jesus' return to the earth, but we can know for sure that He will return. His return is as sure as the sunrise that will come here now less than three hours from now!

Make sure your "To Do" list today includes an item that says "Prepare for the return of Jesus!"

"Dear Lord Jesus, I know You will return and harvest those who are Your followers. Help me Lord be ready for that day today and on every day that I live for the rest of my life! And may I praise Your Name forever! Amen."

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Look for the Fire!

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The Lord your God commands you to love him and to serve him with all your heart and soul. If you obey him, he will send rain at the right seasons, so you will have more than enough food, wine, and olive oil, and there will be plenty of grass for your cattle.

But watch out! You will be tempted to turn your backs on the Lord. And if you worship other gods, the Lord will become angry and keep the rain from falling. Nothing will grow in your fields, and you will die and disappear from the good land that the Lord is giving you.

Memorize these laws and think about them. Write down copies and tie them to your wrists and your foreheads to help you obey them. Teach them to your children. Talk about them all the time—whether you're at home or walking along the road or going to bed at night, or getting up in the morning. Write them on the door frames of your homes and on your town gates. Then you and your descendants will live a long time in the land that the Lord promised your ancestors. Your families will live there as long as the sky is above the earth.

Deuteronomy 11:13-21

Today is the first day of February in 2014 and there is a very serious drought underway in California. One report says that "2013 was the state's driest calendar year since records started being kept, and this year is heading in the same direction." And yet we stubbornly refuse to look to the Creator of the earth itself for any help. God says that He is the one who can send the rain or withhold the rain and that He does that in response to the hearts of men! When men love Him, serve Him and obey Him the rains come and they come at the right time!

The United States has declared through it's laws and courts that "we will stand against the laws of God and His desires. We will honor that which He abhors and we will persecute those He loves." Then we are shocked that we are having such suffering.

The difference between Sodom and the United States is growing smaller all the time and unless we repent the final outcome is likely to be the same as well! Remember the "mercy" of God can cleanse the earth as well as nourish it!

"Lord Jesus, You have revealed Your heart and the holiness and purity that only come from You. We have rejected You and the ways that You teach and still we expect You to send the rain. Lord, forgive us, but convict us first of our terrible sin of ignoring Your will and Your ways. Amen."