Friday, June 30, 2017

God Invades Your Heart!

I pray that God will be kind to you and will let you live in perfect peace! May you keep learning more and more about God and our Lord Jesus.  We have everything we need to live a life that pleases God. It was all given to us by God's own power, when we learned that he had invited us to share in his wonderful goodness.  God made great and marvelous promises, so that his nature would become part of us. Then we could escape our evil desires and the corrupt influences of this world.

2 Peter 1: 2 - 4

How do we escape our own evil desires and the corrupt influences of this world?  Dedication, determination and self control may hold sin back for a while, but the only thing that truly works is when the nature of God becomes part of us! 

When your heart is transformed into the image of Jesus Christ, you will find that your life is very different.  You will know it!  Those who are the closest to you will see it for sure.  And even those people who you meet casually will sense that there is something about your life that is not like everyone else.  

Evangelism happens when you answer the question: “Why are you the way you are?”

When the Nature of God invades your heart you don’t have to try to be like Jesus, you ARE like Jesus!  The world will hate you, even as it hated the Lord.  And the lost will be drawn to the hope they see in how you live your life.

God enables you to live a life that pleases Him as you “share in His wonderful goodness.”  When you give your heart to Jesus, you put yourself on His “Potter’s Wheel” where He will shape you into the person He created you to be!  

“Lord Jesus, may the Nature of God invade my heart today, and may He shape me into a vessel that looks just like You!  Praise Your Holy Name now and forever.  Amen.”


Thursday, June 29, 2017

Your Gold is for What?

But I know that the king of Egypt won't let you go unless something forces him to.  So I will use my mighty power to perform all kinds of miracles and strike down the Egyptians. Then the king will send you away.  After I punish the Egyptians, they will be so afraid of you that they will give you anything you want. You are my people, and I will let you take many things with you when you leave the land of Egypt.  Every Israelite woman will go to her Egyptian neighbors or to any Egyptian woman living in her house. She will ask them for gold and silver jewelry and for their finest clothes. The Egyptians will give them to you, and you will put these fine things on your sons and daughters. You will carry all this away when you leave Egypt.

Exodus 3: 19 - 22

What did the Israelites do with the Gold that they took from their neighbors just before they left Egypt and crossed the Red Sea into the desert?  For the most part Gold is not a useful commodity in the desert.  But for those who were led by Moses out of Egyptian slavery the Gold would be used for one of two things.  It would either provide the covering for the Ark of the Covenant or it would be the stuff for making the Golden Calf that they worshipped while Moses was on the Mountain, getting the Ten Commandments!

The Ark of the Covenant was a glorious use of the Gold and the other was a ghastly perversion of what God desired!

So when you begin your journey as a follower of Jesus, you, like the children of Israel have a choice of what to do with the Gold that God has given you as you cross the Red Sea into the Desert.  You can use your wealth to Glorify God or you can make a Golden Calf and worship it on your journey to the Promised Land.  

Like the Israelites, the Golden Calf will bring much suffering and trouble to your life, but letting your Gold be used to cover the Ark will fill your heart with the Peace of God no matter what happens!

“Lord Jesus, show me today how to use the Gold that You have given me to Glorify and Praise Your Holy Name.  Amen.”

Thursday, June 22, 2017

The Path of God is Jesus!

I offer you my heart, LORD God, and I trust you. Don't make me ashamed or let enemies defeat me.  Don't disappoint any of your worshipers, but disappoint all deceitful liars.  Show me your paths and teach me to follow; guide me by your truth and instruct me. You keep me safe, and I always trust you.  Please, LORD, remember, you have always been patient and kind.  Forget each wrong I did when I was young. Show how truly kind you are and remember me.  You are honest and merciful, and you teach sinners how to follow your path.  You lead humble people to do what is right and to stay on your path.

Psalm 25: 1 - 9

There is a path that God wants you to walk!  When you walk that path your heart will be at peace even if the way is rocky and storms come at you from every side!  On the path of the Lord you will sense the urging of the Holy Spirit to keep on walking!  

When your feet are on the path of God, you also place yourself in the center of the target for Satan’s arrows!  Don’t think it strange that you will be challenged at every turn. Think it strange if you are not opposed as you walk that way!

Walking through life without being on a path is difficult to say the least.  Trying to climb a mountain without following a path will often end in disaster.  Traveling through this life without putting your feet on the path that God has given you will lead you to an eternal tragedy!  Don't forget that the Path of God is Jesus Christ!  

“Lord Jesus, show me the path that You want me to walk today.  And Jesus, help me keep my feet on that path today and every day for the rest of my life here on earth.  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Jesus is my Wings!

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: 16 - 20

When you know “all about Christ’s love,” then your life will be filled with all that God is!  It really is hard to image what that means.  Like the lowly caterpillar who morphs into a butterfly, as a follower of Jesus you will discover that He has given you wings to fly above the cares of this world!

Before Jesus touched your life, you had no idea what it would be like to fly above the world and soar with the eagles!  You see Jesus is not the wind beneath my wings, He IS MY WINGS!  This life of a disciple has nothing to do with how I change my life, but it has everything to do with how He changes it!  

When your life is filled with all that God is, you will see and hear things differently, and you will run toward the raging spiritual battle knowing full well that you are armed and ready to defeat the Devil by the Spirit of God!

“Lord Jesus, teach me about Your love so that my life will be filled with all that God is!  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”

Monday, June 19, 2017

You are a Seed!

Some of you have asked, "How will the dead be raised to life? What kind of bodies will they have?"  Don't be foolish. A seed must die before it can sprout from the ground.  Wheat seeds and all other seeds look different from the sprouts that come up.  This is because God gives everything the kind of body he wants it to have.  People, animals, birds, and fish are each made of flesh, but none of them are alike.  Everything in the heavens has a body, and so does everything on earth. But each one is very different from all the others.  The sun isn't like the moon, the moon isn't like the stars, and each star is different.  That's how it will be when our bodies are raised to life. These bodies will die, but the bodies that are raised will live forever.  These ugly and weak bodies will become beautiful and strong.  As surely as there are physical bodies, there are spiritual bodies. And our physical bodies will be changed into spiritual bodies.

1 Corinthians 15: 35 - 44

Your physical body is like the seed of a giant redwood tree!  Even though the redwood seed has the potential to sprout into the largest and one of the longest living plants on earth, it is, as a seed not very impressive.  

Like a seed, our bodies die and are planted in the ground.  But when the resurrection comes for those who know Jesus Christ as their Lord, the spiritual body that will come forth will be truly amazing!  The next time you see a large tree of any kind, think about the seed from which it came and remember that you as a follower of Jesus are now just a seed!  But when Jesus returns you will become the Giant Redwood He has destined you to be!

“Lord Jesus, thank You for the promise that You will change me into the person You created me to be!  Praise Your Holy Name now and forever.  Amen.”

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Earthly Wisdom in the Pursuit of God!

As God says in the Scriptures, "I will destroy the wisdom of all who claim to be wise. I will confuse those who think they know so much."  What happened to those wise people? What happened to those experts in the Scriptures? What happened to the ones who think they have all the answers? Didn't God show that the wisdom of this world is foolish?  God was wise and decided not to let the people of this world use their wisdom to learn about him. Instead, God chose to save only those who believe the foolish message we preach.  Jews ask for miracles, and Greeks want something that sounds wise.  But we preach that Christ was nailed to a cross. Most Jews have problems with this, and most Gentiles think it is foolish.  Our message is God's power and wisdom for the Jews and the Greeks that he has chosen.  Even when God is foolish, he is wiser than everyone else, and even when God is weak, he is stronger than everyone else.  My dear friends, remember what you were when God chose you. The people of this world didn't think that many of you were wise. Only a few of you were in places of power, and not many of you came from important families.  But God chose the foolish things of this world to put the wise to shame. He chose the weak things of this world to put the powerful to shame.  What the world thinks is worthless, useless, and nothing at all is what God has used to destroy what the world considers important.

1 Corinthians 1: 19 - 28

When you use the wisdom of man in an attempt to understand the things of God, you will come up empty in your pursuit of the truth!  The wisdom of man does not apply to the ways of God.  You would be like a car mechanic going into the operating room attempting to do heart surgery.  Even the best mechanic in the world would fail miserably in the operating room!

Even so, the wisest man on earth will “fail miserably” if he tries to use his earthly wisdom to understand God!  

Be careful not to run after “earthly wisdom” in your pursuit of God!  And be prepared to discover that God uses what wise men think is “worthless, useless and nothing at all” to accomplish great things!

“Lord Jesus, give me Your wisdom instead of the wisdom of this world.  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”

Friday, June 16, 2017

No Other Way to be Happy in Jesus!

Shout praises to the LORD! Our God is kind, and it is right and good to sing praises to him.  The LORD rebuilds Jerusalem and brings the people of Israel back home again.  He renews our hopes and heals our bodies.  He decided how many stars there would be in the sky and gave each one a name.  Our LORD is great and powerful! He understands everything.  The LORD helps the poor, but he smears the wicked in the dirt.  Celebrate and sing! Play your harps for the LORD our God.  He fills the sky with clouds and sends rain to the earth, so that the hills will be green with grass.  He provides food for cattle and for the young ravens, when they cry out.  The LORD doesn't care about the strength of horses or powerful armies.  The LORD is pleased only with those who worship him and trust his love.

Psalm 147: 1 - 11

It is so very easy to judge the hearts of other people while ignoring the intent of your own heart!  I find myself pointing my finger at other people when I am guilty myself and want to divert attention from my own heart!  

I suppose, I am trying to make myself feel better by exposing the sin of others which I consider to be much worse than my own!  The Bible never says that I please Jesus by recognizing sin in other people.  It clearly says that I please the Lord by worshipping Him and trusting His love!  

There is an old hymn which perhaps says it best.  “There is no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to TRUST AND OBEY!”

When I do that instead of pointing at the sins of others I am pointing others to the One who died that their sins might be taken away!  

“Lord Jesus, keep my focus on You this day!  May my heart be too filled with Your love to criticize those who need to trust You as well.  Praise Your Holy Name forever.  Amen.”