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Friday, August 31, 2012

Speaking

We have all heard that we are to live out our faith so that others will see Christ in us. Some times we have to use words and say what we believe in order to get people to understand. 

Even Jesus had to do it at the tomb of his friend in John 11:41-42 41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.” 

 Continue to live a life of grace. Look at 2 Timothy 1:9 He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time,

Be wise today and always - be ready to speak when God prompts you. 

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Church

The local church is the hope of the world. - Bill Hybels

Hebrews 10:19-25 says,
19 Brothers and sisters, because of the blood of Jesus we can now confidently go into the holy place. 20 Jesus has opened a new and living way for us to go through the curtain. (The curtain is his own body.) 21 We have a superior priest in charge of God’s house. 22 We have been sprinkled with his blood to free us from a guilty conscience, and our bodies have been washed with clean water. So we must continue to come to him with a sincere heart and strong faith. 23 We must continue to hold firmly to our declaration of faith. The one who made the promise is faithful. 24 We must also consider how to encourage each other to show love and to do good things. 25 We should not stop gathering together with other believers, as some of you are doing. Instead, we must continue to encourage each other even more as we see the day of the Lord coming. (GW)

Only 20% of Americans make it to church on Sunday mornings. I believe Hybels has it right.We, believers in Christ, must be his hands and feet to the world.May we not be ashamed of the Gospel of be afraid to be the church God wants us to be. Amen?

September 16, 2012 is National back to Church Sunday. See you in church! 

Be wise today and always - go to church.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Give Thanks

We must fix our eyes on our unchanging Christ  

Read Psalm 136:1-4 out loud and respond with His love endures forever!

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods.
His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.
to him who alone does great wonders,
His love endures forever.

How do these verses (and the others) apply to your life?

What other things in your life do you need to give thanks for, and say His love endures forever? Why not do it throughout the day?

Be wise today and always - God's love endures forever!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Look

Look to Christ through His Word in Malachi

Read Malachi 3:11-18 and then break it down as follows:
 
The Test vv. 11-12  
11 I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe, ” says the Lord Almighty. 12 “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty. 

- open up heaven itself  
- pour out blessings
- defend you against enemies
- protect your possessions
- experience what it's like to be a country of grace

God said to test Him and see if He is still in charge. Are we promised these things today?

Lives Not Serving Him vv.13-15
13 “You have spoken arrogantly against me,” says the Lord. “Yet you ask, ‘What have we said against you?’ 14 “You have said, ‘It is futile to serve God. What do we gain by carrying out his requirements and going about like mourners before the Lord Almighty? 15 But now we call the arrogant blessed. Certainly evildoers prosper, and even when they put God to the test, they get away with it.’”

-   speak hard, rude words (curse) to God  
- live for self
- break all the rules
-  push God to the limit

How can we “be the church” to people like these?

When we feel that it is not fair that wicked people prosper, what do we need to remind ourselves?

 Lives that honor God vv. 16-18
16 Then those who feared the Lord talked with each other, and the Lord listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the Lord and honored his name.17 “On the day when I act,” says the Lord Almighty, “they will be my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as a father has compassion and spares his son who serves him. 18 And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not. 
 
- fear God with reverence obedience
- honor God's name
- do the right thing 
- serve God

What are some things that can help us to live a life honoring to God?

Be wise today and always - fix your eyes on an unchanging Christ


Monday, August 27, 2012

Look to Christ


Look to Christ through His Word in Malachi

Read Malachi 3:6-11 and then break it down as follows:

The Problem vv.6-7
“I the Lord do not change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. Ever since the time of your ancestors you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord Almighty. “But you ask, ‘How are we to return?’

-  ignoring God’s commands
- not focusing on His purposes
-  needing to return to God
  
Do we see these same problems today? 
How do unsaved people deal with problems?

 The Solution,vv. 8-11
“Will a mere mortal rob God? Yet you rob me.“But you ask, ‘How are we robbing you?’
“In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse —your whole nation—because you are robbing me. 10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. 11 I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe, ” says the Lord Almighty.

- Begin by being honest
- Stop robbing God
- Give the church your tithe

How can we apply God’s solution to our lives today?

Be wise today and always - do it God's way.



Sunday, August 26, 2012

Who Is In Charge?


Malachi 3:6 says "For I am the Lord, and I do not change."

How does this make you feel?

How does this knowledge effect your life?


We must have a passionate and clear vision of what God has called us to do.

"Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder things of the past. Behold, I will do something new."  Isaiah 43:18-19

 How do you apply this verse to your life?

Today you stand on the edge of a new change, a new challenge, and a new commitment. The only way to proceed is trust, obey, and know the Word of God.

Are you willing?

Be wise today and always - put God in charge of all your life.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Generations


There is a beautiful passage found in Psalm 71:14-18 that tells us how we should live our lives, and share what God has done.

As for me, I will always have hope;
    I will praise you more and more.
15 My mouth will tell of your righteous deeds,
    of your saving acts all day long—
    though I know not how to relate them all.
16 I will come and proclaim your mighty acts, Sovereign Lord;

    I will proclaim your righteous deeds, yours alone.
17 Since my youth, God, you have taught me,
    and to this day I declare your marvelous deeds.

Look what is said in the next verse about sharing with younger generations.

18 Even when I am old and gray,
    do not forsake me, my God,
till I declare your power to the next generation,
    your mighty acts to all who are to come.

Those of us that are over 45 should take special note of this verse. We feel sometimes as we get older that we’ve done our share, or we’re ready to “sit and soak”. This is not Scriptural! Craig Groeschel says, If you are not dead – then you are not done!

The conversation goes both ways, and we both have things to teach each other. Amen?

Be wise today and always – tell of what the Lord has done.

Friday, August 24, 2012

More Summit


Here are some more “golden nugget” statements for presenters at this year’s Leadership Summit.

The path to Big is to think small.

You must delegate authority in order to create leaders.

In organizations - preserve the core and stimulate the outer layers.

Communication and alignment are necessary to lead and serve together.

My favorite of the whole conference has to be: If you’re not dead then you’re not done!

James 1:5-6 tells us, If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.

Be wise today and always – seek wisdom.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Summit


I am still marveling over all the wisdom that was shared at this year’s Global Leadership Summit. Here are some of catch phrases that stimulated my thinking.

Move ahead purposely – don’t just respond to life.

With freedom comes responsibility.

Consistency counts!

Manage the good times in a way that you can cope when the bad times come.

Think about these statements and see how they might apply to your life. Proverbs 4:7 says, Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.

Be wise today and always – get wisdom.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Seed Planting


Do you ever think what the story of the Sower of Seeds in Luke 8 means to the church?

While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”

Jesus tells us that it is what happens when we share the Gospel.

The seed is the word of God. 12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. 14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.

It has a Seed Rejection ration of 75%! I heard recently that to improve on a 25% success rate that we must plant more seeds! We should plant more seeds but according to Jesus our conversions will remain at the same percentage. My thought is, Why not try to be more strategic in our seed planting?

Strategic seed planting would involve working the soil in advance. In other words:
1.     Engage in conversation about your faith.
2.     Pray, pray, pray for who and when we are to share the Gospel with.
3.     Live out your faith for all to see.
4.     Know the Word of God and share it accurately and truthfully.
5.     Be sensitive to what someone is telling you. They might not be saying no, but have question.
6.     Continue to be involved in the lives of new believers.
7.     Be ready always to share the Good News of Jesus.

Be wise today and always – plant the seeds of the Gospel in good soil.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Consequences



People especially those who call themselves Christians should take seriously God's warning in Hebrews.

23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.26 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. 28 Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 How much more severely do you think someone deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified them, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” 31 It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Hebrews 10:23-31 (NIV)

Be wise today and always - stop sinning and obey the Word.

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Church


The church needs to know where we’re going and where we’re trying to take them, or they will have a hard time making the journey.

That’s what God tells us:
Proverbs 29:18 (KJV) “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”
Proverbs 29:18 (NIV) Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint.”

A clear vision communicates three things:
1. Why we’re here: our purpose. A clear purpose provides direction. To GATHER as God's people. To GROW in faith, love and service And to GO into the world as disciples.

2. Where we’re going: a picture of the future. A clear picture provides motivation. We need to Be the Church! In the local church, the Community, and with other churches.

3. What guides us along the way: what we Value.  
Values protect and provide guardrails. Jesus Christ is the only way to God. God's Word is the truth and authority on every subject. The Holy Spirit gives us power and guidance. Prayer keeps us in constant communication with God to know His plan for our lives.

Without clear vision, we’ll never end up where we want to be, much less where we need to be; and neither will anyone else! 

Be wise today and always - Be the church!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

God's Way

Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord?
    Who may stand in his holy place?   
The one who has clean hands and a pure heart,
    who does not trust in an idol
    or swear by a false god.
They will receive blessing from the Lord
    and vindication from God their Savior.
Such is the generation of those who seek him,
    who seek you
r face, God of Jacob.
Psalm 24:3-6 

We can do all the wordly "right things", but without God they are useless. To come before and be used by God we have to be clean vessels - be holy.  There is only one way to be holy - Jesus Christ. Allow Him to forgive, cleanse, and guide you.

Be wise today and always - do it God's way.



Changes

Today I spoke on letting God be in charge of your life. 

There are two things that I know for sure.
1. God is in charge of all things.
2. God never changes.

He expects us to change from focusing on self and doing it our way to focusing on Christ and doing it His way. It seems that we who have accepted the truth that "Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life" and it is only through Him that we find God sometimes forget who's in charge. What do we see when we look in the mirror? Are you a follower of Christ or of the world? It's not hard to figure out and if you are not sure ask your friends - they know.

God wants to use you. Have you made yourself available?

But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. - 1 Corinthian 1:27

Be wise today and always put Christ first in all you do.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Strength


We all get tired and weak at times. Turn to the Bible and be strong!

He is the God who girds me with strength and prepares my ways. (Psalm 18:33)

God is our strength and protection, an ever-present help in affliction. (Psalm 46:2)

He alone is my rock and salvation; with him as my stronghold, I shall not be overcome. (Psalm 62:3)

The Lord is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. (Psalm 118:14)

Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. (1 Corinthians 16:13)

I can do all things in him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)

Be wise today and always – call on the Lord for your strength.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Encouragement


Everyone needs encouragement. Look what the Bible has to say:

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. -
Deuteronomy 31:6

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. –
Matthew 11:28-30

Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. -
Philippians 3:13-14

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. –
Philippians 4:6

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. –
Galatians 6:9

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. -
1 Peter 1:3

Be wise today and always – be encouraged by God’s Word.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Get Busy

Direction and purpose can be found throughout the Bible. Consider what Hebrews 10:23-25 says,
23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching
These verses speak volumes in to a believers life. 
1. Hold on to your hope in Christ.
2. Jesus is faithful to His promises.
3. Help other believers to live a life full of God's love and obedience.
4. Do not stop being the church! Fellowship and coming together is essential.
5. Encourage each other when you are together.
6. Jesus is coming back soon!
Be wise today and always - live out the Word of God everyday.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Clean Hands

To honor and serve God we must be in a right relationship with Him. We must be cleansed of our sins, and have Jesus' heart and mind. The psalmist speaks of this in Psalm 24:4 when he answers the question, Who can come before God?

 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol, or swear by what is false.

This deals with our known or public sins. It also reminds us that God knows our hearts and minds, those secret sins as well. 

Confess your sins - Jesus will forgive and cleanse you. It's a promise!

Be wise today and always - be clean and useful for the kingdom and yourself.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Needed Hands


Two More Ways God Wants Us to Use Our Hands

Our Hands need to be Up
This shows a changed life, and our relationship with God is the most important thing in our lives.

Our Hands need to be Open
This shows choosing to do things God’s way, and not our way.
It allows the Lord to give and take as we give up control.

How to be His Hands
Study but depend on His wisdom.
Be prepared but pray for His power.
Be willing to go but follow His directions.
Live a good life but call on Christ for forgiveness.

Be wise today and always – rely on God’s strength to be His hands.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Hands Theology


How does God wants us to be “Jesus to the world”?

Look at Isaiah 35:3-4 Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say to those with fearful hearts,” Be strong, do not fear; your God will come,  he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution he will come to save you.”

Praising the Lord might be more than when I put my hands up during a worship service.

Two Ways God Wants Us to Use Our Hands

Our Hands need to be Out
 This shows concern for others, and causes me to do something for someone else.

Our Hands need to be On
This shows caring for the least of these. It is God working through us as His hands and feet. If the redemptive work of Christ is to continue believers must get involved in other’s lives.

Be wise today and always – use your hands for God’s work.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

His Hands


There’s a song I like that the chorus goes:
In Your hands, for every storm there is a reason,
In Your hands, there is a time for every season,
Though my tears may fall, You hold me close,
 And love me through it all, In Your hands ……………..

It reminds me of Psalm 30:11-12; You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever.

Jesus promises us in John 10:29, My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.

God is truly good all the time. Amen?

Be wise today and always – God’s hand is the best place to be.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Praying the Word


I love this prayer by Paul found in Colossians chapter 1:3-14.


We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints— the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth. You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.
For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Pray this right now for yourself and for someone who God has laid on your heart.

Be wise today and always – pray the Word of God daily.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Children

 Jesus said, "Let the 
little children come to 
me, and do not hinder 
them, for the kingdom 
of heaven belongs to 
such as these." 
- Matthew 19:14



I love this photo taken in Haiti. It reminds me of the above verse when the disciples were trying to keep the kids away from Jesus.

 God gives us a mandate here in Matthew 19. We are to bring the children to Jesus! We can learn from them in areas of faith, obedience, and love. The next time you have the opportunity to work with the children in your church be the first to sign up. There is more to be gained than you can give.


Be wise today and always - be Jesus to the children in your life and church,

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Honor God


How can you best honor God?

You don’t have to become a missionary or minister to give a right answer. Honor God with your lives – dependable, loving, caring, doing our best, and sharing Jesus with the world around us. But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,1 Peter 3:15

Each one of us has been given “unique” eyes to see God’s grander view in a way that honors Him. We are blessed. May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. – Psalm 20:4

Be wise today and always - honor God with your daily life.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Life Verse


My life verse is 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24,
 Rejoice always,  pray continually,  give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt  but test them all; hold on to what is good,  reject every kind of evil. May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.

Is there a verse that guides your life and way of thinking?

God establishes a little section of His Word deep within you that becomes a spiritual foundation upon which to build your life. Keep your eyes and heart open for a Scripture that speaks to you in a personal way. When you come across verses that speak to you, write them down, memorize them, and hide them in your heart to meditate on their meaning for your life.

Be wise today and always - always have God's Word in you.

Monday, August 6, 2012

The Right Thing


A friend of mine recently said to me, If God is in it then you will win it! The problem is that many times we wonder what is God’s will. It says in Romans 12:2; Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

It is so important to God that we do things His way that He’s given us His Word for guidance.
Colossians 3:23
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” (NIV)

Ecclesiastes 9:10
Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the grave, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.” (NIV)

Luke 6:45
A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth that which is evil: for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” ~KJV


When in life you don’t know what to do – do the next right thing.

Be wise today and always – do it God’s way.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Yes Lord


Proper response to when God calls your name -  "Here I am,"
This was Isaiah response, and should be ours even when we don’t understand.

In Genesis 22 this was Abraham’s answer, even though God was asking him to sacrifice his son Isaac, who was obedient to his father, and didn’t ask any questions.

He went on the journey with his Father on short notice. - He didn’t ask any questions.

They stopped to cut wood. - He didn’t ask any questions

On the third day of the trip Abraham saw the place in the distance and they stopped. - He didn’t ask any questions

Abraham told his servants to wait while they worshiped. - He didn’t ask any questions

He had wood loaded on his back and his Dad is carrying fire and a knife. - He didn’t ask any questions

Finally as they made their way up the mountain Isaac asks his Father,
       The fire and wood are here," Isaac said, "but where is the lamb for the burnt offering? - Abraham’s response, God Himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.
 When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. But the angel of the LORD called out to him from heaven, "Abraham! Abraham!"

And another sacrifice was provided.

Maybe we should let God provide the answers, and may we be more obedient.   

Be wise today and always – Here I am Lord send me!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Leadership

I am really excited that the Global Leadership Summit is just a few days away. I love learning from great leaders. Here are some of my favorite quotes on the subject:

Leadership is influence.
Everything rises and falls with leadership.
If you try to lead and no one follows then you're just taking a walk.
Everyone is a leader.
The first person you lead is yourself.
Lead where you are.
Wise leaders take wise risks.
No one leads alone.
To be a good leader you must be a good follower.

Why not pick one of these quotes and think about how you can apply it to your life.

Be wise today and always - good leaders look to God for direction.
 

Chicken


There has been a whole lot of talk lately that includes the words: free speech, haters, sin, tolerance, and boycotts. I’ve listen to both sides, and it’s pretty clear that no one is really listening to the other, and there is a lot of bad information out there. So, in times like these, believers in Christ are told to turn to the only source of total truth, the Word of God. At my church we proclaim its truth and power every week. Maybe we should do it every day. Let’s try it now!

Hold your Bibles high believers – shake it in the devil’s nose and proclaim that:

This is the Word of God and it is truth,
It contains all I need to live for and learn of God.
I am not ashamed of the Gospel and I will apply it to my life!

Be wise today and always – live by the Word not the world.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Reaching Out


We need to be more proactive like Jesus. If I am drowning or lost, will you save me? Of course you would. We need to have that same since of urgency when it comes to evangelism.

Statistically Christians are losing – there are less Christians than just three years ago.The world around us is changing at a breakneck speed. The church needs to work smarter and harder to reach the lost. Don’t be stuck in tradition. Live for today - it's time for God’s church to step up!  

Remember the teaching from Luke 1:11-13

11 While they were listening to this, he went on to tell them a parable, because he was near Jerusalem and the people thought that the kingdom of God was going to appear at once. 12 He said: “A man of noble birth went to a distant country to have himself appointed king and then to return. 13 So he called ten of his servants and gave them ten mina ‘Put this money to work,’ he said, ‘until I come back.’…
 
Be wise today and always – use what God has given you and get to work.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

People Are Funny


People Are funny but Jesus loves us anyway
Luke 19:1-10:  1 Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. 2 A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. 3 He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.  5 When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” 6 So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.  7 All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”  8 But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”  9 Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
They all murmured or muttered about Zacchaeus. That’s what we do when we don’t or agree or understand something.

We don’t have to mutter. Jesus teaches us three things through this story.

1. God is a seeking God. Why do we expect people come to us?

2 God calls us by name. People want to be heard and recognized. Image is not everything – relationship is what people desire.

3. Jesus identifies with us, wants to spend time with us, even though He knows all about us! Do we know our community, and are we glad when they come? Do we seek opportunities to engage with them?

Be wise today and always – be active in sharing the Gospel.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Bring a Friend


Do you remember the story of healing found in Mark 2:1­12, A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. They gathered in such large numbers that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, “Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, “Why are you thinking these things? Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? 10 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the man, 11 “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 12 He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”

Have you ever tried to bring a friend to Jesus?

Despite what it may cost, Jesus came to save sinners, and we have a great responsibility to guide them to Him.

Don't we all have friends who need the forgiveness of Jesus?  Are we urgent about it?

There was two healings that took place in this passage; 1. The man was healed from being paralyzed. 2. The man’s sins were forgiven (eternal healing).

Are we afraid of how others will react, or perhaps of how Jesus will react to our efforts?

What sacrifices will you make to bring others to Jesus?

Be wise today and always - bring your friends to Jesus.