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“The stuck-up fall flat on their faces, but down-to-earth people stand firm.” ~~King Solomon

Ah, now there we go. Down to earth people. We all seem to admire them. But is that said of me? Am I down to earth?

May it be so.

“The stuck-up fall flat on their faces, but down-to-earth people stand firm.” ~~King Solomon (Proverbs 11:2 The Message)

Will I judge you or ….

We have a choice. We live in a culture where we are all critics. It is an easy trap to fall into to judge people. We don’t like to use the word “judge” but that is what it is all about. Jesus is clear that we shouldn’t live that way.

The choice to make is love. We must love and not judge.

“If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”~~ Mother Teresa

“You’re more than happy when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom.” ~~Jesus

Jesus knows that following Him may not be a “bed of roses”. He tells us about it in advance. We may get persecuted. We may even be martyred. It happens every day. Will you “sign up” to follow Jesus if you know that tomorrow someone may kill you for believing Him?

Of course, living in America makes if feel like this isn’t an issue; that it can’t happen to us. Because of that we are lulled into thinking it doesn’t happen to anyone any longer.

Now here is the rub. Jesus also knows the benefit of being persecuted. Persecution drives (the deeply committed) deeper into His Father’s world.

“You’re blessed (more than happy) when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom.” ~~Jesus (Matthew 5:10 The Message)

The smoke screen of a know-it-all

I really enjoy my “news reader” on the internet. I keep up with 100′s of stuff (feeds) a day. I am on Facebook, Twitter, Yammer, LinkedIn, email, etc. I am hyper-connected. Others follow the news on TV or radio all the time. We all have our versions of how we keep up. We can be up to date in real time. “Breaking news”!! We can know so much. If we think that makes us wise, we are in for a rude awakening. Such thinking is actually foolish. God’s ways are different.

How much time do we spend connected to Him and what He is thinking? Really, compared to our connections to this world, how much time do we spend connected to His world?

Don’t fool yourself. Don’t think that you can be wise merely by being up-to-date with the times. Be God’s fool—that’s the path to true wisdom. What the world calls smart, God calls stupid. It’s written in Scripture, He exposes the chicanery of the chic.  The Master sees through the smoke screens of the know-it-alls. 1 Corinthians 3:18-20

May I connect with God and know what He is thinking.

Not caring …

June 8, 2013 1 comment

It is easier to deal with someone who clearly hates you than someone who just doesn’t care. We have an enemy who hates us and yet we go through most days ignoring that. We have a Father who loves like there is no tomorrow. Humans seem to have the unique capacity for apathy.

May I love like my Father.

“The opposite of love is not hate, its indifference.” ~~C.S. Lewis

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What must we do?

It is a fairly reasonable question. We come to Jesus. From our religious culture and upbringing we ask “What must we do?”

We have been told our whole life, go to church, pray, fast, be religious. The focus is on doing. It is more than just a religious culture. It is the way of life in America. So, what does God require? Good question.

Jesus wants us to work at believing in Him. It is all about the relationship with him and not what we do. We must believe. That leads to His new plan. His mission will fill us when we know He cares for us.

Then they asked him, ‘What must we do to do the works God
requires?’ 
Jesus answered, ‘The work of God is this: to believe in the
one he has sent.’
(John 6:26-29 NIV)
 
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“God hates cheating in the marketplace; he loves it when business is aboveboard.” ~~King Solomon

June 6, 2013 1 comment

When it comes to business, we need to always be aboveboard and true to our word. We should always see our approach as one that Jesus would love and be proud of. I remember that one day Jesus chased the business people out of the temple (church) because of their dishonest approach.

May all I do in my business approach be aboveboard.

God hates cheating in the marketplace; he loves it when business is aboveboard.” ~~King Solomon (Proverbs 11:1)

How much is it worth to me?

June 5, 2013 1 comment

Am I ecstatic about what I have found in God’s new plan? Am I prepared / willing to sell everything I own to follow Jesus? What is so precious in my life that I won’t give it up for Jesus? Questions that Jesus asks that demand an answer.

A small thing to note in this story that Jesus tells us. The man who found the treasure was a trespasser. He didn’t belong there but he used the knowledge he had to get the property. Even though a trespasser, he became the owner. Why? He knew something the owner didn’t. The owner didn’t know what his property was worth. The trespasser did.

God’s world is a treasure. I will give up everything for it.

“God’s kingdom is like a treasure hidden in a field for years and then accidentally found by a trespasser. The finder is ecstatic—what a find!—and proceeds to sell everything he owns to raise money and buy that field.” ~~Jesus (Matthew 13:44)

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Do whatever Jesus tells you

This is pretty good advise. It came from a woman who knew Jesus very well. His mother knew who he was and what He could do. And so it was pretty simple. “Do whatever he tells you.”

Now the “whatever” wasn’t going to make any sense to them. They needed wine. He told them to put water into some jars. But, she advised them to do whatever He asked. And so, the rest of the story is pretty simple as well. They did!!

May I do whatever He tells me.

His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so, John 2:5-8 TNIV

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“Let’s go to the rest of the villages so I can proclaim the good news there also. This is why I’ve come.” ~~Jesus

Jesus knows why He is here. He is on a mission. He has good news to tell everyone. He is urgent about His focus. Knowing the “why” is huge. God gives us that confidence. We know “why”.

Jesus wants us to be the same way. He wants us to get moving. No need to linger.

“Let’s go to the rest of the villages so I can proclaim the good news there also. This is why I’ve come.” ~~Jesus (Mark 1:38-39 The Message)

Do I have a heart after God?

Clearly God wants us to be people after his own heart. I read it time and time again. And so I am thinking about this a lot. What does it mean to have a heart that is far (Matthew 15:8) from God? How can I fully commit my heart to our Father?

I am thinking that it has a lot to do with my emotional engagement with God. No matter what, is my innermost desire to please Him, to love Him, to do what He wants? Do I have a passion for Him that won’t stop or go away?

Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. (Deut. 6:5)

Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart. (1 Sam. 16:7)

Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Luke 12:34)

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. (Prov. 3:5)

Your word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against You. (Ps. 119:11 NASB)

These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. (Matt 15:8)

For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. (2 Chron. 16:9)

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“When you’re kind to others, you help yourself; when you’re cruel to others, you hurt yourself.” ~~King Solomon

Who do we think we are hurting? Cruelty is intended to hurt someone else. It actually backfires and hurts us. The reverse is also very true. Being kind to others helps me build the right God-like values in my life.

Jesus knew this. Solomon knew this. Kindness is the cornerstone of a loving life.

“When you’re kind to others, you help yourself; when you’re cruel to others, you hurt yourself.” ~~King Solomon (Proverbs 11:17)

“It’s urgent that you get this right.” ~~Jesus

May 31, 2013 1 comment

Jesus expects us to have a sense of urgency. His passion for doing God’s will right now is overwhelming. He knows what God’s “mission for this moment” is.

He demands that we follow God’s new plan. It is an urgency to do the right thing now which is God’s thing.

But it is not do just anything. God has something in mind. He will reveal it to us. Our job is to do it and not ignore it.

“It’s urgent that you get this right.” ~~Jesus  (John 5:25-27 The Message)

A lot of small things

May 30, 2013 1 comment

We are called to love by our Master Jesus. That is an every moment kind of calling. It is a lot of little things. Of course, in God’s world, that adds up to a lot.

In this life we cannot always do great things. But we can do small things with great love. -Mother Teresa

A clean slate

May 29, 2013 1 comment

We have ministers that are very faithful. Everyday they do their thing. Same message; same station. If you do something you will be “saved”. Same message, year in, year out. But that same old plan never makes a dent in the problem of missing the mark with God. But Jesus had a new plan in mind. With one act, we never would have to “do” anything again.

And so, one act and it was over. He then went back and sat down next to God just waiting for us to “get it”. He is just waiting for His and our enemy to cave in. He has done everything for us. I don’t need “to do” anything other than believe and love. I can take part in being complete in Him with nothing else to do. The Holy Spirit confirms that there is a new plan in effect. And it is not one put on paper and notarized. The Spirit is writing it on my heart. It is there on the lining to my emotional core.

The slate is clean. I don’t need “to do” anything to take part in the new plan. I just continue to believe, change my mind about God’s purpose in my life and don’t throw it all away. It is mine forever in Him!!

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The worst is never the worst

Our heavenly Father loves me. He is love and love is patient. He isn’t frustrated with me. He won’t let go. He is going to see me through. So knowing this, I can wait for hope to appear. It will. He loves me.

He cares and doesn’t put any roadblocks in my way. He isn’t involved with making my life hard. I just need to wait on Him. I shouldn’t run away but I should face reality with Him. Nothing is too hard for Him. He makes the Lion and the Lamb to lie down together. How good is that? He has stockpiles of love. No end to His love.

When life is heavy and hard to take, go off by yourself. Enter the silence. Bow in prayer. Don’t ask questions: Wait for hope to appear. Don’t run from trouble. Take it full-face. The “worst” is never the worst.

Why? Because the Master won’t ever walk out and fail to return. If he works severely, he also works tenderly. His stockpiles of loyal love are immense. He takes no pleasure in making life hard, in throwing roadblocks in the way.
Lamentations 3

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Do we trust God as much as He trusts us?

You know you feel this way some days. But, God does trust us. Think about it. Everything that is happening in our life is for our good.

Do we trust Him as much as He trusts us?

“I know God will not give me anything I can’t handle. I just wish that He didn’t trust me so much.” ~~Mother Teresa

“A thick bankroll is no help when life falls apart, but a principled life can stand up to the worst..” ~~King Solomon

We think that money will save us. If we get in a tight spot, we know we can whip out our credit cards. God was willing to  give King Solomon anything he wanted. He asked for wisdom.

Despite his wealth as King, he knew that money isn’t the answer. God is the answer. He will see us through when everything falls apart. It is interesting that on our money it says “In God we trust”. Amen.

“A thick bankroll is no help when life falls apart, but a principled life can stand up to the worst..” ~~King Solomon (Proverbs 11:4)

“When you enter a home, greet the family, ‘Peace.’” ~~Jesus

May 25, 2013 1 comment

When Jesus sent the 72 on a mission he was very direct in how they should act. One item was when they went into a home to great the family in peace.

Jesus brings us peace. He wants us to extend it to those we come in contact with, even strangers. Our mission, from Him, is to bring peace to all we meet.

“When you enter a home, greet the family, ‘Peace.’” ~~Jesus (Luke 10:5-6 The Message)

Who is the ultimate pioneer?

May 24, 2013 1 comment

God got everything started. Everything came from Him. His word made it all happen. He is also the one who keeps everything going. Without Him it all come to a standstill. So, He starts it all and keeps it all moving.

His son Jesus came as a pioneer. He led the way through His suffering on to the glory He experienced it first. God started it all. God keeps it moving and now His new agreement with us is to complete it all as well. Jesus leads us as the new pioneer of supernatural courage and faith.

God is the one who saves us from the endless cycle of missing God’s goal for our life and those of us who are saved have an origin that we share in common. It is all about Jesus. And Jesus doesn’t hesitate to treat us all as family and friends. We are all together with the one starts, keeps things going and is now completing His good work. How amazing it is. How stunning He is.

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Where does joy come from?

We want joy in our life. We want peace.

Do we long for God? Does our heart yearn to know what God wants us to do today?

Then we will know joy and peace.

“God can not give us joy and peace apart from Himself cause there is no such thing.” -C.S. Lewis

“You can be glad when people put you down for me. All heaven applauds.” ~~Jesus

Jesus knows that if we are radically committed to Him, we are going to get in trouble. We will get put down, people will lie about us, we may get kicked out of places or we may even get killed. We should count the cost of following Jesus. Yes, there is a cost but Jesus is also clear on the benefit.

We will be pleasing Him.  Everyone in Heaven will cheer and we will be in good company!! What is better than know we have pleased Jesus?

“You can be glad when people put you down for me—give a cheer, even!—for though they don’t like what you are doing, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company.” ~~Jesus (Matthew 5:11-12 The Message)

How can you do anything other than obey?

God doesn’t make us do anything. It is all voluntary. It is our choice.

Have you seen Him? How can you do anything other than obey?

“Jesus never insists on obedience, but when we truly see Him we will instantly obey Him.” ~~ Oswald Chambers

It is all about relationships

It is all about relationships. Our relationship with God. Our relationship with all those we know or even don’t know but come in contact because God has something in mind. Am I willing to humble myself? Can I give everything I have for what God wants me do in love of others? I can with His gift of Power of the Holy Spirit. That is His promise. That is the benefit of His new agreement based on love.

And in relationships, we should have the same attitude of mind that Jesus had. He lived in the moment. He did what He saw His Father doing. He came to serve, to love, to give, to do the “tough” things. He was obedient. He didn’t dodge what His Father sent Him here to do. He gave Himself to it.

In your relationships with one another, have the same attitude of mind the Messiah Jesus had: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a human being, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death–even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, Philippians 2:5-10 TNIV

Beer for my horses

May 19, 2013 2 comments

There is a celebration going on. The forces of evil have been defeated. Justice has been served. Yea God!!

We’ll all raise up our glasses against evil forces Singing “Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses.” Whoo hoo!! God is God, good and great. Let the celebration begin.

This is a great song by Toby Keith.

Well a man, come on
Six o’clock news
Says somebody been shot
Somebody’s been abused
Somebody blew up a building
Somebody stole their car
Somebody got away
Somebody didn’t get too far, yeah
They didn’t get too far
Grandpappy told my pappy
Back in my day, son
A man had to answer
For the wicked thing he done
Take all the rope in Texas
Find a tall oak tree
Round up all of them bad boys
And hang ‘em high in the street
For all the people to see
And justice is the one thing
You should always find
You gotta saddle up your boys
You gotta draw a hard line
When the gun smoke settles
We’ll sing a victory tune
And we’ll all meet back
At the local saloon
We’ll raises up our glasses
Against evil forces
Singing, “Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses!”

We got too many gangsters
Doing dirty deeds
Too much corruption
And crime in the streets
It’s time the long arm of the law
Put a few more in the ground
Send them all to their Maker
And he’ll set them on down
You can bet, He’ll set ‘em down
Cause justice is the one thing
You should always find
You gotta saddle up your boys
You gotta draw a hard line
When the gunsmoke settles
We’ll sing a victory tune
And we’ll all meet back
At the local saloon
And we’ll raise up our glasses
Against evil forces
Singing, “Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses!”

Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses!
You know justice is the one thing
You should always find
You gotta saddle up your boys
You gotta draw a hard line
When the gunsmoke settles
We’ll sing a victory tune
And we’ll all met back
At the local saloon
We’ll raise up our glasses
Against evil forces
Singing, “Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses!”
Singing ,”Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses!’

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What should I worry about as a parent?

May 18, 2013 2 comments

As parents, we worry about all kinds of things. We fret. We get angry.

Here is something to think (worry … ) about. Our children are watching us. The examples we set or don’t tell the story.

May our children see loving parents, grounded in God.

“Don’t worry that your children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.” ~Robert Fulghum

Will I choose God?

We get to choose who we will serve. If it isn’t the living God, we get what we want. God doesn’t make us worship him. He wants our love and adoration freely. It has been that way from the beginning. It still is today.

So today we get to choose.

May I choose wisely.

“So God said, in effect, “If that’s what you want, that’s what you get.” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 1:24 The Message)

“You’ve been given insight into God’s kingdom—you know how it works.” ~~Jesus

May 15, 2013 2 comments

God has a kingdom where he rules. It doesn’t work like any government we know in this world. He is in complete control. He is the eternal King. He is light. He is love.

He cares about us so much that He has given us insight into how His government works. Our mission is to bring to bring to earth His kingdom.

May I have insight into how God’s kingdom works.

“You’ve been given insight into God’s kingdom—you know how it works.” ~~Jesus (Luke 8:10)

Do I believe Jesus could come back today?

May 14, 2013 3 comments

Paul lived as if Jesus could show up any minute. He believed it in his core. His passion, every minute, was about Jesus.

Paul challenges us to live the same way. Do we believe Jesus could show up any minute now? Will it make a difference in what we do today?

May I have the passion for my Jesus that I live like today is the day He will physically come back to reign on earth.

“He could show up any minute!” ~~Apostle Paul (Philippians 4:5 The Message)

Do I live like Jesus?

The Apostle John is consumed with the purity of Jesus life. It came down to one thing in John’s mind. It is all about love. Jesus is all about love. That is the essence of the commandments. That is how Jesus lived.

May I live like Jesus. May I mature my love.

“Anyone who claims to be intimate with God ought to live the same kind of life Jesus lived.” ~~Apostle John  (1 John 2:6 The Message)

“The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant.” ~~Jesus

May 12, 2013 3 comments

Jesus challenges us to change our minds about how to pray. We are steeped in the religious way to do it. That is not the God way.

Here’s what He wants you to do:

  • Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God.
  • Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage.
  • The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.

May I accept the Jesus prayer challenge.

“The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant.” ~~Jesus (Matthew 6 The Message) 

Do I have a passion for God’s wisdom?

How do we get wisdom? From the world? From reading books? By watching TED?

Wisdom comes from God and it is up to us to let Him train us. He is in a good mood and wants to help us. If we passionately seek what it is He wants in any given situation, He will guide us.

May we have a passion for His wisdom.

“Be blessed, God; train me in your ways of wise living.” ~~King David (Psalm 119:12 The Message) 

“What you’re called does not matter and where you go to worship does not matter.” ~~Jesus

May 10, 2013 1 comment

It is not about what religious group you are born into. It doesn’t matter what church you go to.

Jesus is challenging us. He is clear.

It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God..Our worship must engage our spirit in the pursuit of truth.That’s the kind of people that Jesus is out looking for. Those who are simply and honestly themselves before God in their worship.
Jesus challenges us to know that God is sheer being itself—Spirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration. It is not what religious group you were born into. It is not what church you go to.
“But the time is coming—it has, in fact, come—when what you’re called will not matter and where you go to worship will not matter.” ~~Jesus (John 4:23 The Message)

What does God have in mind for us?

God is getting us into the shape for the goal He has for us. We need to desire reaching that goal like nothing else. We need the discipline to stay the course. We know He has a goal for us. We know it is a grand and glorious plan.

That goal is simple but not easy.

May I be ready.

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What kind of insight to we have?

We have God’s wisdom in our life. The amazing Spirit of God leads us. That is amazing. While we don’t always understand everything, we have a leg up on gaining insight into how God works than the average Joe.

It is interesting that the world we live in doesn’t see this.

“But you’ve seen and heard God’s wisdom because God, by his Spirit, has brought it all out into the open before you.” ~~ Apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 2:9 The Message)

“Blessings accrue on a good and honest life, but the mouth of the wicked is a dark cave of abuse.” ~~King Solomon

It seems conventional wisdom is that there is no reward for a good and honest life.  There is the eternal question of why bad things happen to good people.

I think this is a matter of the heart. Jesus challenges us to see life as a matter of what is in our heart and not the physical world. Jesus says we will be blessed when we mourn. The cause of the mourning is not seen as a good thing. It is about getting our heart right. Blessings flow from that.

“Blessings accrue on a good and honest life, but the mouth of the wicked is a dark cave of abuse.” ~~King Solomon (Proverbs 10:6)

What is worth reporting on?

What is worth reporting on, in Paul’s opinion? It is all about the love we show to others. That is it. There is nothing else.

It isn’t the new church building. It is not how moving the Worship Team sang the new song. It isn’t new car we just bought.

There are only two ways to get God’s attention. Love Him and love everyone we know and meet. That is how our faith in Jesus is demonstrated.

“We keep getting reports on your steady faith in the Messiah Jesus, and the love you continuously extend to all Christians.” ~Apostle Paul (Colossians 1:4 The Message)

“Does it make sense to send a devil to catch a devil, to use Satan to get rid of Satan?” ~~Jesus

It is hard to imaging this actually happened but then again sometimes we have a “fantasy image” of Jesus that is not anchored in reality. When religious people don’t understand what is happening, it is easy to blame things on evil. And so,the religion scholars from Jerusalem came down spreading rumors that Jesus was working black magic, using devil tricks to impress them with spiritual power.

Jesus doesn’t ignore it. Jesus confronted their slander. He still does that today. We must face who Jesus is and not slander Him. This is very important. Jesus demands it.

If someone is doing good, in the name of God, can that be the devil?

“Does it make sense to send a devil to catch a devil, to use Satan to get rid of Satan?” ~~Jesus (Mark 3 23 The Message)

What message am I embracing?

We don’t like to think about it but there are a number of messages delivered by men of God that aren’t good news. There are many that are at odds with the gift of grace that the Messiah Jesus has bestowed on us. It happens easily. It only shows our fickleness.

We need to know what the message of good news is. We need to stick with it. We must reject anything else. May we stand firm today.

“I can’t believe your fickleness—how easily you have turned traitor to him who called you by the grace of Christ by embracing a variant message!” ~~Apostle Paul (Galatians 1:6 The Message)

What is the signet that we have?

God has given us the Holy Spirit. That is a sign of His authority in our life. He has left us with power, His power. That is an amazing thing. What a great God we have.

And, that is not all. The Holy Spirit in our life is only the beginning. God has so many wonderful things in store for us. And we will receive them all. Not a one will be withheld from us. The Holy Spirit in our life is the sign of all the glory to come.

“This signet (the Holy Spirit) from God is the first installment on what’s coming, a reminder that we’ll get everything God has planned for us, a praising and glorious life.” ~Apostle Paul (Ephesians 1:14 The Message)

Am I being a miser? Am I stingy?

We have heard a lot. God is good and tells us His secrets. Are we keeping them to ourselves or giving them away? His generosity is well known. Are we sharing it?

The more of His goodness we give away the more we get. It just keeps coming back to us over and over again.

May we not shove the light under a bed. May we set it out so everyone can see.

No one lights a lamp and then covers it with a washtub or shoves it under the bed. No, you set it up on a lamp stand so those who enter the room can see their way. We’re not keeping secrets; we’re telling them. We’re not hiding things; we’re bringing everything out into the open. So be careful that you don’t become misers of what you hear. Generosity begets generosity. Stinginess impoverishes. Luke 8:16-18

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“What you’ll get is the Holy Spirit.” ~~Jesus

Jesus was about to ascend into heaven. The disciples were very concerned and wanted to know if Jesus was going to reign as King on earth. Jesus not so politely let them know that they didn’t get to know that timing. That was God’s business and not theirs.

But … and this is a big one, what they do get is the Holy Spirit. And that changed everything. For them and for us. All the power of God was about to be released on them and in them. God is in a great mood and He has given us the Holy Spirit. Not that is good news.

“What you’ll get is the Holy Spirit.” ~~Jesus (Acts 1:7 The Message)

What God wants

God wants things here to be like they are in heaven. Really. He is serious. That is what He has in mind for us.

May I tap into that power. Now.

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Have we taken the time to write?

Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians was very direct. He was concerned about what was hearing. Sometimes a clearly written message can be more effective than a visit. Plus, it can be reread many, many times when the spoken word cannot.

Are we concerned about something? Have we spent months writing a clear and compelling message? Even if it isn’t sent, do we care enough to get that clear?

“That was my reason for writing a letter instead of coming—so I wouldn’t have to spend a miserable time disappointing the very friends I had looked forward to cheering me up. ” ~~Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 2:3 The Message)

Summing up …

It helps to sum up and shut up. This says it all. We have a job. Let’s do it.

“Summing up: …be sympathetic …. bless—that’s your job, to bless. You’ll be a blessing and also get a blessing.” ~~Apostle Peter

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Does it make a difference to be religious?

It isn’t about who was raised in the church and has a religious background. Paul is clear on that. If the training leads to following our Master Jesus, the Messiah, that is great. It is not about the training. It is about doing what God wants. Every day!!

The mistake the religious make is to believe it is simply about showing up. It is not about going to church. It is about having a passion for Jesus and doing what He wants us to. It is about obedience. It is about having a heart for God. It is about living a free life basking in how good God is.

“So what difference does it make who’s religious and who isn’t, who has been trained in God’s ways and who hasn’t? As it turns out, it makes a lot of difference—but not the difference so many have assumed.!” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 3:1)

Smile even if you are hurting. Be happy even if you are unhappy. It’s called strength!

April 27, 2013 2 comments

Smile even if you are hurting. Be happy even if you are unhappy. It’s called strength!

Jesus didn’t call us to be Christians. He called us to be Disciples. He didn’t promise us a rose garden. He did guarantee that if we follow Him, we would have a joy no one can understand. Submission leads to happiness.

You can smile if you are hurting. You have Jesus, you have His strength and you can be happy in Him.

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I believe …

“I believe in Christianity as I believe in the sun: not only because I see it, but by it I see everything else” ~~C.S.Lewis

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Are we people of hope?

It wasn’t that long ago that by missing God’s goal for us, we weren’t living a very “smart” life. But God saved us from all of that. It was all His doing. He is God and in a very good mood.

It was not anything we could have figured out on our own. He gave us a very good bath. So we are all clean now by way of the Holy Spirit. He has been so generous to us. Through Jesus we are living a new life. What a gift to have our relationship restored with Him.

And there is more. We get to live this new life forever. No end to it at all. We are people of hope?

At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:3-7 TNIV

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What is your desire?

The Jews of Jesus day were practicing a very soul-killing spirituality, a lifeless religion of duty and obligation. Desire was out of the question. No wonder they feared Jesus. He came along and started appealing to desire.

To the weary, Jesus speaks of rest. To the lost, he speaks of finding your way. Again and again and again, Jesus takes people back to their desires. “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Matt. 7:7). These are outrageous words, provocative words. Ask, seek, knock—these words invite and arouse desire. What is it that you want? They fall on deaf ears if there is nothing you want, nothing you’re looking for, nothing you’re hungry enough to bang on a door over.

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