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Posts Tagged ‘Apostle Paul’

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

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)

Are you worshiping the wrong thing?

April 7, 2013 2 comments

We worship everything but God. And when you think about it, what sense does it make? How can you compare, for example, the creator of the universe with some cheap imitation?

We know, at our core, who to worship. The enemy seduces us into not paying attention and worshiping something else.

May I know who God is. May I worship Him and not some cheap imitation.

“They traded the glory of God who holds the whole world in his hands for cheap figurines you can buy at any roadside stand.” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 1:23The Message)

Can we really out imagine God?

We think we know it all. We are very confident about what the future holds for us. Can we really out imagine God?

No, we can’t out imagine the creator of the universe. We can’t out imagine the inventor of love. We can’t out imagine the author of faithfulness.

God loves us and we can’t imagine what He has in store for us. So let’s just fasten our seat belts and enjoy the ride.

“That’s why we have this Scripture text: No one’s ever seen or heard anything like this, Never so much as imagined anything quite like it— What God has arranged for those who love him.” ~~ Apostle Paul   (1 Corinthians 2:9 The Message)

The Message gets stronger in us

We are a people who understand the Message of Good News. That Message keeps get stronger and stronger in us. Nothing or no one can stop it. God will see His word be fulfilled. It happens through us.

May we allow the word of God to grow in us today. Just as He promised.

“The Message bears fruit and gets larger and stronger, just as it has in you.” ~Apostle Paul (Colossians 1:6 The Message)

Do you know the meaning of the words?

February 14, 2013 Leave a comment

We were in big trouble. We didn’t feel God’s love. We didn’t know how to love. We missed God’s goal for our life. Over and over again, minute by minute.

Jesus rescued us from all of that. Having never missed God’s goal, he became the sacrifice we needed. We now know love and can love. We are focused on God’s plan.

“We know the meaning of those words because Jesus Christ rescued us from this evil world we’re in by offering himself as a sacrifice for our sins.” ~~Apostle Paul (Galatians 1:4 The Message)  

What can I do?

November 5, 2012 Leave a comment

Some days it is hard to describe. And, if the Apostle Paul couldn’t do it some days, I guess it is OK if I can’t either.

But … I can be thankful. And so, I am!!!

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! 2 Corinthians 9:15

Do I have a swollen head?

October 21, 2012 Leave a comment

Love just does it’s job. That is normal in God’s way of doing things. Love doesn’t get all enamored with itself. God does His “love thing” day in and day out. He is love. He doesn’t make a big deal of it at all. That is just the way He rolls.

May just do what I know to do. May I just love. Day in and day out. There is no glory in that. There should be no “pats on the back”. That is my job.

Love doesn’t have a swelled head. ~~Apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 13)

Will I take the help?

October 17, 2012 1 comment

Am I letting it slip through my fingers? I have access to God. Jesus paved the way. Jesus understands our reality. He is completely in touch with my reality. He knows where I am with things and is ready to help me.

He experienced everything I am experiencing. He understands. He even managed to hit the goal that God had for Him.

So, will I take the help? Will I accept it? Will I walk right up to Him and get what He is ready to give to me?

Yes, I will.

Now that we know what we have—Jesus, this great High Priest with ready access to God—let’s not let it slip through our fingers. We don’t have a priest who is out of touch with our reality. He’s been through weakness and testing, experienced it all—all without missing God’s goal for His life. So let’s walk right up to him and get what he is so ready to give. Take the mercy, accept the help. ~~Apostle Paul (Hebrews 4:14-16)

Do I lust for money? A good word from the Apostle Paul

Worth watching this short video. Religion is not a way to make a fast buck. How much is enough?

The Lust for Money

2-5 These are the things I want you to teach and preach. If you have leaders there who teach otherwise, who refuse the solid words of our Master Jesus and this godly instruction, tag them for what they are: ignorant windbags who infect the air with germs of envy, controversy, bad-mouthing, suspicious rumors. Eventually there’s an epidemic of backstabbing, and truth is but a distant memory. They think religion is a way to make a fast buck.

6-8 A devout life does bring wealth, but it’s the rich simplicity of being yourself before God. Since we entered the world penniless and will leave it penniless, if we have bread on the table and shoes on our feet, that’s enough.

9-10 But if it’s only money these leaders are after, they’ll self-destruct in no time. Lust for money brings trouble and nothing but trouble. Going down that path, some lose their footing in the faith completely and live to regret it bitterly ever after. (1 Timothy 6:1-10 The Message)

How amazing is God?

September 26, 2012 4 comments

We serve an amazing God. We need to celebrate everything He does for us. Celebrate Him doesn’t quite seem to capture it though. Paul suggests we revel in God. In Greek, the word is χαίρω. It means to rejoice or be glad. It is also used as a salutation or greeting.

Paul is emphatic. In the New American Standard Translation we read it like this. “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!”

God is in a good mood. Whoo hoo!! I am glad. That is some good news. It is an amazing day in paradise.

I mean, revel in him! ~~Apostle Paul (Philippians 4:4 The Message)

Am I flying off the handle?

September 22, 2012 Leave a comment

Here is a concept. Our Father is absolutely perfectly in love with me. He isn’t, can’t, won’t fly off the handle at me. He keeps His cool. I don’t frustrate him. He is amazing. OK, this is much better than a concept. It is real. It is true.

May I love like him. May I never fly off the handle. May I keep my cool.

Love doesn’t fly off the handle. 1 Corinthians 13 – The Message

What am I proud of?

September 8, 2012 1 comment

There are some things to be embarrassed by. There are some  things to be proud of. We have an extraordinary message. It is a powerful message. It is a message to be proud of.

God has plans to rescue everyone (not just religious people).  All we have to do is trust Him. Anyone can do it. The religious don’t have a lock on this deal. It may seem like it but we have good news. It isn’t limited to the religious. It isn’t going to church or leading bible studies that get’s us right with God. It is faith pure and simple. When we believe that Jesus is the Messiah that came to rescue us from a life of missing God’s goal for our life, we have right standing before God.

AND that is a very good deal for sure.

It’s news I’m most proud to proclaim, this extraordinary Message of God’s powerful plan to rescue everyone who trusts him, starting with the religious and then right on to everyone else! God’s way of putting people right shows up in the acts of faith, confirming what Scripture has said all along: “The person in right standing before God by trusting him really lives.” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 1:16-17)

Is it all still a mystery? Will I hear God?

Is it all still a mystery? No, it is not at all.

Much about God’s world came seem mysterious. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way. Jesus got it out in the open. God’s word helps us understand what seemed vague before we came to God and got on the road to know Him every day.

Jesus is clear that he came to make known to us the mystery of how things work in God’s world (Kingdom). He does make everything crystal clear. Will we hear him? That is his challenge to us.

God is open. He wants us to be just like that.

“This mystery has been kept in the dark for a long time, but now it’s out in the open.” ~Apostle Paul (Colossians 1:26 The Message) 

How can I be a blessing to others?

August 30, 2012 6 comments

We need to get back to using blessings when we greet people and leave. How powerful it is to be a blessing to others and speak a good word into their day.

Paul did this and frequently blessed others with

Grace – χάρις – meaning a gift or blessing brought to man by Jesus Christ, favor, gratitude, thanks, kindness.

Peace – εἰρήνη – meaning peace of mind; invocation of peace a common Jewish farewell, in the Hebraistic sense of the health (welfare) of an individual.

How powerful for us and those we know. May I great others with that blessing.

“So I greet you with the great words, grace and peace!” ~~Apostle Paul (Galatians 1:3 The Message) 

Are we pretending to be a know it all?

We all know some “know it alls”. Perhaps some times we also pretend to know things we really don’t.

There are some things we should know and be able to speak about. We should know life, how we get it and keep it, and how serving the Messiah makes it possible. There should be no pretending about that. We serve a “real” God. We have “real” life. Let’s talk about that. That is what we know. We are literate on that.

“They pretended to know it all, but were illiterate regarding life.” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 1:21The Message)

Will I throw up my hands and walk off the job?

 

Will I throw up my hands and walk off the job? No way. I have to be clear about that. I am in this for all eternity.

Sure, some times it gets real tough and it is tempting. Even Paul could admit that. Jesus never promised us it would always be easy. In fact, he did promise that we would see trouble and hard times. He also reminded us that he leads he way and he has overcome. The victory has been won and we can join him in that victory.

God is in a good mood. He is generous to us all the time not matter what.

Since God has so generously let us in on what he is doing, we’re not about to throw up our hands and walk off the job just because we run into occasional hard times.” ~~Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 4:1 The Message) 

 

What is God’s master plan?

August 15, 2012 2 comments

God has a plan.

Stop and think about that.

God has a plan. He has a plan for us. He has had His eye on us. Looking to do great things in and through us.

God has a “master plan” for how everything works together to bring His ultimate designs together. He is God. This is the way he works. He isn’t into “one offs”. It all works together for achieving what He has had in mind all this time.

“Long before we first heard of the Messiah and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.” ~Apostle Paul (Ephesians 1:12 The Message)

Are my prayers for people always spilling over into thanksgivings?

Paul anchors himself in being connected with Jesus who is in charge of his life. Because of that, no matter what, and a lot of tough things happened to him, he is always thanking God. That is just the way he rolled. Whenever he was praying for others he got thankful.

Are my prayers for people always spilling over into thanksgivings? This is a great standard.

May I always be thankful in my conversation with God.

“Our prayers for you are always spilling over into thanksgivings.” ~Apostle Paul (Colossians 1:3 The Message)

Is my goal popularity?

August 13, 2012 8 comments

Is my goal popularity? The Apostle Paul was clear that wasn’t his goal. He knew what his goal was. His focus would lead him to do many unpopular things. There is a danger in caring what others think of us.

Much of our culture seems to focused on measuring popularity. How many friends do I have on Facebook or Twitter? What is my Klout score? Do friends “like” what I post?

Paul knows we should be focused. He knows we should be totally devoted to following Jesus, no matter what. That definitely won’t make us popular. We need to know that and be prepared for it. We should anticipate it with joy. There is nothing to compare with being in love with Him. This has nothing to do with human optimism.

“If my goal was popularity, I wouldn’t bother being the Messiah’s slave.” ~~Apostle Paul (Galatians 1:10 The Message)

Am I focused on the whole picture?

We hear a lot about seeing the “big picture”. The Apostle Paul clearly got that. He realized it is easy to see the details. It is hard to see what he calls the “whole picture”. There is a difference, however, between the big picture and the whole picture. I think it is actually a huge difference.

God’s word, and the insight of the Holy Spirit, gives us the whole picture. The truth, clear truth, helps us see the whole picture.

May I see the whole picture. May I see it today and every day.

“We’re writing plain, unembellished truth, hoping that you’ll now see the whole picture as well as you’ve seen some of the details.” ~~Apostle Paul  (2 Corinthians 1:13 The Message)

Will I do my best?

How often do I dog it, not giving my best?

Paul challenges us to live differently. We have opportunities every day to help work things out. We need to do our best. God has given us his Spirit. We know what He wants us to do. We should do it. No if, and or buts. God is clear. We need to do it.

May I do my best.

And, oh, yes, Syzygus, since you’re right there to help them work things out, do your best with them. (Philippians 4:3 The Message)

Will you trivialize yourself into silliness and confusion?

There are some “real” atheists. There are also many who believe there is a God but don’t believe in God. This is sad, because it is clear they don’t worship the creator of the universe and our loving Father.

What happens as a result. They follow all kinds of silly thoughts and this world’s (Not God’s world) culture. They try to find meaning in mission statements and success philosophies. It gets worse from there. Having their own mission they don’t have God’s and they don’t have true direction.

Of course, there is the opposite of this. I choose this way. I will worship God, the creator of the universe. I will not be trivialized into silliness and confusion. I will be God’s child and love Him as my Father. I will have His direction in my life.

“Refusing to worship him, they trivialized themselves into silliness and confusion so that there was neither sense nor direction left in their lives.” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 1:20 The Message)

Should I try to read between the lines?

Paul is clear about Jesus. His writing is clear about God. God’s word is clear.

There is no “I wonder what he meant” kind of stuff with God. He is in charge in His world (Kingdom). He always has been. He always will be.

What God wants to happen will. There is no doubt about that. It is clear that His desires will be achieved.

It is clear that nothing is impossible with God. He can do anything. He is God.

He is our loving Father. He has wonderful things in store for us. He is in a great mood.

“Don’t try to read between the lines or look for hidden meanings in this letter.” ~~Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 1:13 The Message)

What is God’s mission for me?

July 31, 2012 3 comments

Paul knew something. He wasn’t afraid to say it. God had commissioned him. He was on a mission for God and Jesus. Paul knew why he was doing what he was doing.

Do I know why I am doing what I am doing?

The answer to that is all important. In a world of “you will succeed if you have a mission statement” kind of thinking, what we think our mission is doesn’t matter. What is God’s mission for me?

“I’m God-commissioned.” ~~Apostle Paul (Galatians 1:3 The Message)

Who am I focused on?

July 29, 2012 2 comments

Now here is some great advise from the Apostle Paul. He knew what he was talking about. This is how he lived his life in Jesus. Even when in prison for telling about the Good News of GOD, he would celebrate.

When we celebrate GOD, our focus is on Him and not us. May seem straight forward but much of conversation with God is about us, not Him. That is not the way it should be.

Celebrating God gets us focused on what He wants. That is the way it should be. I should do it all day long. From the time I wake up in bed till the time I fall asleep at night.

Celebrate God all day, every day. (Philippians 4:4 The Message)

What does God have in mind for us?

God is good. There is no doubt about it. The Apostle Paul starts out his message to the Colossians with a blessing. May every good thing be ours.

Is that what God has in mind for us? Yes it is. Is that our blessing to others? Yes, it should be.

May everything good from God our Father be yours! (Colossians 1:2 The Message)

“But it wasn’t by any fancy footwork on our part” ~~Apostle Paul

July 7, 2012 1 comment
Saint Paul with a Scroll and a Sword.

Saint Paul with a Scroll and a Sword. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Paul depended on Jesus and the Holy Spirit to speak about the Good News. He depended on Jesus completely. While he could be eloquent, he learned that it wasn’t of any use. He must have the power of GOD. That is all that matters. Speaking with the power of the resurrected Jesus.

Can I not rely on myself and depend on Jesus?

“But it wasn’t by any fancy footwork on our part” ~~Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 1:12 The Message)

“What happened was this: People knew God perfectly well, but when they didn’t treat him like God….” ~~Apostle Paul

July 7, 2012 5 comments

We all know GOD exists. Sure, there are some atheist but they are really kidding themselves. So lets not think about that. We know there is a GOD. Here is the big question. Do we treat Him like GOD? Think about it. GOD is GOD. GOD is great. GOD is good. We “know it”. Do we believe Him?

If we don’t treat him like GOD, GOD says, in effect, “If that’s what you want, that’s what you get.” This is a case of be careful what you ask for.

“What happened was this: People knew God perfectly well, but when they didn’t treat him like God….” ~~Apostle Paul (Romans 1:18 The Message)

Categories: Devotion Tags: , , , ,
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