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Posts Tagged ‘Luke’

What are the real issues?

December 29, 2012 Leave a comment

“To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable”

I am sure those who had been with Jesus for a while had a hint of what was about to come. Jesus knew how to nail the real issues. Jesus knows that there is a such a thing as false confidence. It is not about what we do that gets us right with God. We need to come to Him with the awareness deep in our soul that there is nothing we have done to receive His gift of an absolutely pure relationship with God. We have missed the mark but Jesus didn’t. And those who are relying on good deeds will look down on others. Double whammy here.

Being religious is of no advantage. Looking down at others is useless. There is only one way to God. Jesus challenges us to see the way.

God is very good. Jesus came with good news. His gift to us that allows us to be friends with God is overwhelming.

Here is the rest of the story:

‘Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Minister (Pharisee) and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people–robbers, evildoers, adulterers–or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ ‘But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ ‘I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.’ Luke 18:9-14

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“On your way! But be careful—this is hazardous work. You’re like lambs in a wolf pack.” ~~Jesus

December 26, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus sends us out into the world to do God’s work. He knows it isn’t easy. In fact, it is hazardous. We are pure in Him, like lambs. Where God sends us is full of wolves.Wolf and lamb

No matter though. He has equipped us with His Holy Spirit. We are victorious in Him. But we need to be careful none the less.

We need to be knowledgeable about what can happen. We need to protect ourselves in the word of God. We need to be full of God’s Holy Spirit. We should not pretend Satan isn’t evil and wants to destroy us.

 “On your way! But be careful—this is hazardous work. You’re like lambs in a wolf pack.” ~~Jesus (Luke 10:3 The Message)

Will I see Jesus today?

December 25, 2012 Leave a comment

When God makes a promise, He is true to His word. His Spirit gives power to the word and it comes to pass. It brings peace into our life. Simeon could have done something else about the time Jesus parent’s brought Jesus to the temple. There were lots of choices for him I bet. In fact, he probably had other plans. But the Spirit was on him and led him.

May I listen to God and not worry about my plans so much.

In Jerusalem at the time, there was a man, Simeon by name, a good man, a man who lived in the  prayerful expectancy of help for Israel. And the Holy Spirit was on him. The Holy Spirit had shown him that he would see the Messiah of God before he died. Led by the Spirit, he entered the Temple. As the parents of the child Jesus brought him in to carry out the rituals of the Law, Simeon took him into his arms and blessed God:

God, you can now release your servant;
release me in peace as you promised.
With my own eyes I’ve seen your salvation;
it’s now out in the open for everyone to see:
A God-revealing light to the non-Jewish nations,
and of glory for your people Israel.
Luke 2:25-32

Do we have room for God?

December 25, 2012 Leave a comment

When it was time to give birth to Jesus, no one had room for Him. So Mary did what she had to do. Humbling circumstances for the King of Kings don’t you think? But that is who Jesus is.

Jesus humbled Himself for our sakes. To redeem us from continually missing God’s goal for our lives, he came to earth as a man, born into circumstances beyond His control.

God wants to know, do we have room for His son? Yes, dear Father, we do.

While they were there, the time came for her to give birth. She gave birth to a son, her firstborn. She wrapped him in a blanket and laid him in a manger, because there was no room in the hostel. ~~Luke 2:6-7

As we celebrate, are we terrified today?

December 25, 2012 1 comment

The sheepherders were minding their own business. Just doing what they do after a long day of work. They were settling in for the evening. But God had different plans for them. He was about to show up and it was sudden. That is the way God is some days. We’re settling in for the evening and BAM, he arrives on the scene. Are we terrified like the sheepherders?

Well, they got some good news and they obeyed God. The angels told them about our dear Jesus and that the Savior had arrived. He was born.Manger

Have we seen God’s glory? Have we heard the good news from the Angels? Are we ready to meet this Savior?

There were sheepherders camping in the neighborhood. They had set night watches over their sheep.

Suddenly, God’s angel stood among them and God’s glory blazed around them. They were terrified. The angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I’m here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide: A Savior has just been born in David’s town, a Savior who is Messiah and Master. This is what you’re to look for: a baby wrapped in a blanket and lying in a manger.”  (Luke 2:8-12 The Message)

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It is my choice. Will I show mercy?

November 25, 2012 Leave a comment

There are experts galore. No lack of those who “officially” know all the rules and regulations. When Jesus asked the question, He got an answer from an expert. So … what is it that God desires from us? Who showed love to his neighbor? The one who showed mercy.

That is what we should do. That is what I should do. This is how we love our neighbors. Have mercy. Be merciful. Show mercy in every way!!! Simple.

The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.” Luke 10:37

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Should I be the judge?

November 23, 2012 1 comment

This theme seems very clear. There isn’t too much to be added here. 8 very specific references citing Jesus, Peter and James. Should I be the judge?

  1. Matthew 7:1 Do not judge, or you too will be judged.
  2. Matthew 7:2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
  3. Luke 6:37 Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
  4. Romans 14:4 Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
  5. Romans 14:10 You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat.
  6. 1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men’s hearts. At that time each will receive his praise from God.
  7. James 4:11 Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it.
  8. James 4:12 There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?

“Other seed fell in the weeds; the weeds grew with it and strangled it.” ~~Jesus

November 9, 2012 4 comments

So we have heard God. But something happens. It isn’t immediate but in fact subtly slow over time.

Life happens is what. We go about our lives. We worry about how we will take care of things. Tomorrow is more important than what God is saying today. We worry. We get consumed with making money. Our focus is on having fun.

What we heard God say gets lost in all this other noise. The weeds of life choke and strangle the Word of Jesus.

May we seize God’s Word. May we hold on no matter what. May we stick with it until there’s a harvest.

“Other seed fell in the weeds; the weeds grew with it and strangled it.” ~~Jesus (Luke 8:6)

Am I Worked up over nothing?

June 5, 2012 2 comments

How often do I go about fussing? Getting worked up over nothing. Worrying about how everything is going to get done. Putting my best “servant” attitude on and letting Jesus know it. I need to get to the essential and choose it. My relationship with Jesus is the most important thing. It is the main course.

May I choose the good part. Why worry?

But the Lord answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42

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Expect nothing in return

Sometimes I am so very tempted to get upset with the “ungrateful”. OK, truth be told, I do get upset. I succumb to the temptation. I feel justified. I blessed them and they didn’t respond. I gave and they weren’t thankful. I go out of my way and they don’t notice. How righteous I feel. What is wrong with them? Oh my goodness. What is wrong with me? Really. I have been ungrateful to my heavenly Father. What is His response?
 
To show me mercy. To be kind. To love me. To lavish His gifts on me. To put His best clothes on me. To give me my inheritance. To prepare a feast for me. To go find an amazing ring and put it on my finger.
 
He does good, is good and is in a good mood. He doesn’t get offended at all. He is God. He is stunningly great. How amazing? Amazing gifts in spite of my ungrateful heart. He is absolutely perfect.
 
May I be merciful like my heavenly Father. REALLY. My reward will be huge. I will be His son.

If you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners in order to receive back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Luke 6:34-36

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They were worried, Jesus wasn’t at all

Here is a lesson in worry from our Master Jesus. He wasn’t worried. He wasn’t anxious. He was just doing what He knew to do which was be in His Father’s house. So, his parents were worried. He was not. I should be concerned about doing my Father’s business and not worry about anything else. And, he continued to grow this way. Stuff just didn’t faze Him because He was listening to His Heavenly Father and just doing what He heard Him saying.

May I be about my Father’s business and grow in His favor. May I worry about whether I am pleasing him.

When they saw Him, they were astonished ; and His mother said to Him, “Son , why have You treated us this way ? Behold , Your father and I have been anxiously looking for You.” And He said to them, “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s house?” But they did not understand the statement which He had made to them. And He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and He continued in subjection to them; and His mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus kept increasing in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men. Luke 2:48-52

 

 

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“One thing only is essential, and Mary has chosen it—it’s the main course, and won’t be taken from her.” ~~Jesus

Martha was busy serving everyone. Mary was relaxed, listening to Jesus. Jesus is clear. Listening to Jesus comes first. First things first. Jesus demands we choose things in the proper order. Listen first, serve second. It is the main thing about the main thing. I need to get this right. Priorities make a difference. This is important.

May I listen to Jesus first and then act / serve.

“One thing only is essential, and Mary has chosen it—it’s the main course, and won’t be taken from her.” ~~Jesus

“The great triumph is not in your authority over evil, but in God’s authority over you and presence with you.” ~Jesus

Some days we get excited about the wrong thing. What matters is God’s complete rule in our life. What mattes is His presence in my relationships. Yes, we have authority and can exercise it. But that isn’t what is important. We must remember that daily. Doing what God wants is the key.

“The great triumph is not in your authority over evil, but in God’s authority over you and presence with you.” ~Jesus

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“If Tyre and Sidon had been given half the chances given you, they’d have been on their knees long ago, repenting and crying for mercy.” ~Jesus

What if Jesus said this to Dallas? I can imagine it. Jesus is in our midst. He is performing great and mighty acts of God right now. Do we see it? Do we change our minds and ask for mercy?

We should. Jesus demands it.

“If Tyre and Sidon had been given half the chances given you, they’d have been on their knees long ago, repenting and crying for mercy.” ~Jesus

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How puzzled would I be?

After Jesus was crucified, he was hastily buried as the clock was ticking moving toward the Sabbath. No work could be done. So they had to wait. And wait. And wait. It must have seemed like an eternity that long Saturday. On Sunday they were up and at it at the crack of dawn. When they got to the tomb, they couldn’t find Jesus body. And they were puzzled. I know I would have been as well. Probably more than puzzled.

But they moved on from being puzzled into belief. The angels explained it all to them. Jesus wasn’t there but raised up from the dead. And they remembered Jesus’ words.

Belief. Faith. Joy.

At the crack of dawn on Sunday, the women came to the tomb carrying the burial spices they had prepared. They found the entrance stone rolled back from the tomb, so they walked in. But once inside, they couldn’t find the body of the Master Jesus.

They were puzzled, wondering what to make of this. Then, out of nowhere it seemed, two men, light cascading over them, stood there. The women were awestruck and bowed down in worship. The men said, “Why are you looking for the Living One in a cemetery? He is not here, but raised up. Remember how he told you when you were still back in Galilee that he had to be handed over to sinners, be killed on a cross, and in three days rise up?” Then they remembered Jesus’ words. via Luke 24 MSG | YouVersion.

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Pride of His life

February 27, 2012 Leave a comment

What an amazing day this was. Jesus goes to be baptized by his cousin, John the Baptist. His Father validates He is His son. The Holy Spirit comes down on Him.

The sign is a dove. The voice is “You are my Son.” “You are chosen.” “You are marked with love.” “You are my pride of life.”

That is our longing. We all want to know we are loved by our Father. We all want to hear He is proud of us.

We get that in His Spirit. We get that in His love. We are chosen.

How cool is that?

After all the people were baptized, Jesus was baptized. As he was praying, the sky opened up and the Holy Spirit, like a dove descending, came down on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “You are my Son, chosen and marked by my love, pride of my life.” Luke 3:21-22

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“Did you have any idea that God’s kingdom was right on your doorstep?” ~~Jesus

February 14, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus has brought in a new World (Kingdom) and new agreement for how we are to live. We are His Ambassadors. We deliver His message to this world. We represent Him. When we aren’t received, people miss God’s World. Awesome responsibility for us and a challenge to those who don’t listen.

May we represent Jesus well. May those in need hear His message of Good News!!

“When you enter a town and are not received, go out in the street and say, ‘The only thing we got from you is the dirt on our feet, and we’re giving it back. Did you have any idea that God’s kingdom was right on your doorstep?’ Sodom will have it better on Judgment Day than the town that rejects you.

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“You’re fussing far too much and getting yourself worked up over nothing.” ~~Jesus to Martha

February 6, 2012 Leave a comment

Mary was paying attention to what Jesus was saying. Martha was busy serving Jesus. Martha go upset Mary wasn’t “helping”. Jesus wants us to listen to Him first. There is plenty of time for serving. Jesus knows this. He wants the serving to come from listening. He wants us to have a heart for God and His word. Love of God comes first. Jesus wants us to have priorities.

“Martha, dear Martha, you’re fussing far too much and getting yourself worked up over nothing.” ~~Jesus

“The Son can introduce the Father to anyone he wants to.” ~~Jesus

February 2, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus is the Son of God. He knows what He is talking about. Here is the good news, He wants to introduce us to His Father. That is what it is all about. Jesus wants us to have a passionate relationship with His Father. Jesus is the way to that relationship in the new plan of God. It is a new day with God through Jesus.

“The Son can introduce the Father to anyone he wants to.” ~~Jesus

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“The one who rejects you, rejects me.” ~Jesus

January 29, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus has given us His authority. We are His ambassadors to His world (Kingdom) here on earth. We fully represent Him. If this world rejects Jesus they reject God who sent Him. Jesus calls on us, in fact demands us, to get this deep in our souls. When we command things to happen, in the name of Jesus, they happen. We represent Him. Lock, stock and barrel.

“The one who rejects you, rejects me. And rejecting me is the same as rejecting God, who sent me.”~Jesus

“But if your greeting of peace is not received, take it back and get out. Don’t impose yourself.” ~~Jesus

January 23, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus knows that when we send His peace to a house and there is no peace, it is time to pack our bags and hit the road. His peace is our guide. This is very important to know.

“But if your greeting of peace is not received, take it back and get out. Don’t impose yourself.” ~~Jesus 

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“When you enter a town, heal anyone who is sick, and tell them, ‘God’s kingdom is right on your doorstep!’” ~Jesus

January 17, 2012 Leave a comment

Jesus doesn’t make it complicated for us. He wants us to replicate what He is doing. He sends us out. We do the same things He is doing. The message to share? God’s government and complete rule is here. Our prayer? Our Father’s will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

It’s all about God. He is in charge. Completely. He is God, good and great!!

“When you enter a town and are received, eat what they set before you, heal anyone who is sick, and tell them, ‘God’s kingdom is right on your doorstep!’~~Jesus (Luke 10:8-9)

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Words of strength and heart

November 14, 2011 Leave a comment

John the Baptist was an amazing man of God. His words gave strength to people. His words put heart in them. Of course, they also offended the powerful. But John was faithful to the Message. His focus was on delivering God’s message of hope. He did not focus on who he would offend in the process.

May I have his same faithfulness. May I speak words that give people strenght and heart.

There was a lot more of this—words that gave strength to the people, words that put heart in them. The Message! But Herod, the ruler, stung by John’s rebuke in the matter of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife, capped his long string of evil deeds with this outrage: He put John in jail. Luke 3:18-20

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So be careful that you don't become misers of what you hear

I guess there are some things to be a miser about. Jesus suggests, however, that God’s word is not one of them. He expects us to proclaim the Message He has given us. We should be generous with what He tells us. God is in charge of His country. He is generous with His message to us. He expects us to be the same.

Something to be careful of for sure.

“So be careful that you don’t become misers of what you hear.” –Jesus (Luke 8 )

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Possibilities

Imagine being a young woman. You are a virgin. An angel shows up and lets you know you are going to give birth to the Son of God. You ask how that can be since you are a virgin. He lets you know that the Spirit of God will make it happen AND nothing is impossible with God.

NOTHING. Not a thing. EVERYTHING is possible.This word of God has been challenging my heart and soul lately. I know I have had things I didn’t believe God could do. I am leaning in to hear the word of our Father. If he says it, I can count on it. Nothing is impossible.

So here is the deal. When the Angel said nothing is impossible, Mary said, “I am the LORD’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.” Then a little while later Elizabeth (John the Baptist’s mother) said “Happy woman, who believed what God said, believed every word would come true!”

For nothing is impossible with God. Luke 1:37

May I have faith to believe our LORD. Nothing is impossible.

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A mere stagehand

John was doing some amazing things. People were coming out to see him in droves. He was clear and he was careful. It wasn’t about him. It was about Jesus. He saw himself as the stagehand. His message about Jesus was amazing:

  • He would ignite the Kingdom life in us.
  • He would bring a fire within us, the Holy Spirit.
  • We would be changed from the inside out by Him.
  • He would make a clean sweep in our lives.
  • He puts everything in proper perspective.
  • Everything in our life that is trash is burned in the fire of His Spirit.

But John intervened: “I’m baptizing you here in the river. The main character in this drama, to whom I’m a mere stagehand, will ignite the kingdom life, a fire, the Holy Spirit within you, changing you from the inside out. He’s going to clean house—make a clean sweep of your lives. He’ll place everything true in its proper place before God; everything false he’ll put out with the trash to be burned.” Luke 3:16-17

May I see who this drama is about. May I know I am the stagehand.

Just the facts?

Luke got it right. Knowing and having supernatural courage (faith) about Jesus is what it is all about. He made it his mission to present “the facts”. He investigated it down to the last detail. Imagine having been there and seen and known so many who experience Jesus. Imagine getting it right and writing about it. It is ours and we can know too. What a story. Thanks for men like Luke.

So many others have tried their hand at putting together a story of the wonderful harvest of Scripture and history that took place among us, using reports handed down by the original eyewitnesses who served this Word with their very lives. Since I have investigated all the reports in close detail, starting from the story’s beginning, I decided to write it all out for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can know beyond the shadow of a doubt the reliability of what you were taught. Luke 1:1-4

May I know beyond a shadow of a doubt about the reliability of what I have been taught.

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Jerusalem

Jesus destiny was in Jerusalem. God’s goal for Him would come to pass there. He would die and be raised from the dead by the amazing power of the Holy Spirit. But notice how this was framed. He took the 12 aside and clearly said “We”. Jerusalem just wasn’t for Jesus. The good news of the new agreement God has with us is that we have died and been raised to a new life in Him. Oh my goodness.

Then Jesus took the Twelve off to the side and said, “Listen carefully. We’re on our way up to Jerusalem.” Luke 18:31

May I see how I am a new human being in Him. May I know that the old me was crucified with Him and the new me was raised up in Him.

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Kiss your plans goodbye

Jesus has a way of being clear. He leaves no doubt. In God’s world, God comes first. That is all there is to it. We can’t negotiate with Him.

So, kiss everything else goodbye if you want to follow Jesus.

Yes, you heard it right. Jesus said it and Jesus meant it.

“Simply put, if you’re not willing to take what is dearest to you, whether plans or people, and kiss it good-bye, you can’t be my disciple.”  Luke 14

May I have the courage to kiss all my plans goodbye. May He come first always.

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God's world is here now

We keep looking. We think, some day we will go to heaven. We hold out hope.

We don’t get it.

God’s world is already here. We must live it now. We must stop looking for a day when things will get better.

Grilled by the religious leaders on when the kingdom of God would come, answered, “The kingdom of God doesn’t come by counting the days on the calendar. Nor when someone says, ‘Look here!’ or, ‘There it is!’ And why? Because God’s kingdom is already among you.” ~~Jesus (Luke 17:20-21)

May I see God’s world today. May I know it is already here.

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Adversity stimulates creative survival

There are all kinds of ways to be smart. Jesus tells the story of a rascal and how he outsmarts his boss by being creative before he was about to be fired. He commended him in being resourceful. Jesus wants us to be pratical. He knows trouble is coming our way. He promised it.

Adversity helps us focus. Let’s keep it simple and really live. Focusing on being good isn’t God’s way. He wants our passion.

“I want you to be street smart, using every adversity to stimulate you to creative survival, to concentrate your attention on the bare essentials, so you’ll live, really live, and not complacently just get by on good behavior.” ~~Jesus (Luke 16)

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Frustration

As parents, we know the frustration of asking our children to do something, only to discover the completely ignored us. You can almost hear the frustration in Jesus voice over the issue of listening and doing.

Our mission is to love. That is it, plain and simple. Love lays a solid foundation. It will stand the test of time.

Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built. Luke 6:46, 49

May I have a well built house. May I put into practive what Jesus says.

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Jesus is radical

Jesus is radical. Jesus is the ultimate change agent. Jesus is the ultimate disruptor. Jesus upsets relationships. Jesus doesnt make everything nice. Jesus will confront us.

This is always His pattern. Jesus is not Mr. Rogers with a beard.

Yes, Jesus is radical. And, He calls for us to be radical for Him. Have I set something on fire for Him today? Have I challenged something for Him today?

“I’ve come to start a fire on this earth! I’ve come to change everything, turn everything rightside up! Do you think I came to smooth things over and make everything nice? Not so. I’ve come to disrupt and confront! From now on, when you find five in a house, it will be—

Three against two,
and two against three;
Father against son,
and son against father;
Mother against daughter,
and daughter against mother;
Mother-in-law against bride,
and bride against mother-in-law.” ~~Jesus (Luke 12)

God doesn't need a bailout

Jesus paints an amazing contrast on priorities. Most of us are worried about our 401k. Our treasure is in our retirement fund. Our perspective is how the stock market is fairing.

Jesus demands we invest in God’s Kingdom not our 401k. Our retirement is in heaven with Jesus. God doesn’t need a bailout.

“Get yourselves a bank that can’t go bankrupt, a bank in heaven far from bankrobbers, safe from embezzlers, a bank you can bank on. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.” ~Jesus (Luke 12)

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We're not hiding things; we're bringing everything out into the open

We like to hide. We don’t like to be transparent. There are things about us we don’t want others to know. Now, that is about us. It is not about God.

Jesus came that we might know God. Know him to the fullest. Know Him like He always intended. It is not about us. It is about Him.

“We’re not hiding things; we’re bringing everything out into the open.” Jesus (Luke 8 )

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We're not keeping secrets; we're telling them

Jesus was into full disclosure and transparency. What He saw His Father doing is what He did. No cover ups. No secrets.

In fact, He came to reveal the mysteries of the Kingdom of God. His Message is all about revealing secrets. He calls on us to do the same.

“We’re not keeping secrets; we’re telling them. “ –Jesus (Luke 8)

No more detours

 Under the old plan, the road could get very bumpy. All curves and careful driving was the order of the day. John came with a new message to get things ready for Jesus. No longer would there be any detours. The way would be straight and easy. It would never again be a problem to see God’s salvation parade.

The main message is that we would be forgiven for missing God’s goal for our lives. That message had never been delivered before. God would no longer judge us. He would forgive us. And Jesus would deliver it to us.

In the fifteenth year of the rule of Caesar Tiberius—it was while Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea; Herod, ruler of Galilee; his brother Philip, ruler of Iturea and Trachonitis; Lysanias, ruler of Abilene; during the Chief-Priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas—John, Zachariah’s son, out in the desert at the time, received a message from God. He went all through the country around the Jordan River preaching a baptism of life-change leading to forgiveness of missing God’s goal, as described in the words of Isaiah the prophet: Thunder in the desert! “Prepare God’s arrival! Make the road smooth and straight! Every ditch will be filled in, Every bump smoothed out, The detours straightened out, All the ruts paved over. Everyone will be there to see The parade of God’s salvation.” Luke 3:1 -6

Everything is possible

December 25, 2010 Leave a comment

Imagine being a young woman. You are a virgin. An angel shows up and lets you know you are going to give birth to the Son of God. You ask how that can be since you are a virgin. He lets you know that the Spirit of God will make it happen AND nothing is impossible with God. NOTHING. Not a thing. EVERYTHING is possible.

This word of God has been challenging my heart and soul lately. I know I have had things I didn’t believe God could do. I am leaning in to hear the word of our Father. If he says it, I can count on it. Nothing is impossible.

So here is the deal. When the Angel said nothing is impossible, Mary said, “I am the LORD’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.” Then a little while later Elizabeth (John the Baptist’s mother) said “Happy woman, who believed what God said, believed every word would come true!”

May I have faith to believe our LORD. Nothing is impossible.

For nothing is impossible with God. Luke 1:37

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She got dinner for them

December 8, 2010 Leave a comment

It doesn’t matter why they asked Jesus to do something for Simon’s mother-in-law. They wanted Jesus to do something for her. They weren’t specific and that was ok.  He did the ultimate thing, probably more than they thought he would. He was very direct. He told the fever to leave. It did. Nothing is impossible with God.

And so, she got dinner for them.  

He left the meeting place and went to Simon’s house. Simon’s mother-in-law was running a high fever and they asked him to do something for her. He stood over her, told the fever to leave—and it left. Before they knew it, she was up getting dinner for them. Luke 4:38-39

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Wormy Apples and my heart

December 1, 2010 Leave a comment

I don’t like wormy apples. No one does. It is just not right. The ultimate gross out for sure. I love fresh, juicy apples. So, I must begin with my heart. I want healthy fruit.

So what is in my heart? Do I long for what counts? Am I starting with what matters and working from there?

May I have healthy fruit that comes from a pure heart. May my true being spill forth from my heart.

You don’t get wormy apples off a healthy tree, nor good apples off a diseased tree. The health of the apple tells the health of the tree. You must begin with your own heart. It’s who you are in your heart, not what you say and do, that counts. Your true being brims over into true words and deeds. Luke 6:43-45

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Simple trust

November 26, 2010 Leave a comment

The Roman Centurian was very humble and knew that Jesus could give the command and his servant would be healed. He didn’t need to come to Jesus himself or have Jesus come to him. Imagine having the kind of faith that shocks Jesus. It is simple trust. If we know that Jesus has the authority, that takes care of it.

“Taken aback, Jesus addressed the accompanying crowd: “I’ve yet to come across this kind of simple trust anywhere in Israel, the very people who are supposed to know about God and how he works.” Luke 7:9 (MSG)

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