Keep Praying for Our Country

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23 “As for me, I will certainly not sin against the Lord by ending my prayers for you. And I will continue to teach you what is good and right. 24 But be sure to fear the Lord and faithfully serve him. Think of all the wonderful things he has done for you. 25 But if you continue to sin, you and your king will be swept away.” 
— 1 Samuel 12: 23-25 NLT
I would like to urge and encourage each of us to keep on praying for our nation.  Pray that our current leaders will lead us in paths of righteousness so that we can return to being “one nation” instead of a nation divided by greed, selfishness and ethnic differences.  Pray that we will stop being Americans separated by hyphens.  That we will all just be Americans.  A nation divided cannot stand.  Pray that the voters will be led by the Holy Spirit and vote for those that will continue to lead us back to God.  Pray that there will be a great renewal that starts in each of our hearts and spreads throughout our communities and our country.​ Let each of us remember the many great blessings that God has poured out on this country and teach those things to future generations.  If we refuse to humble ourselves before God, as individuals and as a nation, we and our country will be swept away.  Pray that God will be merciful to us just as He was to the Israelis.

44 You will know that I am the Lord, O people of Israel, when I have honored my name by treating you mercifully in spite of your wickedness. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!” — Ezekiel 20:44​

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 11-06-2016

The Presence of God Sets Us Apart

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15 Then Moses told the Lord, “If your presence does not go with us, don’t bring us up from here. – Exodus 33:15 ISV
 
Oh, to be more like Moses, to come to the full realization that the only thing that makes a Christian different from the world is the presence of God in our lives. Without God, we are nothing and can accomplish nothing of eternal value, with God, we can do all things. Moses refused to rush ahead, even refused to move unless he could be sure the presence of God was with Him.  A great lesson that we need to learn to survive in this hectic, chaotic society based on instant gratification.  We need to learn to wait on God.  Not wait as in sitting in our easy chair, but wait as a military guard waits at his post.  Wait with purpose and vigilance, defending our post from intruders.  A guard is well-trained to defend the home front and to protect those at his position. He has read the manual more than once, knows who and what to look for and what questions to ask. Are we prepared?  Have we read our manual? Do we know the enemy?  Are we prepared to defend our faith?  Can we explain to others why our God is the only true and living God and why the name of Jesus is the only name in heaven and on earth by which a man can be saved?   The Holy Spirit, through Paul, charges us to always be ready to give an answer.

1 I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead when he comes to set up his Kingdom: 2 Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching— 2 Timothy 4:1, 2 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 10-01-2018

Continue to Teach and Encourage New Converts

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But when I could stand it no longer, I sent Timothy to find out about your faith. I was afraid that the tempter had tempted you in some way, and that our work had been a waste of time.– 1 Thess. 3:5 ISV
Paul continues to show his love and concern for the new converts in all the places he has been preaching and teaching. He does this not only by sending letters to several of the churches with instructions to share them with others, but also, by sending Timothy and others back to encourage them and check on their welfare.  It seems to have become a tendency for us to only talk about the love of God for us.  Unlike Paul, we do not stress the fact that the road is not always smooth.  In our lives as Christians, we will experience difficulties of various sorts and we will be offended, We need to be sure that new converts understand this while assuring them of the love of Jesus.  We will be tempted over and over but God always provides a way out. Jesus promised us that we would have troubles, but at the same time, He reminded us that He had overcome the world.

 
 33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
— John 16:33
Not only did Jesus overcome the world, but he made it possible for us to be conquerors and overcomers as well. 
 
 4 You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. — 1 John 4:4
 After we have taught new converts John 3:16, let us not forget to also teach them another verse, so when duty calls they will be ready to answer.
 
 23 Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. — Luke 9:23, 24 NIV

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 07-13-2018

Choices, Decisions, Consequences

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25 He chose to share the oppression of God’s people instead of enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin. – Hebrews 11:25
Every day, we make choices about the things in our lives.  A lot of those decisions are almost robotic or habitual.  We do this at this time because we always have.  Some decisions require us to actually consciously think about them before we decide what to do.  Every now and then, we have what we refer to as “big” decisions.  These are the things that affect our lives today and in the future. Some of those decisions will be irreversible and affect all the people in our circles of influence whether we want them to or not.  Some of us will be given opportunities to make world-changing decisions, maybe all of us.  Do you think Moses had any idea that his decision that day was a world changer?  To him at that time, it was probably a small decision that only affected the lives of a few people. But, consider this, “what if” Moses had not made the decision he made. “What if”, he had decided that he liked the riches and the glory of Egypt more than his people, what would have happened? Reminisce with me today. Let’s think back over our lives, how many “what if” times have we had?  How many times has God given us opportunities to change our little corner of the world and we made the wrong decision?  The next person the Holy Spirit nudges us to witness to could be God’s choice to be the Moses or the Billy Graham of the next generation. “What if” we don’t follow the leading of the Holy Spirit and talk to that person about salvation?  Today, let’s make a renewed commitment to be faithful in following the leadership of the Holy Spirit and encourage those around us. Let’s be faithful in the “little” things because “what if” there aren’t really any “little” things in our lives?  Now is “the time” and where you are is “the place” to make that “big” decision!

 

14 For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” — Esther 4:14 NIV

 

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

Post 05-19-2018

Mercy Mixed With Fear

even-smaller-bug-light123 Take others out of the fire, and save them. Show mercy mixed with fear to others, hating even their clothes which are dirty from sin. ​ – Jude 23 NCV

We live in the times Jude is describing in these verses. Everyday, we read more and more articles and hear more comments about people who either disrespect Christianity or refuse to believe in God. They are becoming much more militant in their actions each day, demanding more and more rights but at the same time wanting to limit the rights of others. They use all manner of deception and false claims that others are mistreating them. We must stand firm in our beliefs and refuse to compromise the truth that is laid out in the Scriptures. God has not changed His mind about what He knows to be sin. After all, does the Creator not know what actions will harm the creatures He so lovingly created? Which of us can say to the Creator, “hey, you made a mistake”? After all God is Omnipotent, Omnipresent, and Omniscient. We must encourage new believers to stand firm and grow in the faith. We do this with love and mercy, just as God has shown love and mercy to us. We “snatch others from the flames of judgment” by witnessing to them about Jesus. We must do this also with great love and mercy, not judging them for their sins, but showing them a different way of life. We must love the sinner and hate the sin just as God does. As we do this, we must be sure not to allow the sins to contaminate our lives​.


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 07-28-2017

Stand As One

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24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.  — Hebrews 10:24 NLT

If we are going to encourage one another, then we need to pray for each other and also we need to pray together. We need to meet with other Christians on a regular basis. Worshiping and praising God together is a great way to encourage each other. If we fail to communicate with other Christians on a regular basis, we tend to become discouraged in our walk with God. One of satan’s tactics is to separate us from each other. He uses the same tactics as animals that are predators. They separate one of the prey from the herd and it is much easier for them to kill the one they have separated. After all, satan is a “roaring lion” seeking those he can destroy. We must work together and be accountable to God and each other so that we don’t go on sinning. It is a good idea to have someone you respect and trust to be accountable to on a weekly basis. Just knowing that you are going to have to tell someone everything you did this week will help you to overcome temptations.

Philippians 2:1-5 NLT


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 05-04-2017

Hold On! – He’s Coming!

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16 So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. — Hebrews 4:16 NLT
In the Old Testament, the priests were chosen from the tribe of Levi, but Jesus is from the lineage of the tribe of Judah. The Levitical priests gave temporary sacrifices that had to be repeated over and over. They even gave sacrifices for “unknown” sins, just in case somebody had missed one. But Jesus came into our world and suffered the same temptations we go through. He did this without sinning, but having suffered through those, he can empathize with our weaknesses. He became the perfect and last sacrifice necessary for sin. After suffering death on the cross, He was made our High Priest and now stands at the right hand of God interceding for us. No more sacrifice is necessary, we just need to accept His forgiveness and live a life modeled after His life here on earth. We will stumble and fall, but He is there to ​ intercede for us, encourage us and​ pick us up.
 
Romans 8:31-34 NLT


“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

Post 04-26-2017