Give Cheerfully and Abundantly

even-smaller-bug-light1

13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.–Romans 12:13 NIV

God has appointed each of us to be stewards of certain resources.  We should always remember that those resources originated from and belong to Him. We, as His children, are the distribution system He has chosen to use. How well we do that can have a direct result on how much of His resources we are allowed to manage.

21 “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’–Matt. 25:21 NIV

Our love and charity should begin at home.


8 Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.–1 Tim. 5:8 NIV

Then, each church congregation should take care of it’s members.


9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.–Gal. 6:9,10 NIV

Then, we are instructed to love our neighbors, which, in Biblical context, is everybody. We show this love by practicing hospitality to everyone. It behooves each of us to ask the Holy Spirit to show us how to be better stewards of the resources God has given us.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 03-20-2018

Giving It All Up For HIS Sheep

even-smaller-bug-light1

Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep. – John 21:17a NLT
 

 

They had caught 153 fish in one haul, talk about an abundance! Jesus came that we might have abundant life (John 10:10). This was the third time they had seen Jesus since the Resurrection, so they knew who He was. Now, Jesus asks Peter a simple question. “Do you love me more than these?” Peter answers “Yes, Lord, you know I love you”. Jesus then said to Peter “take care of my sheep”. It is as if Jesus is saying to Peter, do you love me enough to leave these other disciples to go and feed my sheep. The third time Jesus asks He uses a different word for love that is asking Peter how deeply do you love me? Jesus says for the third time, “Feed my sheep”. The question for us then is this: Do we love Jesus enough to leave family, friends and home to feed His sheep? We come to the same question that we must ask ourselves everyday. Are we willing to give up everyone and everything to follow Jesus?
23 Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me. 24 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.—Luke 9:23, 24 (NLT)

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

Post 12-15-2017

Taking Care of the Family

even-smaller-bug-light1

15 I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. – John 17:15 NLT
 

We have the privilege of listening into a personal conversation between Jesus and our Father. As we read through the prayer that Jesus is praying for His disciples, we get a little glimpse of His love and compassion for them. Jesus is not asking God to remove all the bumps, He is asking Him to keep them safe as they travel the rocky road. He is also asking our Father to teach them the truth. Jesus, as the oldest of all God’s children, is taking the responsibility of being sure that the family is being taken care of while He is separated from them. Of course, He knows that our Father is going to take good care of the disciples, but His compassion demands that He set the example for them to ask. Not only that, but He is paying in advance for their care by giving His life on the cross. Jesus is the perfect example of a servant, a brother, a friend and a Redeemer.

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

Post 11-25-2017

Where He Leads Me, Will I Follow?

even-smaller-bug-light1

57 As they were walking along, someone said to Jesus, “I will follow you wherever you go.”  – Luke 9:57 NLT
 
We all know the old hymn, “Where He Leads Me, I Will Follow”.  We sing it quite often in worship services across the nation regardless of the denomination.  It is a great invitational song for getting people to commit to the mission fields. But I wonder if we really hear the words that we are singing or if we are just making noise. I think we need to change the song for a while and sing “Where He leads me, will I follow?”.  Will I go on a mission trip? Oh no, can’t spare the time for that.  Will I visit those in prisons? Nope, not my calling.  Will I visit the sick in the hospitals and pray for their healing? Again, I just don’t feel the call.  Will I feed the hungry? Well, you know I give to charities to do that. Will I walk across the street to witness to my neighbor? You know, they might be offended, really need to be careful there.  Will I ask a lost family member if we could pray together? Well. they are not going to listen, they know I’m not perfect.  Don’t I need a calling to do those things?  Well, here is our calling,
18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Matt. 28:18-20

 

HEAR IT!  HEED IT!  NOW!

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

Post 07-09-2017

Honor the Family Name

even-smaller-bug-light112 Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world. – 1 Peter 2:12 NLT


Before we accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we were just one in a mass of people. Now that we have accepted Him and because of God’s great mercy, we have been adopted into a family, the family of God. We now bear the name of Christ and our conduct should reflect our new identity. Just as a newborn baby is automatically a citizen of the country into which they are born, so are we citizens of heaven the very moment we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior. The baby has all the rights and privileges afforded by that citizenship even though he/she is unable to take advantage of them at that moment. The same is true of a newborn babe in Christ Jesus. We have all the rights and privileges afforded the citizens of heaven. We are “citizens with the saints” .

19 So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family.–Eph. 2:19 (NLT)

There is no waiting! We have all the rights of a citizen of heaven now! We need to walk carefully and be alert at all times because we do not want to embarrass our new family. We must be careful of the things we do and say so that outsiders will have no reason to speak negatively about our Lord and Savior. Our honorable behavior brings glory to God and his body, the Church.

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

Post 06-20-2017

Join the Family

even-smaller-bug-light1

11 So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God.  —Romans 5:11 NLT
There is only one Creator who would create a creature knowing that it would require His death to redeem that creation. What kind of Creator has that much love for His creation?  God, and God alone, because He alone is complete, pure love. God, as the man Jesus did not die for some bogus religion of the world. He died to renew the relationship that He had with man in the Garden of Eden. We call that relationship, Christianity. There is no comparison of Christianity to any religion in the world. Christianity is eternal because it is based on Jesus Christ, who died and was resurrected for our sins. He knew from before the foundations of the earth that He would have to do that. Sin took away that relationship and introduced all kinds of false hopes, which the world calls “religions”. All those religions are named after and founded on the teachings of dead men. But, praise God, Christianity is named after and based on the teachings of a LIVING GOD and SAVIOR! One who longs to talk to You and show You His love in the tiniest details of Your Life.

If, up until now, you have only experienced “religion”, it is time for you to get into a “relationship” with the One and Only Living God and Savior, Jesus Christ. He is standing at your heart’s door and knocking. Open up to the most beautiful and meaningful relationship you will ever know.

Post 10-09-2016

Gotta Tell Somebody!

even-smaller-bug-light1

14 But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? — Romans 10:14 NLT
 
 
When we accepted Jesus as our Savior, we became a part of a family and took on the family name, Christian.  One of the biggest responsibilities that comes with the family name is telling others about our new family and inviting them to become a part of that family.   “Go and make disciples”  isn’t a suggestion, it is a command.  That doesn’t mean that we all have to lay down what we are doing and go to foreign countries but it does mean that wherever you are is your mission field.  “Go” to your family, your neighbor, your business associate, your friends and your enemies.  Telling others about Jesus should be considered a privilege and it should be a joy for us to do it.  When God called us to be His child, He had a plan and a purpose for us.  He has a part for each of us to play in building His Kingdom here on earth and in heaven.  Can we be Christians without “going and telling”?  Each of us should ask God that question and seek His answer diligently.  Can we be happy, joyful Christians without “going and telling”?   Since not telling is being disobedient, I seriously doubt it.  If you have never experienced the joy of leading someone to Christ, ask God to give you that opportunity today. 
Post 08-12-2016