There’s A Storm Coming

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4 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. — Matthew 7:24, 25 NIV

In the early days of aviation, long before the technology that produced GPS and other navigational aids, pilots would fly using only visual references. Using nothing but their sense of direction, the location of the sun and familiar landmarks, they were able to go from point to point.  They would often pick out a road and follow along that route.  Pilots kept the aircraft upright, straight and level by watching the horizon and the pressure they would feel on their posterior to determine if they were ascending or descending.  This type of flying became known as “flying by the seat of your pants”.   Because the pilot used only his physical senses, he would, at times, become slightly disoriented.  Needless to say, this type of flying often ended up with the pilot flying or following a path that was not always a straight line.  If the pilot became too disoriented and confused, the result was a crash often ending in the pilot’s death.  The pilots could only fly in clear skies so that all the physical landmarks would be visible to the human eye.  At that time, it was impossible to fly above a cloud layer or through storms. Aviators had to wait until technology was developed to help them navigate and maintain orientation to fly above the clouds and through the stormy weather.
How many of us live our lives “by the seat of our pants” depending only on our feelings and the things that we can see to guide us?  Like the old pilots, we may do all right as long as there is clear weather, no storms, no clear air turbulence and no major wind shifts to blow us off  course.  But what happens when the storms of life come? What happens when our feelings lead us off course? We have Someone that we can trust to carry us safely through the storm.  When our sense of purpose fails us, we have One who will keep us on course and fly us straight to safety.  But, God is not satisfied with being our navigator or our copilot, He wants to be our Pilot and He does not need a navigator.  He doesn’t want to be our Pilot just in the storms, He wants to be our Pilot in the clear skies as well.  With God, the plan is always “all in” or it won’t work.  Build on the Solid Rock and trust Him with every part of your life.

 
“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous
Post 09-13-2018

Build On a Firm Foundation

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24 “Therefore, everyone who listens to these messages of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on a rock. ​ Matt. 7:24 ISV
 
We can read the Word, study the Word and memorize the Word, but as long as it remains head knowledge only, it will have little, if any, effect on the way we live. James tells us that even the demons believe there is a God and we know that satan quoted scripture in his attempt to deceive Jesus.  Until we receive the Holy Spirit and He interprets those Scriptures for us, we have little or no heart knowledge.  It is out of the abundance of the heart that we speak and act.  Just as the anointing oil that Moses poured on Aaron’s head ran down on his beard, and onto his tunic, the message must run down from our brain to our heart.  James tells us to be doers of the Word and not hearers only.  We will not practice doing the teachings and Words of Jesus until it affects our hearts.  So, in those times when we feel God isn’t in control and the house seems a little shaky, perhaps, we should check the foundation.  Is our lifestyle based on the Word and do our thoughts and actions reflect heart knowledge of the Word of God?  If not, maybe we need to ask God to help us remodel from the ground up. Tear out all that fleshly, worldly stuff and build on the Solid Rock. Then when the wind blows and the storms come, the house will not be shaken. Then, we will stand like a lighthouse in a storm and bring others safely to the shore.

 

58 My dear brothers and sisters, stay firmly planted—be unshakable—do many good works in the name of God, and know that all your labor is not for nothing when it is for God. — 1 Cor. 15:58 The Voice

 

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

Post 09-07-2018

The Eye of the Storm

even-smaller-bug-light13 You will keep in perfect peace  those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.4 Trust in the Lord forever,  for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal. — Isaiah 26:3, 4 NIV

The eye of a hurricane is the calmest part of the storm, there is usually no wind and the skies are clear.  It is usually true that the stronger the storm the better defined the eye of the hurrciance will be.  The eye is surrounded by an eyewall of thunderstorms that contain the most dangerous weather.  When a hurricane is at sea, the eye is still calm except at sea level where waves may reach a height of 130 feet.  If we can compare the violence of the world around us to a hurricane, we can see that there is a place of peace and calmness in the middle of all that chaos. But we can’t just sit on the surface and wait, we have to prepare for the storm by keeping our eyes on Jesus and not on the world.  By trusting completely in Him, we can rise above the waves and live in peace in the midst of the storm. When the storm starts to dissipate, the eyewall will start to break down and we will experience some winds but they will not be strong enough to harm us.  There will be some rain but only enough to water us and make us grow, not enough to wash us away. God never allows more than we can bear.  If we choose to focus on the world and its carnality, we will find ourselves in the eyewall of the storm. But if we repent and pray Peter’s short prayer. “Lord, save me”, He will str​e​tch out His hand and pull us to safety.  We can’t stop the hate and violence in the world, but God has provided a place of peace and safety for His children. The choice is ours.  We can choose to stay focused on Jesus and live in the peace that He gives us or stay where we are and live in the chaos.

10 Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, ​ yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,”  says the Lord, who has compassion on you.  ​ — Isaiah 54:10 NIV​

Post 01-19-2016

Living Our Lives “By the Seat of Our Pants”?

even-smaller-bug-light124 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. — Matthew 7:24, 25 NIV

In the early days of aviation, long before the technology that produced GPS and other navigational aids, pilots would fly using only visual references. Using nothing but their sense of direction, the location of the sun and familiar landmarks, they were able to go from point to point.  They would often pick out a road and follow along that route.  Pilots kept the aircraft upright, straight and level by watching the horizon and the pressure they would feel on their posterior to determine if they were ascending or descending.  This type of flying became known as “flying by the seat of your pants”.   Because the pilot used only his physical senses, he would, at times, become slightly disoriented.  Needless to say, this type of flying often ended up with the pilot flying or following a path that was not always a straight line.  If the pilot became too disoriented and confused, the result was a crash often ending in the pilot’s death.  The pilots could only fly in clear skies so that all the physical landmarks would be visible to the human eye.  At that time, it was impossible to fly above a cloud layer or through storms. Avaitors had to wait until techonology was developed to help them navigate and maintain orientation to fly above the clouds and through the stormy weather.
How many of us live our lives “by the seat of our pants” depending only on our feelings and the things that we can see to guide us?  Like the old pilots, we may do all right as long as there is clear weather, no storms, no clear air turbulence and no major wind shifts to blow us off  course.  But what happens when the storms of life come? What happens when our feelings lead us off course? We have Someone that we can trust to carry us safely through the storm.  When our sense of purpose fails us, we have One who will keep us on course and fly us straight to safety.  But, God is not satisfied with being our navigator or our copilot, He wants to be our Pilot and He does not need a navigator.  He doesn’t want to be our Pilot just in the storms, He wants to be our Pilot in the clear skies as well.  With God, the plan is always “all in” or it won’t work.  
Build on the Solid Rock and trust Him with every part of your life.
Post 01-17-2016

A Secret Formula??

even-smaller-bug-light127 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. — John 14:27 NIV

In our daily lives, why do we not experience the peace that God has made available to us? Is there a secret to finding and holding onto that peace?  Is it necessary to do something special or quote a particular verse to access the peace that God has so freely given to us?  Is that peace for now or for some time in the future?  Is that peace even real?  If we could discover how to find and hold onto that peace, wouldn’t it be a great blessing to us and a great message to a world in chaos? 
Maybe, it starts with our definition of peace.  God’s peace isn’t the absence of troubles or violence or loss or storms.  It is learning to have peace while we live in and go through those times.  Jesus, as a man suffered rejection, ridicule, betrayal, and tremendous persecution, yet He did not sin by worrying or being afraid, but held onto the peace that the Father gave Him.  We say,”Yes, but Jesus was _______”  and you can fill in the blank.  The truth is that while He was on earth, Jesus was fully human.  He walked, talked, grew tired, rested, became hungry and ate common food. He was, in fact, just like us, except that He didn’t sin. He is our example that peace is not a lack of certain issues but a gift that we must learn to experience everyday.  When He was in the boat with the disciples in the midst of the storm, He slept.  The disciples became anxious and feared for their lives. Jesus spoke, the storm dissipated and peace was restored to the sea. Jesus is with us in the boat as we sail through life.  When the storms come, ask Him to speak to your storm and experience His peace. So, it is not some secret formula, it is complete faith in believing what Jesus said.
Post 01-16-2016

Doubts and Distractions Will Come

God is waiting to show you the way.

God is waiting to show you the way.

21 One day when the crowds were being baptized, Jesus himself was baptized. As he was praying, the heavens opened, 22 and the Holy Spirit, in bodily form, descended on him like a dove. And a voice from heaven said, “You are my dearly loved Son, and you bring me great joy.–Luke 3:21,22 (NLT)
18 The disciples of John the Baptist told John about everything Jesus was doing. So John called for two of his disciples, 19 and he sent them to the Lord to ask him, “Are you the Messiah we’ve been expecting, or should we keep looking for someone else?”–Luke 7:18,19 (NLT)
28 I tell you, of all who have ever lived, none is greater than John. Yet even the least person in the Kingdom of God is greater than he is!”​–Luke 7​:28 (NLT)

John the baptist baptized Jesus in the Jordan River and saw with his own eyes God’s Holy Spirit come down in bodily form like a dove and He heard the voice from heaven confirming that Jesus was the Son of God. We would think that nothing could make him doubt who Jesus was. Yet, when John was in prison. we can see that he began to have doubts about Jesus being the Messiah and sent two of his disciples to inquire if Jesus was, in fact, the Messiah.​ Notice that Jesus did not criticize or condemn John but rather paid him a great compliment. At that time, the time before Jesus had been crucified and resurrected, Jesus said that John was the greatest man to have ever lived. ​But he qualified His statement saying that “the least person in the Kingdom of God is greater than he” Although, John baptized with water, there was no salvation or baptism in the Spirit until after Jesus was resurrected and ascended. Since Jesus did not condemn John or any of the disciples for having doubt and “little faith”, neither does He condemn us when doubts enter our minds. He draws us to Himself and gives us peace in the middle of the storms.​​
Post 03-31-14

Peace in Every Situation

God is waiting to show you the way.

God is waiting to show you the way.


4 Always be joyful in the Lord! I’ll say it again: Be joyful! 5 Let everyone know how considerate you are. The Lord is near. 6 Never worry about anything. But in every situation let God know what you need in prayers and requests while giving thanks. 7 Then God’s peace, which goes beyond anything we can imagine, will guard your thoughts and emotions through Christ Jesus.–Philippians 4:4-7 (NLT)
When we follow Paul’s advice, we find that we have a whole new outlook on life. We also find that the joy of the Lord is contagious and those around us will soon be rejoicing with us. Then God’s peace will guard our thoughts and our emotions. This peace is not an absence of offenses and bad situations, it is a peace in those situations. We live in a world of wars, violence and chaos, but we, as Christians, can experience an inner peace in the midst of the storm. As someone once said, “When we are in a storm, sometimes God calms the storm and sometimes He calms us.” Either way, we can have that peace that the world knows nothing about. So rejoice and give thanks, sing spiritual songs, psalms and hymns. Thanksgiving and praises are the life jackets in the sea of life​.
27 “I’m leaving you peace. I’m giving you my peace. I don’t give you the kind of peace that the world gives. So don’t be troubled or cowardly.–John 14:27 (NLT)
Post 01-22-14