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Turn Discouragement into Prayer

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Every once in a while I find myself getting so discouraged with the way the world is spiraling downward. Crimes against babies, crimes against children, tyrannical leaders, brothers and sisters in Christ being persecuted, and sin being blasted from every facet of society. If we let it, it can get quite overwhelming. This week when I was feeling particularly sad and discouraged about things when the Holy Spirit reminded me that all this is a call to prayer. I can’t fix any of it by myself. I can’t hold back the tide of wickedness in the natural. Complaining and getting upset will not change one thing. However, what I can do is talk to my Father about it. I can lay it all at His feet. He IS able to do something about it.

In my distress I cried to the Lord, and He heard me.”~Psalm 120:1

Difficult times are often used to draw us closer and the unbelievers to find Christ. We can be quite content to go on with life as usual when things are good, with little time spent with the Lover of our soul. When things get difficult and we know things are beyond our “fixing” is often the time we look beyond ourselves for help and answers. This can be true for the believer in Christ and the unbeliever.

You have done many good things for me, Lord,
    just as you promised. I believe in your commands;
    now teach me good judgment and knowledge. I used to wander off until you disciplined me;
    but now I closely follow your word. You are good and do only good;
    teach me your decrees. Arrogant people smear me with lies,
    but in truth I obey your commandments with all my heart. Their hearts are dull and stupid,
    but I delight in your instructions. My suffering was good for me,
    for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees. Your instructions are more valuable to me
    than millions in gold and silver.~ Psalm 119:65-72

So rather than allow discouragement to bring us down we should allow it to nudge us toward the One who has all the answers. Spend time with Him. Talk to Him about what has you grieved. Ask Him for ways you can make a difference. Ask Him to use the dark times to draw your unsaved loved ones to Christ and to draw you into deeper prayer and intimacy with Him.

Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad?
I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again my Savior and my God!~Psalm 43:5

Blessings!

LYING HERE, DECEPTION THERE-HEED THE RIGHT VOICE

Every day we draw closer to the day of our LORD’s appearance! When we turn on our electronic devices or listen to the news we can see the forces of darkness encroaching in on our world. Men and women are being used to perpetuate fear, dread and separation among families, friends and communities. The media is collaborating with the oligarchs in trying to push out a constant stream of division and so many are falling for the lies being pushed. BE AFRAID OF YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS. BE AFRAID OF ANYONE THAT DIFFERS IN OPINION TO YOU.

It is tragic that even some followers of Christ have accepted this mantra and are allowing fear, an enemy of faith, to govern their actions. Fear is keeping them from reaching out to others and sharing the gospel. It is keeping them from gathering with fellow believers as we have been told to continue to do, even more so as the day of the LORD draws closer.

I pray that we all will take our eyes off of the current agenda and focus on the Creator of the universe. The ONE that is able to keep us through storms, trials and anything else that may come at us. The ONE that is still in control. He has already told us how things end and HE and we win! Though we see leaders of every level of government seemingly pushing the same agenda, worldwide, we do not need to fixate on their plans.

“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.”~Matthew 10:16 The Holy Spirit will give us the discernment and wisdom to see what is going on if/when we ask Him. He will also equip us to navigate through the mire while retaining our love for others. It is so easy to get caught up in bitterness and anger towards those bringing about the current tyranny worldwide. One only needs to look at Australia to see how the people are being oppressed on every level. Our natural inclination is to say, “LORD where are you? Why aren’t you doing anything to help the people?” However, none of this is catching God off guard. In fact He warned us about what would be coming to this world. He also told us to not be afraid! It is not up to us to deal with those oppressing the people. It is beyond our capabilities. That being said, we need not worry about the instigators getting away with all these things. Jesus told us as much.

Then He said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come, but WOE TO HIM through whom they do come!~Luke 17:1

When the Son of God says, “Woe to him,” we know they will be dealt with in God’s time. Our job is to continue to speak the truth, love on others, encourage the body of Christ and share the gospel with those we meet. Unapologetically.

So if you are feeling overwhelmed with all you see and hear, turn your eyes back onto the Savior. Ask Him for discernment which you will need to see what is really going on and for the wisdom to walk through it in victory! Let His voice drown out all the fear and division. Titus 2:1-13 tells us how to live while we wait on the appearance of our beautiful King!

As for you, Titus, promote the kind of living that reflects wholesome teaching.  Teach the older men to exercise self-control, to be worthy of respect, and to live wisely. They must have sound faith and be filled with love and patience.

 Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. They must not slander others or be heavy drinkers. Instead, they should teach others what is good.  These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children,  to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God.

 In the same way, encourage the young men to live wisely.  And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching.  Teach the truth so that your teaching can’t be criticized. Then those who oppose us will be ashamed and have nothing bad to say about us.

 Slaves must always obey their masters and do their best to please them. They must not talk back  or steal, but must show themselves to be entirely trustworthy and good. Then they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive in every way.

 For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people.  And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God,  while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed.

Be blessed!

LYING HERE, DECEPTION THERE-HEED THE RIGHT VOICE

Stand and Stand UP

It is so important today that we stand for righteousness in a world greatly lacking truth. Too often the people of God just go along to get along. They think being “nice” is the most important way to behave. Well there are times being “nice” is not the solution but rather being bold and standing up for truth. It is so important that we stand against evil that would like to control our children, grandchildren and fellow men and women.

Are you taking a stand for truth or just quietly going along so as not to draw attention to yourself? Please know that tyrants rule when people refuse to take a stand and speak up for truth. We have seen too many pulpits stay quiet and refuse to engage in conversation about government overreach. Instead they are trying to fly under the radar and by doing so refuse to encourage their bodies to speak out for truth. If you know something is dangerous should you not warn others to avoid the danger? If you know lies are being perpetuated in most of the media and social platforms, should you not warn others to stay close to the Master and spend less time being indoctrinated by lies and propaganda?

Please get involved in your children’s school plans. Know what is being taught. Speak up when you see lies and demonic agendas being pushed. Contact your local member of Parliament when you are aware of bills being voted on that will negatively affect not only you but generations to come, should the LORD tarry. If you are still on social media and have been quietly hiding your faith stop! Share the gospel. Dare to speak up when someone challenges your faith. Be ready in season and out to say why you believe what you believe.

The days of being afraid to speak up or stand up for truth are over. Jesus Christ Himself told us that things would get difficult. He also told us that we would receive the Comforter that would help us, guide us and tell us things to come.

However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.  He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.  All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.~John 16:13-15

With the Holy Spirit guiding, us we will be equipped to do the work the Father has planned for us. We do not need to be afraid! In fact, there is no place for cowards in the Kingdom of God.

But the COWARDLY, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”~Revelation 21:8

Being cowardly only demonstrates that we do not have the faith to believe Christ will see us through that which He has called us to do. That being said, this doesn’t mean we won’t feel fear when we are lead to do something that requires courage. However, we are not to allow that fear to keep us from obedience!

So seek the LORD for what it is He wants you to do at this time. Ask Him ways that He can use you to spread the gospel and stand for truth and righteousness. He has a plan for you and is faithful. He will speak to your heart and lead you through whatever it is that He is calling you to do. There are too many of God’s own people hiding in the shadows and that is one thing He has never called us to do.

Blessings!

Just WHO can we trust?

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD. And whose hope is the LORD. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes; but its leaf will be green, and will not be anxious in the year of drought, nor will cease from yielding fruit.”~Jeremiah 17:7-8

If there was ever a time for us to trust in the LORD it is surely now. Our world, globally has become an unstable mess of deception and tyranny. Through schemes and some very dark agendas, we are seeing much of what we once counted on disappear. Governments have become so corrupt in many cases, that they don’t even try to hide their lies and agendas anymore. They have become emboldened, while using a health crisis as a reason to strip citizens of their rights and freedoms.

We are seeing our economy collapse due to overspending and corruption. We are being warned of current and upcoming shortages in food, gas, electricity etc. all done by orchestrated design. To sum it up, people no longer trust or rely on their governments to help them out of the world’s current mess.

We are currently living in the beginning of the perilous times the Bible warned us of. So that said, while we wait on the appearance of our beautiful King Jesus, should we wring our hands in fear and stress?

NO!

Our trust and hope is not in man, our hope is in the LORD! The same LORD that took care of Daniel during the days of his captivity by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The same LORD that took care of Joseph after being sold into slavery by his jealous brothers. The same LORD that provided a way out for Esther and the Jewish people by preventing them from being annihilated.

These are but three real people that lived in perilous times and GOD made a way for each of them. He will make a way for us too. It is time for us to stay close to His side, pray without ceasing and go about doing His business until our precious Savior comes to take us home. There is little this world has to offer us in comparison to the beautiful mansion Jesus has prepared for us in Heaven!

Stay close to Him. Seek Him daily. Pray continually. Remember our time here is very short in comparison to eternity with Jesus Christ! Be the “blessed” man or woman that hopes and trusts in the LORD. Don’t be anxious or fearful. He never takes His eyes off of you! As you lean into Christ, ask Him to help you be fruitful and yield a harvest of souls for His Kingdom while we wait on his glorious appearance!

Blessings!

Are YOU Asking for Direction?

I remember many years ago knowing the day would come when we would begin to see so many prophecies come to pass. I wasn’t sure exactly how many of them I would live to see but I knew since Israel had become a nation again things would begin to unfold.

Today we don’t have to look far to see the written words from in some cases thousands of years ago, be lived out before our very eyes. That is both a little frightening and very exciting. If we have been born again, through the blood of Christ, and are living our life for Him, we have much to be excited about. Our beautiful King of Kings will soon be appearing for His church.

Wickedness and lawlessness are on the uptake as the days draw to a close for our soon appearing King. Some days it’s hard to navigate exactly what the LORD would have us do with all the tyranny we see about us. However we have only to ask Him how we can serve Him and share the good news, when the world sees nothing but bad news.

If you are wondering what you can do in these strange times, simply ask God what He has for you to do. We are all here at this time by design, He definitely has a plan for each of us to fulfill. The words of Isaiah really blessed me this morning. They are so appropriate for the times we are living in. Despite the “heavy yoke of oppression,” that surrounds many of us, we must still do good.

Isaiah 58:9-12

“Remove the heavy yoke of oppression.
    Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors!
 Feed the hungry,
    and help those in trouble.
Then your light will shine out from the darkness,
    and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.
 The Lord will guide you continually,
    giving you water when you are dry
    and restoring your strength.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
    like an ever-flowing spring.
 Some of you will rebuild the deserted ruins of your cities.
    Then you will be known as a rebuilder of walls
    and a restorer of homes.

Don’t be discouraged. Don’t be afraid. Instead seek the LORD for instructions on what you can be doing during these days. Remember, if you know Jesus Christ as Savior, you have the answer to the world’s problems. He is the answer. He will take care of His own, just as He is taking care of you and I during these rough times.

Be well & be blessed!

Modern Day Wrestling in Real time

After listening to this older video (Seven steps to Revival part 5- Witchcraft in Disguise) today I couldn’t help but note how absolutely accurate Derek Prince’s words were.

The globalist’s agenda is the epitome of witchcraft. Take a look at this site which lists their areas of desired control. http://www.globalistagenda.org/

Please take a listen and note all the similarities we are seeing today with the plans of the globalist’s on God’s planet and on His people. Derek Prince was a true man of God that had wisdom in droves. I am thankful we can hear his wonderful teachings even today, many years after his death. Please listen to the wisdom of his words in this video.

 Revelation 21:8 “But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars–their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”

Galatians 5:19-21 Now the actions of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, rivalry, jealously, outbursts of anger, quarrels, conflicts, factions, envy, murder, drunkenness, wild partying, and things like that. I am telling you now, as I have told you in the past, that people who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Keep your hearts right before the LORD and be blessed!

Anyone feeling a little weary?

Anyone else out there get a little weary from time to time with all the life restrictions and tyranny put on us by our worldly governments? We can see worldwide globalists pushing their agenda through country after country. Religious freedoms are being attacked, people’s personal freedoms are being attacked and with all this there is a heaviness in the air.

I was personally encouraged so much this morning by the Word of God. Let me share Hebrews 12:1-4.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.  We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now He is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.  Think of all the hostility He endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up.  After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin.

Despite getting weary, we must not give up. The race is still on. Nothing has changed in God’s plan. You were born for a time such as this. So join me in stripping off every weight that slows us down (especially the sin that so easily trips us up) and run with endurance the race God has set before us! As we stay close to Christ and are lead by the Spirit, we can press on and fulfill the things He has called us to do.

For many of us, our opportunities for ministry are very different and appear more limited due to lockdowns, etc. However, lets choose to allow ourselves to be sensitive to the Spirit of God and do all He leads us to do. Be available. Be obedient. Share the gospel in the opportunities that present themselves. Perhaps reach out to a family in need to help with a meal or some groceries. Do that which the LORD leads you to do. There are so many hurting people right now that need encouragement. Christ is the answer to all of the woes of this world. Remember that as you walk through your day and as you meet other people in grocery lines etc.. Wherever God has placed you, run the race and don’t allow yourself to stay weary. Remember ALL that Christ endured and did for you! His love is enough to push us over the finish line as we await His beautiful appearance to call us home.

Be blessed!

Pray and Prepare

As followers of Christ, our trust will always be in God. We KNOW He is the One who will bring us through whatever we must face in the future. By abiding in Him, He will guide us and give us the wisdom and discernment we need to navigate. One thing I have sensed lately is a leading to prepare for difficult times that may be coming as a result of the financial overspending of our governments. That along with the fact that many people are losing their jobs and are being put in very difficult financial stress. As long as this pandemic is drawn out, this will only increase. On top of all this, governments all over the world are having animals slaughtered due to potential covid contamination. Whether there is any legitimate reason to do this or not they are creating a future environment of limits of food. All of this can be researched online and it leads me to promote that each of us put away some dry goods and canned goods along with bottled water for the future.

The idea of preparing for potential shortages and increased hardship is not taking away from the fact our God will see us through. It is however using wisdom based on what is currently happening. Your ability to take care of your family and perhaps others in need will be a huge advantage in such a case. But those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith. Such people are worse than unbelievers. (1 Timothy 5:8) The signs are all here for us to see that difficult days are coming economically and spiritually. This would also be a very good time to reduce unnecessary spending and work on reducing or ridding your life of debt. The governments are not going to be reliable to count on in this coming storm. So for each of us to prepare in whatever way we can is wise. Remember how God used Joseph to prepare for stormy days and he was used mightily in staving off starvation for his people.

I would suggest each of us pray and ask God what it is we can do to prepare. This will vary greatly depending on our location, our financial situation and the resources available to us. I do believe it is a good idea to do what we can. A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences. (Proverbs 27:12)

Preparing is not replacing our trust in God. We know ultimately God has us in His hand and will care for us but that does not mean when we see what is coming, we are to ignore it and not do what we can to prepare. That is just wisdom. So do not get stressed or anxious. Ask God for direction in what it is you can do and than do it. He tells us that if we need wisdom we are to ask and He will give it to us freely! If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. (James 1:5) If you are not in a position to do anything at this time, do not worry. God knows that. He has your back!

Have a blessed day!

Do Your Part

Things are certainly changing in our world and so are the attitudes of many towards the body of Christ. Christians are being considered as radicals that are intolerant of things considered wicked by God. Many followers of Christ are finally waking up to realize that they can no longer count on any form of government for support or shelter. Though this will make life much more difficult it will also help us to realize that our security has never been and never will never be in our rulers. Our security comes from our relationship with Jesus Christ alone, along with the support of our brothers and sisters in Christ. We, in North America, are now being faced with this when Christians all over the world have been dealing with this reality for decades and in some cases centuries.

With some of the new legislations coming about we are being weaned off of milk and are being forced to search for the meat of the Word. The church of the future will no longer be about entertainment and comfort but will instead be about those who really want to stay close to the LORD and are willing to risk much to gather and support and build up one another in faith. Our faith is likely about to be tested like never before.

Though our future may look scary we have to remember that we were born for a time such as this. None of what is happening is a surprise to God. He knew when we were formed in our mother’s wombs what the future would hold for us. He will see us through whatever comes our way. My prayer is that believers will get serious about their walk with Jesus and stop wasting time on things that really don’t matter in eternity.

If you can’t find a church that is keeping it’s doors open why not start a small group in your own home? Spend time encouraging and building up the body of Christ. Allow your home to be a place where people can hear the gospel, perhaps even for the first time. If you don’t want to preach or teach yourself there are a number of excellent preaching/teaching videos you can purchase or even watch on the internet for free and than discuss afterwards. Prayer, worship and communion can be done beautifully in a small group setting in your home. Find a way to continue to meet and grow in your faith with other believers. It is vital.

It is sad but many churches will never open their doors again. Home church is a great alternative for those who find themselves church orphans. With religious freedoms being attacked it may be the way of the future for all believers worldwide. Ask the LORD if this is something He would like you to do and if it is pray for direction on how to go about starting it. Another option is to house a small group bible study. Perhaps even tap into an online bible study through your church and have others who may not have access to the internet attend and be able to enjoy good solid teaching.

Moving forward in our new reality, it is so important we don’t isolate ourselves from other Christians. Too many have gotten comfortable staying in their own homes watching a 30 minute message from their couch and than doing nothing the rest of the week to support or build up the body of Christ. That is NOT what we have been called to do. We are to be about our Father’s business until He takes us home or we see the face of our beautiful Savior when He appear to take us home. Isolation makes us vulnerable to deception and loneliness. God didn’t create any of us to be islands. We are to function as a body with many parts, each one important in it’s own way. So ask the LORD for direction on what you can do to fulfill your part.

Hebrews 10: 23-25 Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.  Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.   And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.

Have a blessed day!

Time for Trusting

When we look around us today we see so many areas of concern. Freedoms are being eroded. Propaganda is being pushed in all media formats. Financial insecurity is increasing. There are many reasons for people to be concerned, especially those that don’t put their trust in Jesus Christ.

But for those of us who do put our trust in Christ, we do not need to fear the future. This earth is NOT our home. We have a mansion waiting for us that our Savior has gone to prepare! Jesus Himself told us in John 14:1-4 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.  And where I go you know, and the way you know.” Let that sink in. Jesus Himself has prepared a mansion for each of us that love Him! I am sure our new home will be so much more beautiful than anything we could ever live in here! And Jesus Himself is coming again to take us up with Him. That is exciting news!

If you find yourself getting heartsick about the current situation turn off the news and open your Bible. Let GOD’s word bring you peace and encouragement. Talk to the LORD. Give your fears and concerns to Him and let His Word wash over you and strengthen your faith. Trust Him. He will see you through the days ahead. You were born for a time such as this because God NEVER makes mistakes.

I’m going to end this message today with words from Psalm 5. Read them aloud and rest in the truth of each line.

But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You;
Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them;
Let those also who love Your name
Be joyful in You.
 For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous;
With favor You will surround him as with a shield. (Psalm 5:11,12)

Blessings!

Fess Up

As followers of Christ it is so important that we remove a major roadblock to our prayers being heard. That may seem like a very strange comment but it really isn’t. We have a part in this. So what is this roadblock? Unconfessed sin. Too often we rush into the presence of God and start making requests when we have neglected to confess our sins first and ask for His forgiveness. We know that if we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us of all unrighteousness! (1 John 1:9) This is a beautiful fact to remember. However as we look at our Bibles we will see that not confessing our sins and just making our requests known will not ensure His hearing or answering of our prayers.

Psalm 66:18-20 If I had not confessed the sin in my heart,  the Lord would not have listened.
 But God did listen! He paid attention to my prayer. Praise God, who did not ignore my prayer  or withdraw his unfailing love from me.

Isaiah 59: 1,2 Listen! The Lord’s arm is not too weak to save you, nor is His ear too deaf to hear you call.  It’s your sins that have cut you off from God.  Because of your sins, He has turned away and will not listen anymore.

Micah 3:4 Then they will cry to the Lord, but He will not hear them: He will even hide His face from them at that time, because they have been evil in their deeds.

Jesus told us in Mark 11:25, 26 But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too.”

The importance of confessing our sins is emphasized so heavily in the book of Corinthians where we are told just how important it is to do before partaking in Communion.

1 Corinthians 11:27-29 So anyone who eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord unworthily is guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord.  That is why you should examine yourself before eating the bread and drinking the cup.  For if you eat the bread or drink the cup without honoring the body of Christ, you are eating and drinking God’s judgment upon yourself.

Perhaps the reason some of our prayers have not been answered is because we have approached God with an unrepentant heart and ignored just how important it is we remember He is holy. He is just. He is God. Not just a Santa Clause like figure that we can run to regardless of the condition of our heart and give Him our want list.

So why not start your day off on the right foot and confess your sins. Start your day clean and right before God, knowing that any sin barrier has been removed and you can commune with Him throughout the day. Though He hates sin, He is well aware that we are flawed humans and through Jesus Christ His precious Son, He has made a way for us to be able to come boldly before His throne in prayer. And don’t forget to take time to thank Him for the fact that if we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins!

Have a blessed day!

This Little Light

I woke up this morning and that song, “This Little Light of Mine,” was playing in my head. Though it’s a simple child-like song it is full of truth. Today, with the current geopolitical situation it is so critical we let our light shine. People are fearful and uncertain about the days ahead. Leaders seem to give people more reason to not trust than to trust their leadership. People are much more open to hearing why you and I still have peace!

I believe with all my heart that the LORD wants us to shine our light everywhere we go right now. There are still so many living in the darkness without the joy of salvation. People that used to be hardhearted to the gospel in comfortable and much more stable times are now more open to hearing some Good News!

With Biblical prophecies being fulfilled before our very eyes we can rest assured that our beautiful Savior will soon be appearing for His Bride. I would encourage each of you followers of Christ to encourage yourself in the Word. Stay in fellowship with other believers. Keep in close contact with God in prayer and share the gospel with those you know and love and those you meet. Eternity for many, may just be a conversation away. Use what remaining time we have to ensure you have been faithful to Christ and you have run the good race.

John 9:4,5 We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the One who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work.  But while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.”

Be blessed!

Share what’s important!

There are so many hurting people today that desperately need to hear the Good News! Our world is a huge mess and there are people dealing with job losses, restrictions on their freedoms, sickness, discouragement, fear and so much more. We the church have what they need. We have the Good News and it’s so important that we share it in whatever way and to whoever God puts in our paths.

All the prophetic signs show that it is but a little while before our beautiful Savior appears to take His bride back with Him. Once that happens this earth is going to be a hellish place to be! Think about all those people you know and love. Do you want any of them left to deal with what will happen during the Tribulation period? I’m sure you don’t. I know I wouldn’t wish the Tribulation on my worst enemy. It will make our current day look like a Sunday picnic.

So let’s determine to share the gospel of Christ with everyone we can. Use your social media platforms. Call friends. Speak to your neighbors. Be a good example of a Christ follower wherever you go so that if anyone asks why you have peace you can tell them that Jesus Christ gives us a peace that passes understanding. Regardless of our circumstances. Time is short. It is so important that we use it wisely. Share the gospel today with someone. What have you got to lose? Keep in mind, they have absolutely everything to lose without Christ.

Mark 16:15,16 And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.  Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned.

Blessings!

Discouraged? Well take heart.

There are days we can be easily discouraged by watching evil prevail around us. There is so much injustice and corruption at every level of government and in every aspect of this world we live in. If we keep our eyes solely on what is around us we have very good reason to be discouraged. However, that is not the way for the follower of Christ to live! We are to live by faith knowing that one day justice will prevail. God is not blind to what is going on. He is not ignoring the cries of the persecuted or the unjustly maligned.

A day is coming when He will deal with all of this. Take heart, He hears our prayers. He hears the cries of His children all over the world. Though the world shuns this fact, God will not hold blameless those who have rejected His Son and lived a life of deceit and wickedness. His desire is that all would be saved, but that being said, if people continue to reject Him a day of reckoning is coming.

This morning I was reading the book of Malachi. These words stood out.

Malachi 4:1-3

The Lord of Heaven’s Armies says, “The day of judgment is coming, burning like a furnace. On that day the arrogant and the wicked will be burned up like straw. They will be consumed—roots, branches, and all.

 “But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.  On the day when I act, you will tread upon the wicked as if they were dust under your feet,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

So don’t be discouraged Christians. God will bring about judgment one day. Those who are arrogant and wicked and that choose to persecute the righteous will one day be consumed. God’s word does not change. He is ever faithful. While we wait on the day of peace and justice let’s be sure to be about our Father’s business. Let’s be sure to bring as many people with us to Heaven. Share your faith today with someone. Let people know, while there is still time, that Jesus Christ, the Sun of Righteousness, came to this world to save them from their sins. Time is short. Let’s use it wisely.

Be blessed!

HE is our all!

It is a beautiful thing that God included the Psalms in the Bible. The inspired words written by David are such a blessing to us when we go through dark days. I find great comfort in knowing David did not have it easy. He had many victories but he also had many times of great trials. The thing is David knew where to turn when those trials came. He knew there was no where to go but to God.

This is something all of us must learn in our walk with Christ. There really is no where else to go to. The world cannot offer us true comfort or security. Our families, though very important in our lives, cannot offer us eternal hope. Our hope must be in our unchanging and secure Savior, Jesus Christ. The One who promised He would never leave us or forsake us! I would like to encourage you today to read Psalm 27 with me. Read it out loud and let it sink in that David’s words are as true for you and I as they were for him.

The Lord is my light and my salvation
    so why should I be afraid?
The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger,
    so why should I tremble?
 When evil people come to devour me,
    when my enemies and foes attack me,
    they will stumble and fall.
Though a mighty army surrounds me,
    my heart will not be afraid.
Even if I am attacked,
    I will remain confident.

 The one thing I ask of the Lord
    the thing I seek most
is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
    delighting in the Lord’s perfections
    and meditating in his Temple.
 For he will conceal me there when troubles come;
    he will hide me in his sanctuary.
    He will place me out of reach on a high rock.
 Then I will hold my head high
    above my enemies who surround me.
At his sanctuary I will offer sacrifices with shouts of joy,
    singing and praising the Lord with music.

 Hear me as I pray, O Lord.
    Be merciful and answer me!
 My heart has heard you say, “Come and talk with me.”
    And my heart responds, “Lord, I am coming.”
 Do not turn your back on me.
    Do not reject your servant in anger.
    You have always been my helper.
Don’t leave me now; don’t abandon me,
    O God of my salvation!
 Even if my father and mother abandon me,
    the Lord will hold me close.

 Teach me how to live, O Lord.
    Lead me along the right path,
    for my enemies are waiting for me.
 Do not let me fall into their hands.
    For they accuse me of things I’ve never done;
    with every breath they threaten me with violence.
 Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness
    while I am here in the land of the living.

 Wait patiently for the Lord.
    Be brave and courageous.
    Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.

Let each of those words sink deeply into your heart and when you feel overwhelmed by the circumstances of life read this Psalm out loud again! We, through Christ, can claim every promise of God for ourselves. HE is our light, HE is our salvation, HE is our fortress and we, like David, can rest in knowing that we can and must trust HIM for everything we need to get through whatever comes our way. So take heart today! Be brave and courageous and wait patiently for the LORD. Be confident that you will see HIS goodness while in the land of the living. Be assured that even if your mother or father abandoned you, HE will hold you close!

Blessings!

OUR Refuge

People all over the world are waiting to see what happens in the USA come January 20th. A land of freedom appears to be losing their freedom just as many of us all over the world appear to be. The virus has been used to restrict our movements and visits with family and friends. It’s restricted some from gathering to worship. Freedom of speech is being attacked regularly and people of faith continue to be ostracized. Many of God’s children have felt oppressed during these days. Regardless of how things turn out with the US, one thing will not change. Our Savior will never leave us or forsake us. He will be with us and guide us as we seek His will in all of this.

King David penned some powerful words that are so valuable at a time such as this. In Psalm 9:9,10 he tells us some solid truth that we can depend on, no matter what happens.

The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; for You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.

What a beautiful truth! For those of us who know His name we can put our complete trust in Him. He has never nor will ever forsake those who seek Him. Praise God!

So as we approach this coming season of possible trouble, we really need to begin each day spending time with Him in prayer and in His Word (Bible). He is to be our refuge. You may ask, what does that even mean? Well the meaning of refuge is as follows:
Protection or shelter, as from danger or hardship. A place providing protection or shelter.

He is our protection! He is our shelter from danger and or hardship! And we can run to Him because He is our place of protection and shelter! Though at times we look to man for help, our true refuge can only be found in Christ Jesus. If this past season of trouble has taught us anything, it should be that no one man or woman can save us. Our help truly can only be found in Christ! So today, be sure to spend time in His shelter. Talk to Him and listen to what He has to say to you. Encourage yourself in His Word. That will equip you for the purposes He has for you today.

Blessings!

Time is Too Short to Waste

Brothers and sisters in Christ, if there were ever a time to pray that time is now. We see prophecy unfolding before our very eyes. Every day is one step closer to the Great Tribulation. Worldwide countries are implementing more and more rules in order to prepare people for the coming new world order. There is no coincidence this is happening at a time such as this. The Bible warned us these days would come and we are now seeing them on our doorstep. No longer can people ignore the massive changes that have been brought about using the pandemic as a platform for change.

All that being said, the most important thing we can do at this time is pray. Pray for our unsaved loved ones. Pray for our leaders that have allowed themselves to be blinded by greed, power and many other things. Pray for our children and grandchildren. Pray for those in ministry. Pray for wisdom. Pray for discernment. Pray for the body of Christ all over the world.

Along with prayer, we must keep ourselves in the word of God. Daily. There is no replacement for allowing the word of God to feed us spiritually. Less television. Less news. Less activities that will not bring about any growth. We need to be strong in the Lord for the days ahead. We are not to lay in bed with the blankets pulled over our head and wait on Christ’s appearance. We need to be abiding in Christ as we fulfill the purposes He has called us to do.

If you’ve been waiting to share the gospel with someone, share it now. If you’ve felt lead to get involved in some type of ministry that would allow you to serve the Lord, do it now. Stop waiting for things to go back to normal. The future is never going to be the same as our old “normal.”

Run the race that Christ has set before you. Let go of any bitterness or malice. Let go of any unforgiveness. Don’t allow old Slewfoot to distract you with things that will keep you from accomplishing what the Lord has called you to do. Apostle Paul warned us of these days. 2 Timothy chapter 3 was written for days just like this. Take heart and listen to his words to Timothy.

You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times.  For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred.  They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good.  They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.  They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!

They are the kind who work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence of vulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires.  (Such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth.)  These teachers oppose the truth just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses. They have depraved minds and a counterfeit faith.  But they won’t get away with this for long. Someday everyone will recognize what fools they are, just as with Jannes and Jambres.

But you, Timothy, certainly know what I teach, and how I live, and what my purpose in life is. You know my faith, my patience, my love, and my endurance.  You know how much persecution and suffering I have endured. You know all about how I was persecuted in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra—but the Lord rescued me from all of it.  Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.  But evil people and impostors will flourish. They will deceive others and will themselves be deceived.

 But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you.  You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.  God uses it to prepare and equip His people to do every good work.

Doesn’t this sound familiar? Corruption, deception and evil flourishing? You don’t have to look far to see all of the above. However, I love how Paul finishes here with just how we are to go through the days ahead. Remain faithful to the things you have been taught! Know the Scriptures as they give you wisdom that lead to salvation and they teach us what is true and where we may be going wrong in our lives. The Scriptures correct us and teach us to do what is right and God will use it to prepare and equip His people for every good work. That is the format! That is why it is imperative we stay in the Word of God. Daily.

So as we navigate through 2021 and wait on our Blessed Hope of Christ’s appearance to take us home, pray more. Keep an open line of communication with our Father. Spend time in the Scriptures for all the reasons Paul gave us! Do every good work that God sets before you. Stay about your Father’s business while we wait on His Son to call us home.

Be blessed!

Words of Assurance

Our world has become quite hostile to the things of God. The very words Jesus spoke can cause rage in many today. To those of us who love Him, His words are words of life and encouragement. To a world that despises Him and His followers, they are words of offence.

Though this seems to be increasing everywhere and in every level of government or society, we the followers of Christ do not need to feel alone or abandoned. We have NOT been. God did not leave us as orphans without help or direction. Jesus, Himself, told us in

John 14:25-27 I am telling you these things now while I am still with you.  But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative—that is, the Holy Spirit—he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you.

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.

What tremendous words of comfort and encouragement. We are not alone. Whatever comes our way, the Holy Spirit will teach us everything we need to know and remind us of everything Jesus told us through His Word and through His disciples. Also Jesus Himself told us, and He does NOT lie, that He has left us, His followers, with a gift of peace of mind and heart. A peace that the world will never be able to offer us. He also told us to not be troubled or afraid! If there were ever words needed today it is these very words!

We can count on the Holy Spirit teaching and reminding us daily of what we need to know as we read the Word of God and remain in prayer. He will speak to us and through us if we allow Him to. We can trust that whatever is coming, we can still have peace. What a treasure that is!

So today, lean into the Word of God (Bible). Pray and ask God for direction and guidance through the Holy Spirit. He will not disappoint us. He will keep us on the right path. Fight the good fight. Stand up to injustices and share the gospel to everyone and anyone the Lord puts in your path. Time is short and we need to use our time wisely going about our Father’s business.

Be blessed!

A Word for Today

Let the words of Apostle Paul encourage you today. Let them remind you and spur you on to your purpose here in these current latter days, as we eagerly look forward to the appearance of Christ.

2 Timothy 4:1-8 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:  Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.

 For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.  They will reject the truth and chase after myths.

 But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you.

As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is near.  I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.  And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing.

Have a blessed day!

2020 Bringing us that much Closer

This morning I read an article in the Scientific American magazine titled, “Natural Disasters-A Running List of Record Breaking Natural Disasters in 2020.” 2020 has been disastrous in so many ways that it really shouldn’t surprise any of us that many natural disasters were record breaking. This particular article was referring the the USA but that’s not to say other countries haven’t suffered the increase. In the last 24 hours alone, world wide there were 1 quake of magnitude 6.1, 4 quakes between 5.0 and 6.0, 19 quakes between 4.0 and 5.0, 77 quakes between 3.0 and 4.0, and 183 quakes between 2.0 and 3.0. There were also 481 quakes below magnitude 2.0 which people don’t normally feel. (https://www.volcanodiscovery.com/earthquakes.html) The world is groaning in birth pains just as the Bible told us it would.

And He said: “Take heed that you not be deceived. For many will come in My name saying, ‘I am He,’ and, ‘The time has drawn near.’ Therefore do not go after them. But when you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately.” The He said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be great earthquakes in various places and famines and pestilences; and there will be fearful sights and great signs from heaven. “Luke 21:8-11

Much of this sounds quite familiar doesn’t it? The earth as we know it, is ramping up for our soon coming King, Jesus Christ. We don’t need to be afraid, we need to keep our hearts and lives under His shadow through prayer and abiding in Christ. Jesus warned us, “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighted down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life and that Day come on you unexpectedly. For it will come as a snare on all those who dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:34-36

So today and each day leading up to His appearance, pray always. Stay close to the Savior. Do whatever it is He has put on your heart to do for Him and do it with joy each day.

If you have not asked Jesus Christ into your life, it is not too late to do so. You will not want to be left behind when He soon appears to take His church back to Heaven with Him. If’ you’d like to pray the prayer of salvation please do so along with me..

Father God: I come to you today knowing that I am a sinner. I have lived my life apart from fellowship with You. I want to become Your child today. I am asking you to forgive me of my sins and I know that this can only be done through the precious shed blood of Your Son Jesus Christ. I ask today that Jesus Christ would come into my life and cleanse me. I ask that He would create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me. I no longer want to live a life outside of Your will for me. From this day on, please guide me and lead me. I desperately need You. Thank you for welcoming me into Your family. In Jesus name, Amen

If you prayed that prayer please get yourself a Bible. The Bible is God’s love letter to us. His Word is invaluable in our lives and will teach us and guide us in how to live a life that is pleasing to Him. Also try and find yourself a Christian Bible teaching church. You will need fellowship with other Christian believers. We are not designed to walk alone. If you would like any recommendations on good Bible teachers that are online please let me know and I will be happy to direct you to teachers that teach the truth. There are many sheep in wolves clothing that you will want to avoid. Welcome to the family of God!

Blessings!

Stay Ready

“Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’

Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘No, lest there should not be enough for us and you: but go rather to those who sell and buy for yourselves.’ And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut. Afterward the other virgins came also saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly I say to you, I do not know you.’

Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming. ” Matthew 25:1-13

Have you retained oil in your lamp? (Are you walking and living with the Holy Spirit guiding you?)

Are you watching for our Bridegroom? (Are you watching with anticipation for Jesus Christ to appear and take us, His church, back with Him to Heaven?)

Will you be ready when He soon appears? (Are you living a life dedicated to Christ and keeping your heart free from the encumbrances of the world?)

The door was SHUT to those who weren’t ready. There were no exceptions or excuses accepted by the Bridegroom.

It is so important that we stay close to the Lover of our soul. Just remember that this world is not our home and if we get too invested here we will not be looking for our coming Savior. Stay awake and stay alert. Stay ready to meet Him in the clouds!

Blessings!

The Days in which we live


“And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy. Your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days. And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance. As the LORD has said, among the remnant whom the LORD calls.” Joel 2:28-32

Joel referred to the days that we find ourselves in. It is amazing how many people all over the world are currently having dreams and visions about Jesus Christ. In countries where the gospel is forbidden, Jesus is revealing Himself to men and women. It is His desire that no one should perish without knowing Him. He is reaching out to people in amazing and wondrous ways. In our own countries where the gospel has been freely preached to date, Jesus is giving dreams and visions to His people, preparing them for His soon return. Praise God!

Though we see a dark cloud looming on our horizon, God is faithful to His word. Every prophetic word He has included in the Bible will come to pass. We can count on His word. He is faithful and never lies. Make sure you guard your heart. Keep oil in your lamp and stay alert. Our Bridegroom is coming back soon!

Blessings!

Time is too short to be wasting it!

Anyone with an inch of spiritual discernment can see we are living in the last days, as the Bible described them. We are so close to the time we will see Jesus Christ appear in the clouds to gather His bride. This is both exciting and also a little scary. Exciting because we know those of us ready and waiting for His appearance will be caught up with Him and will forever be with our beautiful Savior and King. Scary because we don’t want to be ashamed when we see His beautiful face!

Why would we possibly be ashamed? Well if we have spent our life living solely for ourselves and not served Him well that would be one reason. Jesus told us we are to take up our cross daily and follow Him. That means live a life of intimacy with Him and service. If you are spending more hours a day online watching mindless information pass before you or spending more hours a day watching your tv than you are spending time in prayer and service you will likely have good reason to be ashamed at His appearance. The bride is to be awake and waiting with oil in her lamp and ready to go at that time the Lord calls us to be with Him. She is not to be busy doing things that do not further the gospel or help others by being the hands and feet of Christ.

I fear many who consider themselves to be part of the “church” will be sleeping and not even aware that the Bridegroom has arrived when He comes. Those that are not aware will be left to endure a horrible time here on earth before they will see the Bridegroom again. Christ, through Apostle John, was speaking to believers when he said the following, “Go back to what you heard and believed at first; hold to it firmly. Repent and turn to me again. If you don’t wake up, I will come to you suddenly, as unexpected as a thief.” Revelation 3:3 And again he was speaking to believers when he said, “Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world.” Revelation 3:10 Notice there was a requirement to repent, turn to Christ, obey His commands and persevere. Many in the church, worldwide are currently sleeping and repentance is not even close to their thoughts. They are keeping busy with things in this world. Things that will soon vanish and no longer matter. It is so important we continually live a life of repentance and obedience, while we excitedly await His appearance. Don’t allow anything to keep you from keeping your life right before Him. Luke also warns us, “Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware,  like a trap. For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth.  Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:34-36

We should not take these warnings lightly. There would be no need to warn the Christians if all were guaranteed the rapture, despite how they were living at the time of His appearance. So let me wrap up with this verse from Ephesians 5:15-17 So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise.  Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.  Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.

Let each of us do just that. Let us not live our lives as if we can do whatever we want and expect to still be ready for our Bridegroom when He arrives.

Heavenly Father: Please forgive us for our sins and transgressions. Help us to live a life that is pleasing in your sight. Help us, through the power of the Holy Spirit, be ready at all times for the appearance of Your Son. Please count us worth to escape the wrath to come and keep our hearts tender before You always. Guide us and lead us to the service You want us to do and give us a love for the lost so that we may continually pray for and share the gospel to those who desperately need to hear it.

We love You and thank You for loving us first. In Jesus name,

Amen

Keep Your Eyes on the Prize

Over the last few weeks I have had to battle not getting sucked into the discouragement of the world with all that is happening. I have had days of joy but also days where I have allowed the heaviness of the coming storm to get me down and have not handled it as well as I should have. The Lord reminded me today that HE is coming back soon for His bride! Our blessed hope, our beautiful Savior and King is coming back soon for us! This is to be our focus as we navigate our way through the coming days. There is nothing this world can do that can detract from the amazing truth that our Redeemer, the One who bought us our salvation on the cross, the One who has given us the Comforter to help and guide us, the One who promised to return for His bride, is coming back soon!

We MUST live every day with this in mind. Our focus must not be on the rising tide of evil. We can speak against it and pray for those involved but we can’t park on thoughts of evil and destruction. It is a tool of the devil to try and keep us so earthly focused we forget to be excitedly awaiting the beautiful appearance of our glorious bridegroom! When we focus on the coming storm, it may cause us to fill our time doing things that will tear us down. Discouragement, fear and anxiety can lead to overeating, self medicating or watching useless tv programs as a distraction. Most of us have fallen prey to these things from time to time. Our time is short here. Jesus Christ is coming back soon. We must use our time wisely.

Ephesians 5:15-17 So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.  Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.

We have all lived like fools from time to time but it’s time to put away foolishness and repent. We must keep our heart in a constant state of repentance and tender towards God and His word for us. 1 John 1:9 But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.

This world is not our home. Heaven is our home. As we see the world unravel more and more each day, that should be a reminder to us not to become to attached to anything here. Hebrews 13:14 For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come.

I want to finish up today with the words of Apostle Paul to Titus. They are so relevant for a time such as this. Titus 2:11-14 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,  teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age,  looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,  who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.

If you don’t know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you cannot look forward to the blessed hope God promises us. If you want to be assured of your eternity destination being Heaven please pray with me here..

Father God: Please forgive me. I am a sinner that is not worthy of Your love yet You sent Your only Son, Jesus Christ to die for me, despite that fact. I repent of my sins. I am truly sorry for the things I have done that have separated myself from You. Please wash me clean right now through the blood of Your Son Jesus Christ. I want to follow Him for the rest of my life and know that I will one day spend eternity with Him in Heaven. I ask for Your Holy Spirit to fill me and guide me from this time onward and I ask that He will help me to understand Your words in the Bible so that I may grow in my new found faith in You.

Thank you Father for providing Your Son as a way for me to find myself in right relationship with You.

In the name of Jesus Christ,

Amen.

Blessings!

There is One we can trust

One of the most wonderful things we have, as followers of Christ, is the knowledge that the Lord will never leave us or forsake us. No matter our circumstances, He is faithful to His flock. This is one thing we can stand on in a world where so much is being shaken. Friends may disappoint us, politicians may deceive us, family may abandon us but Jesus Christ will never leave us or forsake us! Never.

Because of this fact, we need not fear the future. As God is shaking things up preparing for Christ’s return, we are going to see many of the comforts in life we have always taken for granted removed. The plan for a one world government is already underway. With that plan will come changes to our freedoms and liberties. We have already seen our ability to attend churches diminish in many cases due to the so called pandemic. This is just the beginning of the changes that are planned for this world. That being said, do we need to run in fear? NO.

In a free society we should be able to call out and challenge our government for diminishing our freedoms and I think it is important to do so by our votes and with our voices. However, ultimately this old world as we know it is eventually going to get darker. God’s Word says so.

2 Timothy 3:1-9 You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times.  For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred.  They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good.  They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God.  They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. Stay away from people like that!

 They are the kind who work their way into people’s homes and win the confidence of vulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires.  (Such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth.)  These teachers oppose the truth just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses. They have depraved minds and a counterfeit faith.  But they won’t get away with this for long. Someday everyone will recognize what fools they are, just as with Jannes and Jambres.

It is not a surprise to God, nor to those who study their Bibles. God knew and continues to know exactly what will take place and He also planned for us to be born in such a time as this!

So though the future looks grim in some ways, it is also exciting to be alive knowing at any time the trumpet could sound and Jesus Christ could take us up to be with Him!

While we wait there is still work to be done. We must spend time studying God’s Word for direction. We must pray for the unsaved. We must pray for our government officials. We must be the hands and feet of Christ in whatever way He leads us to help and serve others. We must encourage one another with our blessed hope! We must trust that God will continue to guide us through whatever the future holds! Let’s listen to the rest of Paul’s words to Timothy.

2 Timothy 3:10-17 But you, Timothy, certainly know what I teach, and how I live, and what my purpose in life is. You know my faith, my patience, my love, and my endurance.  You know how much persecution and suffering I have endured. You know all about how I was persecuted in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra—but the Lord rescued me from all of it.  Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.  But evil people and impostors will flourish. They will deceive others and will themselves be deceived.

 But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you.  You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.  God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.

So as we learn to navigate through the coming days, rest assured Christ will be with us every step of the way. He will not leave us as orphans. Our good Shepherd loves His sheep!

Romans 8:35-39 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?  (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”)  No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.  No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Blessings!

Can you feel the storm brewing?

Are you sensing the coming economic and spiritual storm? Is God strongly prompting you to get things right with Him? So many of our friends and fellow believers are being nudged to prepare for some dark days ahead. The pandemic has caused incredible financial difficulties in most countries. The fact that lockdowns and restrictions to businesses are continuing indefinitely do not bode well for any future economic turnaround. Churches have been closed and many remain closed. The ones that are open have multiple restrictions enforced. Rioters and looters, worldwide, show no sign of surrendering their rebellion. Many, myself included, believe we are heading into a new situation in North America. One that includes chaos, spiritual darkness and financial difficulties. One that many followers of Christ in other countries around the world are all too familiar with.

Though the future doesn’t look rosy and bright in all facets, it is no cause to fear or stress. Our GOD is still on the throne! He has and will always take care of His own! Psalm 91 is a powerful word He has given us to stand on, despite whatever is going on around us!

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
    will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
 This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
    he is my God, and I trust him.
 For he will rescue you from every trap
    and protect you from deadly disease.
 He will cover you with his feathers.
    He will shelter you with his wings.
    His faithful promises are your armor and protection.

 Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,
    nor the arrow that flies in the day.
 Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,
    nor the disaster that strikes at midday.
 Though a thousand fall at your side,
    though ten thousand are dying around you,
    these evils will not touch you.
 Just open your eyes,
    and see how the wicked are punished.

 If you make the Lord your refuge,
    if you make the Most High your shelter,
 no evil will conquer you;
    no plague will come near your home.
 For he will order his angels
    to protect you wherever you go.

 They will hold you up with their hands
    so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.
 You will trample upon lions and cobras;
    you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!

 The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me.
    I will protect those who trust in my name.
 When they call on me, I will answer;
    I will be with them in trouble.
    I will rescue and honor them.
 I will reward them with a long life
    and give them my salvation.”

We can’t count on a lot of certainties when it comes to this world we live in but we can ALWAYS count on the one who holds it in His hand! If we stay close to Him, He will guide us through whatever is to come. His Spirit will prompt us to do that which He wants us to do to prepare. Myself and many others have felt nudged to simplify our lives. To try and get out of debts that have the ability to strangle us financially. To purchase those things we may need should the economy take a bad turn, things that will help sustain our families and others God may put in our path. To gather and pray with other believers to intercede for the lost. To support our brothers and sisters in Christ that have been displaced by church closures and most of all to stay close to Christ as the day of His appearance draws close!

Though things can look dismal, we are truly living in exciting times! We may well be the generation that sees the appearance of Jesus when He calls His church home to be with Him forever! Stay close to Him, study the Word of God, share the gospel and let your light shine in this world of darkness!

We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves.  Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.  SO ENCOURAGE EACH OTHER WITH THESE WORDS. (1 Thessalonians 4:15-18)

Blessings!

No Time Like the Present

There is such tension in the world today. We are seeing various forms of social media censoring things that just a few years ago would never have been censored. Main stream media are not reporting the news as it is actually happening but rather in the slant of what suits their current agenda. We see a decline in religious freedoms taking place. People in many places are still not allowed to attend church. If they can attend, they can’t sing due to the mask restrictions. More Christians, worldwide, are dying for their faith than ever before. Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you. (John 15:20) Things are becoming increasingly uncomfortable and there is no sign things will get better.

Having said all this, does that mean we should throw up our hands and crawl into our basements and retire? NO!! Absolutely not! God has called us to occupy until Jesus appears for His church. We are not to stay silent. We are to share the gospel, speak out against evil, defend the orphans and the widows and live each day as if it is our last! Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them. (Ephesians 5:11) Those that are afraid to engage in our culture by sharing the truth need to grow a backbone. The days of quietly letting others speak up with the gospel are over. It is the responsibility of each and everyone of us. Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety. (Proverbs 29:25)

Our time here is short. We must use it wisely to further the Kingdom and help others escape the coming wrath. A wrath that we wouldn’t wish on our worst enemy! Too many Christians are sitting back and waiting for things to return to normal before they go about the Father’s business. Things will likely never return to the normal we once knew.

If you are struggling with fear of sharing the gospel, ask God for courage. Ask Him for wisdom in knowing how and when to share. Don’t waste another day simply living for yourself and your comfort! Time is short. Live so as not to be ashamed when He appears to take us home!

While We Wait for our Bridegroom

It is a beautiful thing that we can come boldly to the throne of God with our prayers and that we can have absolute trust that He hears us. This would be impossible if it weren’t for the blood of Christ being shed for our sins! None of us are good enough on our own to stand clean before the throne of God. But we can praise God for the fact that Jesus Christ made Himself the ultimate sacrifice for each and every one of us. He became the sacrificial lamb for you and for me. Our guilt and shame have been sprinkled with the blood of the Lamb and therefore we can stand clean before Him when we pray.

It is so important we remember that when we come before God in prayer. We can ask His forgiveness and know because of Christ’s shed blood we will be forgiven. Too often the accuser of the brethren, (Satan) tries to distract us with guilt and shame when we begin to pray. We must ignore his voice and believe fully in the power of the shed blood of Christ and it’s ability to make us and continue to make us the righteousness of God!

If we listen to the voice of the accuser we are much more likely to give up praying and grow weak in our faith. This is one of his tactics and we must be wise and fully rely on the Word of God to counter his schemes. Our prayer life is our life line not only for us but for those God has called us to intercede for!

As we navigate ourselves through the coming days it is critical to keep our prayer lives alive and well! Family members, leaders, friends, the unsaved and fellow believers are all in need of our prayers. We have been told to hold fast to the promises of God and support and motivate one another as we see time drawing closer to the return of Christ for His church. We can only do this if we are walking closely with the Lord Himself and this is impossible if we don’t keep in close touch with Him.

If there was ever a time to stay in close communion with Christ it is now! Don’t let anything keep you from that intimacy. He truly is coming back for His bride sooner than we think! Let us all be ready when that trump sounds! Start each day communing with the lover of your soul!

And so, dear brothers and sisters we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus.  By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place.  And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house,  let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water. Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.  Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.  And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near. (Hebrews 10:19-25)

Labor Has Begun

The days we are currently living in so accurately express the birth pains stage of prophecy. Every day we see religious freedoms become less and less available. Natural disasters have greatly increased. Lawlessness abounds. There is increasing turmoil building in the Middle East. False teachers and doctrines can be found anywhere you look. Sin is rampant. Famines and earthquakes are on the increase.

Matthew 24:3-8 Later, Jesus sat on the Mount of Olives. His disciples came to him privately and said, “Tell us, when will all this happen? What sign will signal your return and the end of the world?” Jesus told them, “Don’t let anyone mislead you,  for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many.  And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately.  Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world.  But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come.

Though the times are going to get increasingly difficult, we have to praise God for the fact we are living in days where we get to witness the scriptures be fulfilled in living colour before our very eyes! We may well be very close to the appearance of Christ!

Let’s not waste any more time on frivolous things. It’s time to pray for the lost in our families and the world! We need to pray for our leaders and the darkness that surrounds so many worldwide governments! We need to pray for the body of Christ as never before!

Why not dedicate a set time every day to get alone before God and repent and intercede for all of the above? Reach out to others who also discern the times and join together in prayer in person or if distance is an issue, via a social media platform such as face time.

Let’s do our part to prepare others for the beautiful appearance of our Lord and Savior so that none of us will need to be ashamed at his appearance but rather we will be excited at just the thought!

1 Thessalonians 4:16,17 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.

God’s Got This

The past few months have drastically changed our world. Our lives have become much more limited in regards to what we can do outside our own homes and also how we can do things. Many of our taken for granted freedoms have gone.

Church gatherings have had to become much more creative in order to continue to be able to meet. Families have had to postpone so many events due to limited numbers being able to gather. Life as we knew it no longer exists.

All that being said, do we need to wring our hands in worry? No. None of this is taking God by surprise. We are living in exciting days where prophecy is being lived out before our actual eyes. God’s got things under control. The characters are all lining up to play their parts in what is to come.

Christians, we have more reason than ever to not be afraid. If we are watching, we can surely see things lining up for our beautiful Savior and King’s appearance. This is the time to get serious about sharing the gospel with those who haven’t heard. This is the time to encourage our brothers and sisters in Christ. This is the time to spend time on our knees asking the Lord what it is He wants us to do today, and every day until He appears. This is not the time to get distracted by things that keep us from abiding in Christ. There is no time to waste.

Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.  And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.~ Hebrews 10:24,25

So why not start your day today in prayer? Ask God what it is you can do for Him today? Who should you speak to? What can you do for a brother or sister in Christ? Seek Him and His will for you today.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope.  For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died.

 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves.  Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.  So encourage each other with these words. ~ 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

FEAR: The Cat that Likes to Roar

We are living in the strangest of times right now. The news is inundated with stories filled with reasons why we should be worried, afraid and distrusting world leaders and heads. There are so many conflicting stories about how best to tackle this virus and most of them are generated by immense fear.

As followers of Christ we NEED NOT BE AFRAID! If we have diligently studied the Word of God we know how this ole world ends and we win! If we allow fear to rule our lives we will be spiritually and emotionally crippled! 1 Timothy 1:7 says For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. If are decisions are being driven by fear than we are NOT following the voice of God but of the deceiver.

So how do we live without being driven by fear? We get back into the Word of God. All through the Old Testament and the New Testament there are so many examples of God leading His people through dark and very dark times. Today, we have the Helper (the Holy Spirit) to guide us and direct us as we seek His Word daily through prayer and reading the Bible. Ask God for boldness. Ask Him to drive out fear and replace it with trust in His power, His love and self discipline. He already knows if you are being driven by fear so He won’t be shocked and yet He will hear your plea and answer. That’s who He is!

I’m always a little taken back when I read Revelation 21:8 “But cowards, unbelievers, the corrupt, murderers, the immoral, those who practice witchcraft, idol worshipers, and all liars—their fate is in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” Cowards are listed right there with the adulterers, murderers etc. That’s eye opening to say the least. Therefore, it is very important that we not be lead by fear or driven by fear. It will lead us into the wrong decision and response every time.

When fear appears in your life like a mighty lion and roars it’s lies at you you must respond with the Word of God. Take the Word and wield it like the mighty sword it is. Counter each lie and fearful thought with the truth of God’s Word. If you don’t know where to start do a search of how many times we, as people of God, are told, “fear not or do not be afraid.” It is imperative we receive that in our hearts! With the 365 times we are told not to fear we should begin to realize how serious it is to obey.

So today, when the cat (deceiver) comes up and begins to ROAR fear in your ear, respond in a way the LION of the tribe of Judah would have you respond. Wield the truth from the Word of God back at him. His roar is nothing but a small meow compared to the ROAR of the Word of God! It is the only way to counter his roar. Ignoring it or giving in to it will only bring defeat. Use the mighty weapon of the Word God has given us as many times as needed. Resist him and he will flee.

Have a blessed day!

Heart & Obedience aka Be like Nehemiah!

Leadership Lessons from Nehemiah | Coram Deo ~

I have been rereading the book of Nehemiah and it is such a wonderful book for so many reasons. One of my biggest take aways from it is that we should all have a heart for the people around us. It should grieve us to know that there are so many people lacking faith in Christ and direction when we have the answer.

Nehemiah 1 In late autumn, in the month of Kislev, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes’ reign, I was at the fortress of Susa. Hanani, one of my brothers, came to visit me with some other men who had just arrived from Judah. I asked them about the Jews who had returned there from captivity and about how things were going in Jerusalem.

 They said to me, “Things are not going well for those who returned to the province of Judah. They are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem has been torn down, and the gates have been destroyed by fire.”

 When I heard this, I sat down and wept. In fact, for days I mourned, fasted, and prayed to the God of heaven.  Then I said,

“O Lord, God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps his covenant of unfailing love with those who love him and obey his commands,  listen to my prayer! Look down and see me praying night and day for your people Israel. I confess that we have sinned against you. Yes, even my own family and I have sinned!  We have sinned terribly by not obeying the commands, decrees, and regulations that you gave us through your servant Moses.

“Please remember what you told your servant Moses: ‘If you are unfaithful to me, I will scatter you among the nations.  But if you return to me and obey my commands and live by them, then even if you are exiled to the ends of the earth, I will bring you back to the place I have chosen for my name to be honored.’

 “The people you rescued by your great power and strong hand are your servants.  O Lord, please hear my prayer! Listen to the prayers of those of us who delight in honoring you. Please grant me success today by making the king favorable to me. Put it into his heart to be kind to me.”

In those days I was the king’s cup-bearer.

Nehemiah was obedient to the call on his life. He listened to God and obeyed, despite the fact he had to be brave in asking for permission. His heart ached when he saw how his people were suffering and needed direction and when he heard about the state of the wall.

I suggest you read or reread the book of Nehemiah this week. It is a book that illustrates how one person’s obedience and faithfulness to God can make a huge difference in the lives of many. Your obedience or disobedience will always have an impact on those around you.

My prayer today is that we too will be like Nehemiah. We will obey the calling God has put on our lives and follow through, despite how difficult it may be, despite opposition or grumblings. The spiritual health of others may be dependent on it! Stay the course!

Nehemiah 6 Sanballat, Tobiah, Geshem the Arab, and the rest of our enemies found out that I had finished rebuilding the wall and that no gaps remained—though we had not yet set up the doors in the gates.  So Sanballat and Geshem sent a message asking me to meet them at one of the villages in the plain of Ono.

But I realized they were plotting to harm me,  so I replied by sending this message to them: “I am engaged in a great work, so I can’t come. Why should I stop working to come and meet with you?”

 Four times they sent the same message, and each time I gave the same reply.  The fifth time, Sanballat’s servant came with an open letter in his hand,  and this is what it said:

“There is a rumor among the surrounding nations, and Geshem tells me it is true, that you and the Jews are planning to rebel and that is why you are building the wall. According to his reports, you plan to be their king.  He also reports that you have appointed prophets in Jerusalem to proclaim about you, ‘Look! There is a king in Judah!’

“You can be very sure that this report will get back to the king, so I suggest that you come and talk it over with me.”

 I replied, “There is no truth in any part of your story. You are making up the whole thing.”

 They were just trying to intimidate us, imagining that they could discourage us and stop the work. So I continued the work with even greater determination.

 Later I went to visit Shemaiah son of Delaiah and grandson of Mehetabel, who was confined to his home. He said, “Let us meet together inside the Temple of God and bolt the doors shut. Your enemies are coming to kill you tonight.”

 But I replied, “Should someone in my position run from danger? Should someone in my position enter the Temple to save his life? No, I won’t do it!”  I realized that God had not spoken to him, but that he had uttered this prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. They were hoping to intimidate me and make me sin. Then they would be able to accuse and discredit me.

So on October  the wall was finished—just fifty-two days after we had begun.  When our enemies and the surrounding nations heard about it, they were frightened and humiliated. They realized this work had been done with the help of our God.

 During those fifty-two days, many letters went back and forth between Tobiah and the nobles of Judah.  For many in Judah had sworn allegiance to him because his father-in-law was Shecaniah son of Arah, and his son Jehohanan was married to the daughter of Meshullam son of Berekiah.  They kept telling me about Tobiah’s good deeds, and then they told him everything I said. And Tobiah kept sending threatening letters to intimidate me.

Blessings!

Don’t Waste this Time

Pin on GO.

Do you believe Jesus Christ is going to appear soon to take up His church? Are you sensing that time for the body of Christ is short here? I do. I have never been more convinced that time is short. I really believe we must use every opportunity the LORD gives us to share the gospel with those that need to hear it, including those who need salvation and those who once knew Christ but are currently living in rebellion.

For those of us who can’t work right now, why not pray and ask God to show you ways you can be used to share the message so desperately needed by this world? Jesus Christ came to save sinners! He is not willing that anyone should perish and be lost for eternity!

2 Peter 3:3-10 Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. They will say, “What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the world was first created.”

 They deliberately forget that God made the heavens long ago by the word of his command, and he brought the earth out from the water and surrounded it with water.  Then he used the water to destroy the ancient world with a mighty flood.  And by the same word, the present heavens and earth have been stored up for fire. They are being kept for the day of judgment, when ungodly people will be destroyed.

 But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day.  The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.  But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief.

What will it matter if you helped people with material things during the pandemic but neglected to share the gospel which would help them for all eternity? We are to be the hands and feet of Christ but we are also called to share the good news to those that need to hear it. We also have a responsibility to remind those who have fallen away from Christ that the time is short and His return is imminent. Whether it’s today or in 5 years, they need to be ready.

I have committed to praying for the unsaved during this time but I know that is not enough. We must share the gospel however the LORD allows us to. It may be through social media, a phone call, a letter or a conversation while social distancing in a store.

Let’s do our part to help people be spared from the evil days to come. The pandemic is bad but the book of Revelation tells us for those that are left behind things will be far worse or an enormous scale!

So brother or sister in Christ, pray and ask God how you can be used during this time. He is always looking for willing vessels. We don’t have to be perfect. We must have a heart for Him and be willing.

Have a blessed day!

Get Things Right

This current time of self isolating can really be a blessing in disguise. It is giving many people, around the world, an opportunity to have time to get their life in order spiritually. Many of us fill our lives with jobs, chores, friends, family and leave very little time to spend with our God in prayer.

God longs to have us spend time with Him. He has created us for fellowship. If you have found yourself out of fellowship with Him lately than why not take this opportunity to turn things around? Why waste another day spinning your own wheels? Cry out to Jesus Christ while He can still be found. No one knows how long they have on this earth and today is the day you have been given!

Joel 2:12, 13 That is why the Lord says,
    “Turn to me now, while there is time.
Give me your hearts.
    Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning.
 Don’t tear your clothing in your grief,
    but tear your hearts instead.”
Return to the Lord your God,
    for He is merciful and compassionate,
slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
    He is eager to relent and not punish.

Instead of filling your day with menial tasks, take some time today in your prayer closet and ask the Lord to forgive you for neglecting Him. Thank Him for every good gift He has given you, including your salvation! Spend time talking to the lover of your soul. Get things right between you. Don’t waste another day or opportunity to be in the presence of Christ!

Can Anything Good Come out of _______________?

Have you ever noticed yourself or others judging people by their background or station in life? Too often, we the body of Christ, fall prey to the same tendency the world does. We too can judge people by their ethnicity, political standing, financial status or where they’re from. In the book of James we are warned to guard ourselves from doing this very thing.

James 2:1-5 My dear brothers and sisters, how can you claim to have faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ if you favor some people over others?

For example, suppose someone comes into your meeting dressed in fancy clothes and expensive jewelry, and another comes in who is poor and dressed in dirty clothes. If you give special attention and a good seat to the rich person, but you say to the poor one, “You can stand over there, or else sit on the floor”—well, doesn’t this discrimination show that your judgments are guided by evil motives?

Listen to me, dear brothers and sisters. Hasn’t God chosen the poor in this world to be rich in faith? Aren’t they the ones who will inherit the Kingdom he promised to those who love him?

God knows our tendency to favor like minded people that appear to be thriving. He knows our weakness towards favoritism . It’s nothing new. In fact one of my favorite stories from the Bible demonstrates that very issue.

John 1:40-51 Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of these men who heard what John said and then followed Jesus. 41 Andrew went to find his brother, Simon, and told him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means “Christ”).

42 Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, “Your name is Simon, son of John—but you will be called Cephas” (which means “Peter”).

43 The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Come, follow me.” 44 Philip was from Bethsaida, Andrew and Peter’s hometown.

45 Philip went to look for Nathanael and told him, “We have found the very person Moses and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth.”

46 “Nazareth!” exclaimed Nathanael. “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”

“Come and see for yourself,” Philip replied.

47 As they approached, Jesus said, “Now here is a genuine son of Israel—a man of complete integrity.”

48 “How do you know about me?” Nathanael asked.

Jesus replied, “I could see you under the fig tree before Philip found you.”

49 Then Nathanael exclaimed, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God—the King of Israel!”

50 Jesus asked him, “Do you believe this just because I told you I had seen you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this.” 51 Then he said, “I tell you the truth, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between heaven and earth.”

Nathanael sincerely questioned, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” The assumption being Nazareth was not a place of importance or significance enough to be the birth place of the long awaited Messiah! The Jews were waiting for their Messiah to come but were not expecting Him to be born into poor circumstances! I love the fact God had his Son born into lowly surroundings with no pomp or circumstance. It shows the heart of God to be tender and compassionate towards all those who would otherwise not feel worthy of being accepted into the body of Christ. Jesus Christ is not a Savior for the privileged alone. He is for everyone, regardless of their status in life! He is available to anyone that will cry out to Him, repent of their sins and follow Him!

So to answer Nathanael’s question YES. YES something good and wonderful did come out of Nazareth. Our beautiful King, Jesus Christ! And you must know that something good can come out of your city or town, regardless of its size or significance in the world! That something is you! A child of God, bought with the blood of Jesus Christ, filled with the Spirit of God and set apart for good works, wherever you live! Never allow any person or any voice to tell you that your status in life is a limitation to God using you right where you are. We are not to judge others and that includes ourselves. If we yield to Christ, He will use us regardless of our family background, financial status, ethnicity or political leanings. Yield yourself to Him today! Make a difference right where you are!

Blessings!

Purpose in Your Heart

3 Reasons Why David Was a Man After God's Own Heart - Guarding the ...

The direction of our day is going to be determined by the “purposing of our heart.” As followers of Christ, we are not to be lead by feelings alone. We our to be lead by the Holy Spirit who will not impose Himself on us. If we want to have a day where we will walk in victory and glorify God we must begin our day by purposing in our heart to do the will of God.

Our flesh does not desire to yield to the ways and things of God. It is always happy to reach out and grab those things that make us feel good for the moment. However, those same things are often the things that draw us away from abiding in Christ and our peace. If we want to walk in peace and true joy it is only achieved through walking in obedience to the will of God, regardless of our circumstances.

So if you want to have a day of true peace start your day by “purposing in your heart,” to walk in holiness being lead by the Spirit of God. Invite the Holy Spirit to lead you throughout the day. Seek the Father’s will in all you do. Talk with Jesus, thank Him for all He has done and ask Him to use you as His hands and feet while you live your day for Him!

Be like Daniel, a man with an excellent spirit! Daniel 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Are you Excited for His Appearing?

Will Jesus' second coming be in the clouds? I'm not so sure...

Did you know that one day Jesus is going to appear and those of us in Christ will be caught up to ever be with the LORD?

1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves.  Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.

This should be the “blessed hope,” of every follower of Christ.

Titus 2:11-14 This is our “blessed hope,” as the Bible calls it! For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,  teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.

Each morning we should prepare ourselves that today may be that very day! We need to live every day waiting on His glorious appearance! So whatever you do today, do it well, do it with excellence as you live your day honoring God. Regardless of your responsibilities, you can pray as you carry them out. Find time to read the Bible. Even a few verses that you can meditate upon throughout your day.

If you live every day waiting on His return it will keep your heart tender and sensitive to His voice and leading and that dear friends is exactly how Jesus Christ wants us to live!

Have a blessed day!

Things Are SHAKE, SHAKE SHAKING

Image result for God is shaking the world

We are living in some extraordinary times right now. It would seem everything around us that has been familiar and secure in the past, is no longer available to lean upon. The Corona virus has literally stopped many from being able to continue to worship so many of the idols of our culture such as sports, live entertainment, celebrities, activities and gatherings etc. Instead people are finding themselves at home self isolating from the rest of the world.

This is a wonderful time for the saints of God to use social media to share the truth of God’s WORD. We recognize what is happening all over the world. Things are being shaken. We were told things would be shaken. It is no surprise to those who study the Bible. Though it can be a terrifying time for those who fear death, for us that are followers of Christ we need not fear. We know where we are going when we pass from life to death and that that day will not come one day sooner than what God has destined for us.

We should be wise and heed the advice of those medical professionals and self isolate when possible. We should take care of our bodies and our families. This is submitting to authorities that are not asking us to do anything against God’s will. It’s the right thing to do. But we need not fear during these days. In fact for many, the situation has presented a wonderful opportunity to spend time in His Word and in prayer interceding for those who need our prayers at this time.

While you may be holed up in your apartment, house or residence you still have the opportunity to let your light shine to others. Call those that are alone and maybe lonely, pray for those who need it during this time, pray for the worldwide persecuted church, spend time in worship throughout the day, be an example to your children, grandchildren and others. Encourage those who may need it right now. In other words let your light shine!

We may be experiencing the same shaking as the rest of the world but we are not to let it shake our faith. In fact why not use this time to press in closer to the ONE who holds the universe in His hands?

Be well, be blessed and use your time wisely while the distractions are minimal! He will soon appear and the time you spend with Him now will keep your heart ready for His appearing!

See that you do not refuse Him who speaks. For if they did not escape who refused Him who spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape if we turn away from Him who speaks from heaven,  whose voice then shook the earth; but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.”  Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain.

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.  For our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:25-29

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Take the Time

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As followers of Jesus Christ, we are so privileged. We serve a living God that is available 24/7. He never shuts us out because He’s too busy, in fact, He longs for us to spend time with Him and rewards us when we do.  But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. (Matthew 6:6)  

In the busyness of your day today, take time to do just that. Get alone with Him. Acknowledge who He is. Thank Him for all He has done and continues to do in your life and in the lives of others. Ask Him to give you direction for the day.

This is the one way we can ensure we haven’t wasted the day.

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”;  whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. (James 4:13,14)

It’s Time to Share!

 

toogoodJust turn on your computer, tv or open a newspaper today and you will see natural disasters all over the world. There doesn’t appear to be anywhere safe from them. Not only are they increasing, but the strength of them appears to be increasing too.  We are experiencing the early birth pangs Jesus warned us about. As with real birth pangs they start off slowly and gradually increase in both frequency and strength. We can expect the same with natural disasters.

 

We have all seen the headlines with rumors of wars possibly including North Korea, Russia and not to mention all the countries that are currently battling.  The last year alone has brought us into a political environment that increases the chance of war.

Sin, well sin can be found everywhere we look, including in the mirror. The majority of the world has not found or outwardly rejected Christ as Lord and Saviour.  Without Him life is pretty dark and that is exactly what we are seeing everywhere we look.  The world is not a warm, welcoming place without Christ.

So with all this going on around us should we be discouraged? Should we be down trodden and depressed? NO!  A resounding NO!  Through Christ we have every good thing! We have more than we need! We have a truth that cannot be shaken! We have a friend in these times of trouble that is closer than a brother! We have a Savior and friend that will NEVER leave us or forsake us!  We have the good news that we can share with those who have yet to hear or have not listened up till now! More and more people are getting discouraged with this ole world of ours and are looking for something concrete to hold onto.  Well there is nothing more concrete than the love of Jesus Christ and His ability to save people from their sins and  sustain those  people through any situation or circumstance.

Instead of looking at the doom and gloom surrounding you today.  Ask God to give you a heart for the lost and broken. Ask Him to put people in your path today that you can love on tangibly  and share the gospel with. He will do it! He has called us to do this very thing.  Let others know why you don’t walk in fear but by faith.  Be encouraged that God has called you and brought you to a time such as this for that very purpose!

“And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.’”~Matthew 16:15

 

Maybe a little too comfy…

blankyboy

When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. ~ 1 Corinthians 13:11

When my children were little they all had some type of comfy blanket or toy. It was taken with us when we went anywhere overnight or when we traveled in order to ensure a peaceful trip for the rest of the family. They would sometimes rub it against their face when they were going to sleep or just drag it around with them when they were about the house. Fortunately they all outgrew them! 🙂

Us followers of Christ can sometimes be guilty of holding onto our comfort toys for far too long. Those things that bring temporary relief or pleasure but keep us from moving forward and actually living the mature Christian life. We all have ones that we wrestle with.  I know I’ve been sensing that God is not pleased with me when I waste time doing things that bring a little relief from this crazy world we live in when I could be doing something that can help change this crazy world we live in by changing the lives of those living in it!

There is a darkness encroaching that we all see. Christians are being persecuted worldwide at an alarming rate. Many are boldly dying for their faith rather than renounce the lover of their soul. Yet, in North America, Europe etc.  many of us are afraid to even share the gospel with our neighbor.  We don’t want to appear different or odd. Well we are different and odd. We are a peculiar people! We need to be bold in our love for Christ. He was bold for us when he went to the cross and suffered the dreadful death that He did.

The time for playing is over. We need to encourage one another to live our life (always guided by love and not our own agenda) boldly for Christ! We need to set aside anything that is causing us to be distracted or falsely comforted from avoiding the fact that many around us are going to not only miss out on a life of joy and peace but an eternity with Christ!

It’s time for us, the Church, to lay aside our comfort toys and be the Church Jesus called us to be!

So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers,  to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up  until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves,and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming.  Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.~ Ephesians 4:11-15

CULTURE is not our course!

JESUS CHRIST the same, yesterday, and today, and forever.~Hebrews 13:8

JESUS CHRIST the same, yesterday, and today, and forever.~Hebrews 13:8

If there is one thing a true follower of Christ can count on, it is that culture as a whole, will change and become increasingly bold and accepting towards sin as we draw closer to the return of Christ. it shouldn’t surprise us.  It shouldn’t scare us. It shouldn’t cause us to over react. It shouldn’t cause us to hate the sinner. Jesus told us that as the days draw closer to a close, sin will abound. Accept is as fact. It will happen and it will continue to happen until we see Him face to face!

2 Timothy 3:1-5 Tells us…But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

Though once ourselves bound by sin, we now as followers of Christ, have been given the Holy Spirit! Through the power of the Holy Spirit we are able to live a life of freedom! In order to walk in this freedom we must remain people of prayer and continue to study God’s Word, which will increase our faith!

We read in 1 Timothy chapter 4 verses 4-16,  that as the Lord’s return draws closer, some people will abandon their faith in Christ and be seduced by the increase in sin.

The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance. 10 That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe.11 Command and teach these things. 12 Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. 13 Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. 14 Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.15 Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. 16 Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

We must be knowledgeable of the Word of God and diligent in obeying it so that when our culture continues to grow more and more accepting of things that are clearly marked sin in God’s word we will not get entangled in that sin but will instead  intercede all the more for those who are trapped in it and by it! Our motivation must be love. Love for the lost, love for those trapped in the bondage of sin and love for those who have been freed from it through Christ! WE don’t change when culture changes. We are to remain steadfast to the Word of God. If you find yourself more accepting of sin than you need to get yourself into the Word of God (your Bible) and realize how God sees it. Just because everyone else is doing it  or approving of it does not mean it will ever be okay in God’s eyes.  This does not mean we should battle the increase of sin in our culture with fighting words against those whom we want to see freed! Words spewed out in anger and bitterness will never draw anyone away from their sin and to Christ.  Instead we are to share Christ as Lord and Savior. Without salvation and the Holy Spirit, all of us are bound by our sin! It is only through Christ that we are able to be free and keep that freedom. Quarreling words over sin will never accomplish what Jesus Christ alone can accomplish once He has inhabited the heart of a new believer!

It is after we confess Jesus Christ as Savior that we are enabled by the Holy Spirit to turn away from sin. While we are still dead in our sin it will remain a lifelong struggle. So fighting with a sinner trapped in sin is futile. What they need to hear is the gospel message of salvation. Too often we want people to clean up their lives before they come to Christ when what they really need is the power of the Holy Spirit to enable them to bring about real heart change!

We don’t serve culture, we serve Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, Our King of Kings and the true Holy One! He does not change. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. His opinions on sin don’t change. He will always detest sin. He willingly endured the horrific death on the cross to free us of it! He doesn’t take it lightly! It is Jesus Christ that the sinner needs! Whether they are busy hiding their sin or boldly flaunting their sin, Jesus Christ alone can free them of it. Just as He alone has freed us of our past sin and continues to intercede on our behalf before the Father. He alone can bring salvation and true freedom.

So as things grow darker in this world we live in, we are to remain true to the Word of God, which requires us to read it and know it. We are NOT to be influenced or transformed by what culture says is okay. We are to stay true to the course Christ has put us on. The course to take up our cross daily, and follow Him and as we do this we are to share the gospel with the messed up, broken and lost. Once they have given their heart to Christ, we are to encourage them in their faith through the Word of God and in prayer. That is our calling as followers of Jesus Christ.

So each of us needs to be prepared to willingly share the gospel with the lost where they are. Trying to get them to clean up first is futile and renders the cross unnecessary. God has provided a beautiful way of saving and growing up His church. Salvation through Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit to empower us over sin. We don’t need to improve on it. We just need to share it!

What’s bubbling to your surface?

Each one of us lives out our story of faith. Every day we are faced to deal with situations and people that cause us to react. Our reaction tells others a great deal about our character. God has called us, through Christ, to be salt and light in an otherwise dark world. Do our words and actions demonstrate the salt and light of the gospel or do they demonstrate a heart of self pity and complaining?

When we are driving down the road and someone cuts us off, our reaction is a direct result of what is inside us. If we have been thinking throughout the day of how difficult life is, how hard we have it or how unhappy we are, our reaction will not be too sweet! What comes to the surface during a crisis or a sudden upset is what we have been telling ourselves right up to that point. What we feed our minds bubbles up out of our mouths!

For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.~Proverbs 23:7

 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,  for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Do everything without grumbling or arguing,  so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky  as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.~Philippians 2:14-16

What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.~James 4:1-3

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him,  rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.~Colossians 2:6,7

As followers of Christ we too often react with criticism, negativity and self pity because that’s what we have been feeding ourselves in our thought life all day! What goes into our thoughts comes out of our mouth. If we want to react and respond as Christ would, we need to feed our mind and heart on His Word. We need to be in an attitude of praise and thanksgiving, even in the difficult times. Taking up our cross often involves difficulties and trying times.

When we find ourselves reacting negatively to people and things we need to readjust our heart! We need to spend time with our Savior and  get back into the Word of God. It is necessary. It is essential if we want to live as Christ has called us to live, loving Him and serving others, there’s no other option.

I am so thankful that when I screw up and get waylaid in selfishness, I can ask the lover of my soul to forgive me and get me back on track!  He longs for our fellowship and is willing to forgive us over and over again.  So if you have been complaining, griping or just responding with an ungrateful attitude to your circumstances perhaps it’s time you get on your knees before Him and ask for forgiveness. Ask Him to get you back on track with an attitude of praise and thanksgiving. Ask Him to illuminate the Word of God before you read your Bible and allow it to penetrate into your heart and mind. Allow the Word to conform you into the image of Jesus so that you too can be the salt and light this world of ours so desperately needs!

Life is but a Vapor

This past weekend we lost a dear friend. She had recently been battling cancer and lost her fight. In our minds and hearts we lost her way too soon. She was still young! We didn’t expect to lose her this soon! This morning I was reminded that there are no guarantees when it comes to our life span. We cannot possibly predict what the future may hold for any one of us.  I was hit in the face with this fact almost ten years ago when we lost our twenty year old son Daniel in a car accident. I was reminded of it again this weekend.

There is no certainty, no guarantees and no assurance that we will have another day, another week, another month etc. As much as we like to feel we have control over so much of our life, this is one area none of us can control completely. We can take care of ourselves and try and stay fit but even that does not guarantee longevity.  So what does this mean? Should we live our lives in fear or discouragement knowing just how frail life can be? Should we worry incessantly about what could happen? The answer to all three questions is a resounding NO!

We are to live each day as if it were our last, abiding in Christ and serving as we have been called. NO fear, NO terror, NO worry, just living out our lives with purpose each day as we walk close to the ONE who gives us purpose. Each day is a gift God gives us to walk close to Him and share the gospel with a dying world. As long as we are staying close to Him through our prayer life and increasing our faith through the reading of the Word, we will hear Him speaking to our hearts and leading us. That is how we are to live each day. Not worrying about tomorrow or what it may bring. Simply living each day with His purposes in our heart! When we need wisdom to do so we simply ask for it. He promises to give it to us liberally! When we stumble, we need to repent and get right back on track. Moving forward in the course He has set before us.

We run into the most trouble when we forget that we who follow Christ, have been called for a purpose. We have been bought with a high price, the price of His shed blood. We have not been called to ignore God’s purposes and live out our own plans. When we remember to whom we owe our life and redemption we live with His purpose in mind. We lose the need to control our future. James says it beautifully. James 4:13-15 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell and make a profit;” whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.”

None of us knows what the future holds. We do know that we have been given this day! This day to walk close to the ONE who saved us and called us. Let’s remember to seek His face today and fulfill the purposes He has for us! Not worrying about tomorrow, next week, or any time in the future!

Lord, forgive us for our arrogance in thinking we have all the time in the world to fulfill Your purposes. Remind us each day that we need to live close to You, seeking Your face and purposes for our life. Knowing that life is but a vapor! We may not have tomorrow but we have today!   We ask this in the name of Jesus, Amen.

Really? Peace & Joy during a storm?

There is only one way, we who are followers of Christ, can possibly have peace when we go through a storm in life. It is by believing in the depths of our being the truth that God is faithful to us and will NEVER allow us to go through more than we can bear. It is knowing with absolute certainty that NOTHING or NO ONE is able to cause us to lose our peace and joy if we put our trust in the ONE who is absolutely trustworthy. The reason we too often lose our peace when the storms come is simply because we have stopped believing that everything that happens to us has been allowed by the ONE who knows us best!  He who knew us while we were being formed in our mother’s wombs, knows what can be used in the transformation of our character from selfish, self absorbed individuals to sold out, Spirit lead followers of Christ.

The great preacher, Charles H. Spurgeon once wrote, “God gets his best soldiers out of the highlands of affliction.” There is so much truth in this quote. Why does it often take afflictions, trials, storms to grow us up? Perhaps it is because when things are going smoothly we tend to forget the goodness of our God. We tend to fall back into the pattern of thinking somehow we have control over all our circumstances. We forget just how much we need to rely on and depend on the lover of our soul!  When difficulties enter our lives it usually doesn’t take us too long before we are back to crying out to God for His help.

God wants us to go through life knowing, really knowing and believing that ALL things work together to them who love God and them who are called according to His purpose. When we finally really get it, really believe it, than we are able to trust Him regardless of the battle, regardless of the size of our opponent and regardless of the severity of the difficulty. This is how we are called to live as followers of Christ. Not on a daily emotional roller coaster that is fueled by our emotions and insecurities. We are to live by the truth of His Word which tells us nothing can separate us from Christ or His love for us. NOTHING!  If we allow them, afflictions will teach us just how reliable HE really is. If we speak the truth of His word to our situation and believe it in the depths of our being, than we are able to maintain our joy and peace no matter how difficult or severe the trial is. The truth of this has been demonstrated through centuries by all those martyrs who have willingly given their lives rather than deny Christ. They believed the truth of His Word and they lived it! Their lives and even their deaths became a witness for all those around them, that God will give the grace and willingness to endure whatever may come to those who love Him.

If our love is conditional based solely on His gifts and blessings to us it is not really love at all. If we truly love Him and believe He is who He says He is and that He loves us enough to not allow us to endure more than we can bear, we will be able to go through ANY circumstance with joy and peace. 

 Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”~Deuteronomy 31:6

I’m not for one second suggesting this may be easy. Yet it is possible. Not by mind over matter or wishful thinking but soley by knowing the truth of who HE is and how very much HE loves us. By knowing Christ’s promises are as good today as they were when He walked the earth.  And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.~Romans 8:28  

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,  through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.  And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance;  and perseverance, character; and character, hope.  Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.~Romans 5:1-5 

Our confidence in these truths  grow as we spend time with Him daily in prayer and as we spend time reading our Bibles, the Word of God.

 The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth.~Psalm 145:18  

 Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving.~Colossians 4:2

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,  that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.~2 Timothy 3:16,17

 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”~Romans 10:17

None of us know when trials will come. If we stay close to our Savior and grow in our faith, knowing and trusting Him completely, when they come we will not be swept away. We will be able to stand and endure with peace and with true joy (not surface happiness) but true joy, knowing whatever He allows to touch us is going to work out for long term good!  He will continue to grow Christ like character in us as we go through the very things we wish to avoid the most.

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.~James 1:2-4

Ultimately, Christ is preparing us to one day meet Him face to face and hear the words, “Well done my good and faithful servant.” My prayer is that we will cultivate a deeper, more sincere walk with our Savior and Lord and that we will hide the Word of God in our hearts so that when the storms of life come crashing in, we will NOT be troubled or dismayed. We will confidently rest in knowing even in this, we can joyfully trust Him!  He is still in control!

Oh to have a heart like Stephen!

Reading Acts 6 & 7 just blesses me so much! I love Stephen’s passion for Christ and his desire to share the gospel despite the circumstances! A man of love and faith, fully passionate about our beautiful Jesus! His love was even evident on his face!  All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel. (Acts 6:15) Stephen was filled with the Spirit of God and sold out and radical for His Savior. There was no other Way for him to live. His allegiance was to Jesus!

There is so much we can glean from Stephen’s final day. When the elders and teachers of the law had him falsely accused of blasphemy against the law he didn’t fight back in the flesh but he used a more powerful weapon, he preached the Word of God to them! He didn’t try and justify his actions. He didn’t cry out to God for deliverance, He preached the Word, starting with the Old Testament and leading up to the ONE to whom he loved and followed, Jesus and what a sermon he preached! He knew the Word and he used it. He didn’t rely on his earthly wisdom, but rather the Word.

In chapter 7 we see him preach how God moved through the generations from Abraham up to the coming of His Son and how the “learned leaders” often refused and rejected God’s message and persecuted those who brought it, even to the point of betraying and murdering the Righteous One.

The Spirit of God moved mightily through Stephen as he preached with boldness! He didn’t back down or relent knowing full well that it may result in his death. Stephen’s focus was on sharing the gospel of Christ and Christ alone!

54 When the members of the Sanhedrin heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. 55 But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.56 “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”57 At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, 58 dragged him out of the city and began to stone him.Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul.59 While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” 60 Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep. (Acts 7:54-60)

I can’t help but notice two things, Stephen did not want the Lord to hold their sin against them and his persecution was witnessed by Saul, whom later had his name changed to Paul and who happened to become one of the greatest preachers of the gospel ever!  Stephen’s death was NOT in vain!  We are living in times where are brothers and sisters around the world are often called to share the gospel amid hostile persecution! The way things are going in North America, it soon may be upon us too.

Lord give us a heart to share the Word of God boldly and in the power of Your Holy Spirit. Let us not be cowardly, or cling to things that really don’t matter. Give us a holy boldness to speak the truth when called up to do so! There is no ONE more worthy of our allegiance, than you Jesus!  Let Your Spirit move upon each of us that call you Savior and Lord to be bold and obedient, regardless of the circumstances we may face!

In the beautiful name of Jesus, Amen.