March 15, 2020
While reading Colossians 3:1-8 I came across two terms that caught my attention. The first was “faith”. Faith is the absolute trust and confidence in Jesus Christ’s power, wisdom and goodness. I was drawn to Romans 10:17, “So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the God’s Word.” The second word that caught my attention was “hope”. Hope in heaven produces faith in Jesus Christ and love for all the saints. This caused me to think of 1 John 3:2-3, “.… we shall see Christ as he really is. Everyone who has this hope in Him purifies Himself just as He is pure.”
In conclusion, faith gives us confidence in Jesus Christ and hope in heaven leads us to righteousness.
Announcement: we need to adjust our parking across the street from our lower building. Instead of backing our vehicles in, we need to parallel park behind the between the orange cone and the stop sign.
No Monday night potluck and the community bar b que has been postponed.
Memory – “Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. 3 And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure.” 1 John 3:2–3 (NLT)
February 23, 2020
Have you recently sat around with friends and in your conversation talked about God’s Word and your walk with Jesus Christ? I get to do that several times a week at predetermined times but also sometimes it just happens. During these conversations as the discussion centers on God, His goodness, love and the benefits that he gives us are repeated. And as we are talking and as we go our separate ways our attitudes and thoughts are more confident because we have focused on our Lord. In fact, that is a promise from God. Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you.” So I encourage you, in your planned and random conversations with each other, to bring up something that you can brag on Jesus. And during your day think often and thankfully about Him and enjoy the peace you receive.
Bible passage meditation: Isaiah 26:3, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you.”
February 16, 2020
ARE YOU MATURING IN YOUR CHRISTIAN WALK?
Every Christian starts out as a babe in Christ. It is OK to stay there for a while, but God’s desire is that all of His children would become mature adults. The Bible encourages us to leave the milk of the Word, food for spiritual infants, and advance to the meat of the Word, food for growing Christians. This is not just talking about Bible knowledge, as important as that is, we are also talking about our motivations and attitudes towards God, others and life. We know we are becoming mature in our faith when we follow Christ for who He is not just for what He will do for us. Are you still a spiritual child only waiting for God to bless you, or are you a spiritual adult looking for ways to serve others?
Memory and meditation – John 14:21, “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”
February 9, 2020
JESUS CHRIST IS MORE CONCERNED ABOUT YOUR CHARACTER THAN YOUR COMFORT!
I know we often say God is always there for us and that is true. But we must be careful not to make ourselves and our wants more important than Jesus Christ. It is a fact that one of the main reasons God brought us into His family is to bring glory to His name. Ephesians 1:5-6 says, “In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will – to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.” We are recipients of God’s great blessings and benefits when we make God our Sovereign and not just a vending machine. That is why I am encouraging you to memorize and apply this verse with me every day: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:33-34. If you take this challenge I would love for you to tell me how it works out.
February 2, 2020
Romans 12:18, “Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.”
Are you struggling to get along with other people? Or maybe it is just one or two family members or friends or acquaintances. If this describes you, then there are Biblical actions you can take. If you don’t take these actions you will lose some or all of your joy. First, confess your part of the problem. Second, give grace to the other person, give them what they need not what they deserve. Third, don’t try to get even or go one up on them: Romans 12:19, “Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God.” And fourth, get over it: I Corinthians 6:7, “Why not just accept the injustice and leave it at that?” In the beginning it is never easy to accept the injustice, but as this becomes a principle in your life it will become your natural response. So the question we all face is, would we rather have joy or would we rather get even?
May God richly bless you this week, and may we all follow God through His guide for us in living.
January 26, 2020
IS YOUR FAITH ACTIVE?
In the last six years I have learned much more about faith. I have learned that faith is not a feeling or just a mental attitude but it is acting like you think God really means what He says. Or we could say it this way, “God said it, I believe it, so I’m going to act on it.” Faith is acting on the directions, commands and promises of God. So for example, when we worry about our financial needs being met, we are to look to see what God tells us to do. Matthew 6:31–34 says,“So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” So, should you work hard on not worrying or on behavior modification? No, the action to take is to surrender yourself to His will, not your own, and obey his commands. The result will be, “…he will give you everything you need!” If you keep on worrying, that means you are not surrendering that area of your life to obey God. By the way, it really does work.
“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” Matthew 6:33
January 19, 2020
THOU SHALT LAUGH!
This may not be the eleventh commandment, but it is good instruction. It is easy now, and always has been, to focus on all of the negatives of life. It really isn’t anything new. But let us consider what the wisest man said about this, and it is found in our Bibles in Proverbs 17:22, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.”Have you developed the habit to look for humor each day? Do you find the things you read and watch are predominately dark and criminal? Or do you have a habit of feeding your mind on happy, positive and good, overcoming evil? Are you thinking that if your life is going well it is just temporary? I really am hoping that no one that is reading this has the attitude of that old song from Hee Haw: “Gloom, despair and agony on me; deep dark depression and excessive misery; if it weren’t for bad luck I’d have no luck at all; gloom despair and agony on me.” Instead of that attitude, have this attitude: 1 Thessalonians 5:16–18, “Rejoice evermore. 17 Pray without ceasing. 18 In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”
Memory: “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.” Proverbs 17:22
January 12, 2020
Philippians 3:13–14, “No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” This is a brand new year so I encourage you to not bring into the new year all your regrets about what could have/should have been done. From the verses above we are told how to live without regrets from the past, and how to not bring them into the present. So what does it mean to forget - does it mean to strike it from your mind so you never consider it again? No, that is impossible. What it does mean is that you are to choose not to dwell on it when it comes to your mind. And you do that by remembering the promises of God’s forgiveness and forgetfulness of all of our sins. So when you begin feeling bad about the bad that you have done just remember you are forgiven.
Meditation verse; Philippians 3:13–14, “No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”