Saturday, May 30, 2015

It's life changing!

We all fell down, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is useless for you to fight against my will. ’ (Acts of the Apostles 26:14 NLT)

It is useless to resist the power of Jesus. On the road to Damascus Paul finally realized God is in charge. We will all get to that point in our life where we realize we need God. It may come too late, but it will happen. The Bible says every knee will bow. Why would anyone choose to fight against the will of the creator of the universe? Why would we fight the power of Jesus?

Over the next several weeks students across America will be graduating from high school, many college students have completed the same life changing event. Graduation is a life changing event. It is the turning of a page into a new phase of life. I have experienced two graduations for myself, a wedding to my best friend, the birth of my three great daughters, but nothing compares to my commitment to Jesus and how that has changed my life. This event continues to change me and mold me. Jesus is embedded in every aspect of my life. Praise God I know him. I don't know what I would do without the daily presence of Jesus in my life. It is life changing and eternal. We all need to make this life changing commitment before it's too late.

Thank you Lord. Just like you changed Paul on the road to Damascus, you have changed me. This life changing experience is for everyone. Please Lord, reveal yourself to those that read these words. Help them to realize life is incomplete without you. Help them to confess their sins and turn their life's plan over to you. Help them to believe you died for them and love them beyond anything they could imagine. I love you Lord! I thank you Lord for my life with you! Amen!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The encourager!

When the uproar was over, Paul sent for the believers and encouraged them. Then he said good-bye and left for Macedonia. While there, he encouraged the believers in all the towns he passed through. Then he traveled down to Greece, (Acts of the Apostles 20:1-2 NLT)

How do you go about preaching the Gospel? So much of what we hear is gloom and doom. Society has gotten very skeptical and cynical. Even Christians feel obligated to bear the bad news. I really wish we would just emphasize the positives of life with God. Realistically we need to spend more time encouraging new believers, young followers and even stalwarts of the faith.

Life is not easy. So spreading encouragement could be exactly what people may need. It's so much easier to face trials if you hear the voice of your family and friends shouting encouragement. Life is going to be difficult at times. It is guaranteed! It may feel there is no way you can handle it. That is where you need your friends in the faith to come along side and encourage you. 

Send out an email, call someone, or go visit them. Do it specifically with the attitude to encourage them and let them know you are behind them. Bring the light of Jesus into their lives at the point where they need him the most.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Speak out!

One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision and told him, “Don’t be afraid! Speak out! Don’t be silent! For I am with you, and no one will attack and harm you, for many people in this city belong to me.” (Acts of the Apostles 18:9-10 NLT)

Sometimes I speak out at times I should be silent. My discernment is not always what it should be. I have hurt people by what I say. I have tried to use words when actions would have been better. 

The more I read and study the word of God the better I am at saying the right things and speaking out in the proper way. If I rely on my sinful nature for judgment on the words that come from my mouth, I'm in trouble. If I rely on the guiding of the Holy Spirit, I can rest assured, when I speak out, it is within God's plan. 

We all need to spend time with the Lord, reading his word, praying for guidance, wisdom and discernment. But, with the prompting of the Spirit of the Lord, we need to speak out and not be afraid of the enemy and those worldly consequences. 

I pray I can do that!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Consequences.

Then God said to Abraham, “Your responsibility is to obey the terms of the covenant. You and all your descendants have this continual responsibility. (Genesis 17:9 NLT)

As parents, one of the lessons we want to teach our kids is, "Take responsibility for your actions." If you make a mistake, admit it. If you do not obey God, you will suffer the consequences. If you reject the God of the universe, your ultimate consequence is death. Many of the ills of this world are consequences of our sin and separation from God. We want to blame those things on God. Many people even use this as an excuse to reject God. But God gives us freedom to make choices. He also gives us the consequences. 

I can not ignore the fact that I have caused many of my own problems in this life. Poor choices, not going to the father for his wisdom and counting on my own understanding, lead to tragic consequences. I am responsible for those choices and I can not avoid the results.

Dear Lord, I know that I can not live this life to its fullest without you. I can not avoid the consequences for my poor choices and ignoring your plan. Pleas Lord forgive me for my sins, forgive me for  separating myself from you. Help me to learn from my mistakes and to continue to look to you for guidance and wisdom. You are making and I am so thankful that you do not hold a grudge. You love me even through my sin. I praise you for that love, mercy and grace. Amen!


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

No burdens!

So why are you now challenging God by burdening the Gentile believers with a yoke that neither we nor our ancestors were able to bear? We believe that we are all saved the same way, by the undeserved grace of the Lord Jesus.” (Acts of the Apostles 15:10-11 NLT)

Boy do we Christians do this on a regular basis. We love to put rules and restrictions on believers. We burden with rules and useless rituals all in the name of religion. We are more like the Pharisees every day. 

We are all saved the same way. We all are sinners and saved only by the grace of God. We need to eliminate the rhetoric and get straight to the point. The Lord Jesus came to earth to be one of us. He died for us and he rise from the grave to save us from our sins. It's simple, it's not filled with "yokes" that we can't handle. No restrictions, rules, or exceptions. We are saved by the grace of Jesus! We don't need to do anything. We just need to accept that grace and love!

Dear Lord, thank you for loving me even when I'm unlovable. Thank you for not coming to burden me. You are amazing, your grace is amazing!