Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Year's Eve

I want to wish you safe celebrations tonight.  It is natural for us to look back on this year and to set resolutions for the coming year.  My prayer is that you do not dwell on the negative events of the past for they are the stepping stones on which you firmly planted your feet to get to the next level.  For those who have endured tough times, remember that for each cry of, “I don’t know how I’ll get through this”…your prayer was heard and answered.  For here you are – in this space and in this time – you are here and you are loved by a God that is greater than our biggest, creative imagination. 

As we enter the New Year may we cross the threshold knowing our living Lord just a little bit more than we did this time one year ago.  May we look forward to all that our Lord has in store for us and may we even now marvel at the miraculous escape routes He has planned for us when things get frustrating, tiring, and scary. 

May you feel in your heart and mind and, yes, even in every step of your feet, that Jesus is indeed your great advocate to the Father. When we turn our eyes from Him with our thoughts, words, or deeds, may we take comfort in knowing that Jesus is the one saying to His Father, “extend your mercy upon this dear one…I know him and he knows me and I can vouch for his heart”.

It is my joy and my pleasure and a blessing to my spirit that you and I are companions on this journey.  Let us all grab hands and step in to 2014 and always remember we are in this together.  God Bless you.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Arise and Go

The prophet Elijah was told by God to prophesy that a famine was coming on the land. That is not a ministry that will make you very popular but Elijah was obedient to the Lord. The Lord protected him and sent him to a place beside a brook called Cherith. This is a beautiful name for a brook, although we do not know if it was as beautiful as it sounds. But nevertheless, after a while the brook dried up (see 1 Kings 17:3-7). Everyone can go a considerable amount of time without eating but after a few short days without water, life cannot be sustained. So I imagine Elijah became concerned when his water supply dried up.

The word of the LORD came to him, “Arise, go to Zarephath . . . I have commanded a widow there to feed you” (verses 8-9). Elijah, who seemed to have very little provision, trusted and obeyed God but yet he was being sent to a poor widow. “So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, a widow was there gathering sticks” (verse 10).

Elijah asked her for a jar of water and a morsel of bread and she responded, “As the LORD your God lives, I have nothing baked, only a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a jug” (verse 12).

This widow was responding to him out of her hurt. She and her son were starving and Elijah had come and said, “God sent me here to have you feed me.” She is looking at her resources and thinking, “This is impossible!” And then she said to him, “Now I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it and die” (verse 12). 

Elijah’s response was rather strange: “Do not fear; go and do as you have said” (verse 13).

Why would he say that? Because he knew that God was not going to abandon this woman and her child. He knew that as she obeyed God and blessed others through the little bit that she had, she would become blessed herself. The more she gave away, the more God increased what she had (see verses 14-16).

Obey God and you will see the windows of heaven open. God will not withhold His hand from you. He longs to pour out His blessings on you, to show you His favor.

--Thanks to by Gary W. for sharing this

Sunday, December 1, 2013

When The World Says, "You Can't"

I refuse to live in a world of I cant’s.  This world is completely full of people and organizations and company’s telling us we cannot do this or that.   There are people who believe that the Bible is full of ‘shall not’ and ‘cannot do this’.  But actually the Bible is where we should be getting the courage and strength every single day to say I CAN and I WILL. Take a look at the famous John 14 chapter. 

The word ‘will’ shows up 26 times (New Revised Standard Version) and seven of those are Jesus saying, “I will”.  The very first verse in chapter 14 does, actually, give us a directive to not do something:  “Do NOT let your hearts be troubled.”  In The Message version of the Bible is simply says, “Don’t let this throw you.”
Tonight I had to stop, rather abruptly, the rapidly rising river of I cannot.  I had to say to my heart and to my spirit and, of course, my brain, “don’t let this throw you”.  All of my current troubles should only force me to do one thing: pray.

When praying through the flood of “can not’s”, we must thank God for all that He has done to lead us to this place.  All those past times when we cried out about how we cannot possibly get through this ordeal or that one; He has come through in His promise to sustain us. Then we ask God to hold us through this particular time of turmoil and to show us what He would have us to do.  We thank Him, in advance, for the miraculous ways in which he is already seeing us through this ordeal.

When we face a trial in our life we absolutely must, without reservation and without lack of faith, get on our knees and pray to God.  Forgive us our sins, cleanse us from all wrong, help us to see the error of our ways, and bring us through this fire.  He WILL be faithful to all who call Him Lord. 

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”…John 14:27

"Whether you say you can, or you think you can't...you're right"...Henry Ford