LIFE

Death to the Christian is the funeral of all his sorrows and evils, and the resurrection of all his joys. –Aughey

1 Corinthians 15:51-52 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

You ever have a dream that you were back home with your Mom or Dad that has graduated into Heaven? I often wake up thinking about them and what it’s going to be like when I see them again. This is not some fairytale, folklore or fable. This is a precious promise from the Word of God that we can count on! Butterflies fill my stomach just thinking about the reunion we will have one day.

Do you have that promise, the promise of eternal security; the promise that you are in the hand of God and nothing can separate you from His love; the promise in knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that if you were to die today—you would wake up in Heaven? If not, you can today just ask!

Come See God’s Grace

This law tells me how crooked I am.  Grace comes along and straightens me out. -D.L. Moody

And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 1 Timothy 1:12-15

            As a picture of God’s redeeming grace, the Apostle Paul is a great example for who can be saved. A Pharisee of Pharisees, the chief of all sinners, Paul is saying if God can save me, He can save anyone! God can save anyone who wants to be saved. There is no sin so gross, no heart so wicked, or life so messed up that His grace cannot redeem! If the sinner calls out to God with a believing, repentant heart God will save them!

            Want to know more about how God saves a lost, dying, hurting soul in need of redemption? Want to hear more about how God can save you— GET UP, GET READY, and GO TO CHURCH!

MAKING AN IMPACT

1 Timothy 4:12, Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

            Thutmose III said while rallying his troops at the battle of Megiddo in 1479 B.C- “...the capturing of Megiddo is the capturing of a thousand towns! Capture ye firmly, firmly!”

            This statement got me thinking. What if Jesus Christ would capture our whole heart? How many other souls would be captured by the testimony we share? How many other souls would be impacted for of eternity?

            Want to make a impact in your home, in your work place, in the world; Repent of your sins, trust Jesus Christ as Saviour, start serving the Lord and be an example to those around you!

Serve the Lord

It is high time that the ideal of success should be replaced by the ideal of service. –Einstein

Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways. Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes. Haggai 1:5-6

            The Children of Israel had gotten their eyes off of the Lord and on material things. They were no longer satisfied with just a tent. They started building homes with roofs. Roofs with big archways and the ceilings underneath adorned with fancy carvings and such. Yet God’s House was lying destitute. There were none that cared. The Bible says that God called for a draught upon the land. The prophet Haggai gave the people the message of the Lord. He told them the problem of their complacency and they repented. God used this draught to get His people back on the same page with Him.

            Christian, have you gotten your eyes off the Lord and on material things? Consider your ways. Are you busy doing things but nothing for the Lord? Consider your ways. Take a moment and look at the world around us and consider this, “What am I doing for my Saviour?”

            What will the Lord use in order to get your attention? Will it be a short devotion? Will it be a message your pastor gives? What drought will come upon our life before you get back on the same page with the Lord?

SEEING GROWTH?

            We cannot judge what men are by what they have been formerly; what they will do by what they have done; age and experience may make men wiser and better. -Henry

So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous: verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth. Psalm 58:11

            While I get what Mr. Henry is saying, I don’t really care in the grand scheme of things if a man or woman is wiser or living a better life. You can have a change in your actions but still be bound for hell. What I want to see is the fruit of a repentant heart. I want to see if their actions are backing up their words. Not every person will grow spiritually at the same rate but what we desire is to see some growth. If there is no growth at all then there probably isn’t any life at all.

            As you survey your life this morning, has there been any growth spiritually? Is there a desire to please the Saviour? If there hasn’t been a change in your desires it’s a pretty good chance your destination hasn’t either. 2 Peter 1:10b, “…brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:”

LOVE BEYOND YOURSELF!

Those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young. -Pinero

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16

            I describe love as sacrifice. You see, love goes above and beyond what the world would suggest. The world says love is a feeling. While it feels good to be loved, that type of love changes because feelings change. The world says love is physical. While love is manifested in physical attraction, our physical bodies will change—what then? Some describe love as an emotional attraction to someone. Well, many people’s emotional state changes more than the weather. What happens when our emotions are like a roller coaster with the one we “love”?   

            Friend, to really find out what true love is look at The Lord Jesus! Look at His sacrifice for your salvation! His love toward you isn’t based on His feelings, your physic, or His emotions! His love toward you is based on His character. His character is defined in 1 John 4:16, “And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.”

NOTHING BUT THE BLOOD

Trust Christ and you shall live. The bloody sacrifice of Calvary is the only hope of sinners. -Spurgeon

Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: 1 Peter 1:18-19

            While we would have had some Knight in Shining armor to come lift us out of the depths of sin, God sent His only begotten Son to die on the bloody Cross of Calvary to wash away sin! There is nothing else that could pay the sin debt we owed! There was no other sacrifice that would satisfy the need. There was no other way in which for man to be saved but by the shed blood of God’s Son! Let me remind you friend, God’s ways are not our ways!

            Have you repented and trusted Jesus as your Saviour? Have you believed the Gospel message? If not now, when? We are not guaranteed tomorrow! Won’t you believe His Word today? Acts 16:31, “And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”

Be a Blessing!

            Blessed is the man who is too busy to worry in the daytime and too sleepy to worry at night. -Anonymous

A faithful man shall abound with blessings: but he that maketh haste to be rich shall not be innocent. Proverbs 28:20

            Jesus said, “I must be about my Father’s business.” Jesus had a job to do and He was getting it done. He came to seek and save that which was lost so He was witnessing in the temple, on the streets, in the houses, and anywhere else He could have an audience.

            Child of God, what are you busy doing? Are you about the Father’s business? Are you being the witness Jesus wants you to be? You have an audience; at home, at work, at the barber shop, in the salon, etc. Who will you be a blessing to today by telling them Good News of the Gospel?

            I like what my former pastor says, “You can make excuses not to serve the Lord or you can make opportunities to serve Him.” The choice is up to you today!

FRUIT FOR YOUR LABORS

We are living in a day where the church needs to be gaining ground not backing down!

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. John 15:5

            The time to take a stand is now. There is no reason to slow down, only reasons to go forward. These reasons come in many different ages, nationalities, and two genders! But we cannot win the battles without being filled with the Spirit of God! In order to be filled we must be abiding in Jesus! We must be under the influence of God Himself! We do this by being submerged in the Word. We do this by being submitted to His Will. We do this by being sanctified to His Work!

            Want to be on fire for Jesus? Want to be producing fruit for the glory of God? Start off by GETTING UP, GETTING READY, and GOING TO YOUR CHURCH TODAY!

DO IT BECAUSE GOD WANTS YOU TO!

You must do the thing you think you cannot do. -Eleanor Roosevelt

            And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Colossians 3:23

            Moses led the children of Israel out of the hands of pharaoh, through the Red Sea, and up to the Promised Land. Gideon led 300 men to defeat an army of some say over 125,000 warriors. Paul overcame obstacles to become one of the Bible’s most discussed apostles. He wrote, under the inspiration of God, much of the New Testament giving us insight to daily Christian living and on things to come.

How did those men get the victory; they did what God wanted them to do. And when they did it, they didn’t care what the leaders in the synagogue thought. They didn’t care what the crowd down at the gym thought. They didn’t care what their 401k looked like. They wanted to obey and please God, so they did! Will you?

KEEP YOUR WORD!

Ecclesiastes 5:5, Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay.

Many people have forgotten the hand shake commitment. You know, when a man would shake another man’s hand and that was better than any attorney written contract. Those days have long gone when it comes to men. But God doesn’t change and the same Word He proclaimed in the Bible are still binding today!

Child of God, always be faithful to your commitments to the Lord. If you say you’re going to do something for Him, do it. He has and will continue to fulfill His Word to you!

It’s one thing to not keep your word to a friend, co-worker, or pastor but when you make a commitment to the Lord and don’t keep it- woe is you!!! 

Praising or Pouting

            How you look at your circumstances may just determine the outcome of your circumstances!

                        My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise. Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early. I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people: I will sing unto thee among the nations. For thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds. Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens: let thy glory be above all the earth. Psalm 57:7-11

            David’s attitude in his circumstances was that of steadfastness, faithfulness, and obedience. David kept his eyes on the Lord. David praised God and sang songs during his dilemmas. David said in his tragedies he would be a witness to the people and among the nations. David exalted the Lord with his life and gave God the glory for everything God was doing and he accomplished.

            What is your attitude in the dilemma you are in right now? Are you being faithful in your service to the Lord? Do you continue to serve Him even though you are discouraged, despondent, or depressed? David didn’t stray much but when he did he repented and continued on for the glory of God! What are you doing?     

GET BACK TO WHERE YOU BELONG!

            A visit to where God helped you once can rekindle a burning desire to serve the Lord!

             I am the God of Bethel, where thou anointedst the pillar, and where thou vowedst a vow unto me: now arise, get thee out from this land, and return unto the land of thy kindred. Genesis 31:13I

            Jacob found himself in a rut of sorts and God sent him home! He sent him to the place in which Jacob could find help! A place in which God had worked before! A place in which God would work again!

            Do you ever get stuck in a rut? I have! Sometimes it seems I just can’t get out! You know what I find that helps out the most; finding a place where I met with God before. A time that God showed up in my life and did what ONLY He could do—HE HELPED ME!

Consistently, I have found that place to be in HIS WORD, with HIS PEOPLE, and in HIS HOUSE!

TIME FOR CHURCH!  

GET UP, GET READY, and GO TO CHURCH!

We took sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house of God in company. Psalm 55:14

Online sermons, TV evangelists, apathy, and many more distractions have crept into the church house! Instead of getting fed from the local body of believers, we get online or turn the TV channel to our favorite preacher. We forsake what God has called good. We take for granted what God gave Himself for! Complacency sets in when we do not hear the importance of sharing the Gospel. Apathy sets in when we do not get involved in the church.

Are you well on your way to getting to church on time? Will you make an extra effort to get to Sunday School? What are you willing to sacrifice if not? Your personal walk with Jesus? Your children’s salvation? A friend’s salvation? Who or what are you willing to sacrifice so you can sleep in, go finishing, mow the yard, or just veg out?

DON’T SPEAK LIES ABOUT OTHERS!  

Never throw mud. You may miss your mark, but you will have dirty hands. -Parker

He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool. Proverbs 10:18

Several years ago we were going through a rough time in the ministry. Lies about me and my family came out but very few people came to me to find out if the information that was said was true. I found it amazing that folks you ministered with for years were quick to believe a lie told by someone they hardly knew. I often wonder why professing Christians don’t follow God’s Word when they have a dispute (ought) with someone else in their church family.

Christian friend, if you find yourself with some bitterness brewing because you feel someone has done you wrong in the ministry or you have heard something about them, go to them. Talk it out! If you don’t, you give place for the devil to work and he would love nothing more than to destroy the relationship you have with your church family!

WHO ARE YOU SERVING?

There are many of us that are willing to do great things for the Lord, but few of us are willing to do little things. –Moody

Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. Isaiah 6:8

I’m sure all of us have had folks cross into our life with the only intent was to see how much they could get out of our pocket. Some slip into the church with the same thoughts in mind. This is not why the church is here. The church is here to evangelize the lost and edify the believer. It’s not here to equip the moocher! Even though we the church are to serve we are also suppose to be wise with the finances God has given us!

When the opportunity arises, are you willing to serve where God opens the door? If not, why not? What’s hindering you from serving? Why ever it is, get it out of your life and be in preparation to serve where God plants you! Who are you serving?

WHO YOU FOLLOWING?

Be careful who you follow, they may lead you straight to hell!

Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. John 8:12

Have you ever had to follow someone on the road when you didn’t know where you were going? Sometimes the one leading you will drive too fast and leave you at the stop light. Sometimes they will make a wrong turn leading you somewhere you shouldn’t be. Sometimes you have to start all over because they led you so far down the wrong road; it was easier to start over!

When we follow someone who isn’t following the Lord, we will always end up going to opposite direction the Lord want us to go. Some follow fools; they say there isn’t a God at all, leading people to hell. Some follow the backslidden; they say it isn’t worth it, leading people away from God’s blessings. Some follow those bitter; they are holding a grudge and will not forgive, leading people from God’s forgiveness.

Who are you following?

WHO ARE YOU LEANING ON  

Real true faith is man's weakness leaning on God's strength. -D.L. Moody

As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Colossians 2:6-7

Your actions will reveal who you are leaning on. When things go wrong do you call your parents to dig you out? When you need a helping hand do you reach out to that friend you shouldn’t be around to start off with! The Lord tells us in these scriptures we need to “walk in him.” We need to have a mindset of He is the go to guy!

PEACE IS SPELLED JESUS

There is no peace where God is not at!

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:14

So many people are searching for Nirvana, an awakening, tranquility, or some other type of inner peace that only a relationship with Jesus brings. Sure people may travel to distant lands and find a sense of happiness. They may buy large homes that will bring contentment until they have to clean it. They may even have a job that pays large amounts of money and it will buy happiness until the money runs out. But true peace only comes when Jesus is on the throne of your heart!

When Jesus came to Earth as a babe, the Word of God says, peace was on Earth! If you want true, everlasting peace— repent of your sin and trust Jesus as your Saviour! Let Him in your life! Let Him have His way! If He isn’t in your life—you do not have true peace!

LOVE IS SPELLED OBEY

Wicked men obey from fear, good men, from love. –Aristotle

If ye love me, keep my commandments. John 14:15

Our obedience in serving the Lord comes from the love He has shown to us. In love He sent His Son to the Cross. In love He sent His Word to man. In love He sent His Spirit to be our comforter. In love He will save you and me from our sin. In love He’s coming back to get His people. In love He will not let sin enter Heaven’s gate. In love He will separate the saved from the lost. In love He will keep His Word.

What an example for you and I in the way we ought to obey and serve Him. It all should be done out of love! Love of the Lord!