Sunday, June 30, 2019

If Only...

I was reading in Job. This is like my 11th or 12th time going through it. The most memorable being when I LISTENED through it.  I have it on MP3.

But, aside from learning that you can always learn something new, this time something new popped out to me.

For all their words, which are part of God's Word, they were rebuked for them. My guess is although there was something about their attitude the words were important enough for God to include them.

The part I was in today was prophetic in that Job wished that all this would be written down in a book.  He spoke his assignment before it was to be.

We who are in Christ ought to also write down what the Spirit is doing in us.  In Acts, it was the Spirit who spoke to Peter. Doesn't say the Lord as it was back a few chapters earlier when Saul was stopped on the road to Damascus.  Writing down or recording tends to make us remember.

We need reminding.  As funny as the movie was in "Flight of the Navigator" the robot ship explained what happened when he tried copying his star charts into the kids brain. He found out that the human brain leaks. It doesn't naturally allow us to recall everything. 

We need to remember the lessons we go through.  We need to be reminded of when God saved us, delivered us, kept us together or got us through life. It's important to us for things yet future when we face more things in life.

We despair easily. We get angry easily. We latch onto loneliness easily. We latch onto...well you get it.

We, like Israel, are prone to wander in our thoughts. Being self centered comes easily.  Focusing on what Jesus said and is doing is part of taking up our cross and following Him.

Start a Journal today.  Write down your feelings and things that God is doing in you and through you. Write down His blessings.  Write down your lessons.

You will indeed begin to see the fingerprints of God.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Freedom and Peace

It's early in the morning and my thoughts certainly are not my own.  I consider what thoughts of yesterday that were there. About family, about friends and about those whom are only acquaintances.

To see past what you are shown is, I think, a gift from God.  To have understanding that's outside of common sense. To just 'know' without understanding how you know.  The Holy Spirit can go places we cannot.  He can explain things that are unexplainable by man. Truth is at the center of His existence.  In much of life, like the days before Google Maps, He has the road atlas if we but ask.

When bitterness takes root, when idolatry has a foothold, when loneliness consumes, then temptation is at its peak.

The temptation to take things into our own hands. God's not doing anything so it's up to me. God doesn't care so I am on my own.  God left me so life is what I must make it.  He's not giving me what I want so I will do what I want.

Lies, lies, lies.

Again.  Lies, lies, lies.

Choice has been ours since the Cross of Christ. Choice to turn to the right or left. Choice to live for ourselves or for Jesus. Choice to be selfish or selfless. 

Satan has been around us our entire lives, just as Christ has been.  He knows what he sees that works in getting to us.  Discernment comes from God when we but ask. Letting go of chains that are not attached to us is the truth we cannot see. We believe we cannot let go of that sin or that desire or that temptation, but it can be done.  The love of God goes past all of that. Wrapped in a chain doesn't make it part of us. The lie is just that, to believe it's so much a part of us that we lack the strength to break it.  In Christ there are no unbreakable chains. 

In Christ Jesus, He said It is Finished!

Letting go means trusting in Him who has the strength to lift you up out of your bitterness, your loneliness, your despair.

Letting go and asking forgiveness breaks through where your strength always will fail. 

What have you held onto that needs to go?  Come back to Christ and ask Him to forgive you and let go of these chains that are not attached to your life.  Wrapped around you yes, but not attached to you.

Freedom and peace are what awaits you.

Friday, June 28, 2019

This is Our World

"Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness;
Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!
Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes
And clever in their own sight!" Isaiah 5:20-21

This indeed is the world in which we live.

Celebrating murdering of babies.
Celebrating homosexuality.
Celebrating sin.

Condemning those who stand up for their faith in God.
Condemning those who fight for the rights of the unborn.
Condemning those who call what they are doing, sin.

Excusing their behavior, their lifestyle, their selfish desires.  Condemning you if you do not support them.

The cup of iniquity of this world is almost full.

Scripture said all this was coming. 

Believe now in Christ Jesus for Salvation now before it's too late.  This cup is almost full.

Not slow so that You can go.

The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

Certainly it seems that patience is the opposite of what those in this world want.

Faster car. More stuff added to that car to do more now, not later.  Intersections changed from 4 way stops, to flashing caution lights then to a roundabout because people have no patience to wait.

Phones keep getting upgraded to do more and exercise your brain less. 

At work you are in the midst of exercises to figure out how to streamline and not be impatient.  Removing frustration and delays.

People want instant gratification. They don't want to wait anymore.  Don't want to earn the right to anything, they want it given to them.  From healthcare to food to money to a college education.  They want someone else to pay for it.  Little do they realize that someone else is them.

We indeed live in the day where people are going on as it mentions in Scripture. 

2 Peter 3:4 "and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.”"

Think really hard about your life and priorities.  I know that for me letting go of things has brought better things from the hands of God.  It's amazing how that is.

My insistence isn't necessarily His will.
A child may insist but the parents will prevail. 

The problem with a society bent on instant gratification is they miss everything that is important.  If we were legally allowed to drive 70 everywhere you would never see the beauty of God's creation.  You would miss the joy on a child's face at seeing them discover something.

But the opposite is as true as it is concerning Jesus.  He's not being reckless about just returning when He wants.  He isn't being impatient about it.  He's being obedient about it.  He stated that the Father appointed the exact time of His return. Jesus is doing what His Father wants.

God's patience towards those who haven't yet come to Christ is great.  But not without limits.  Many people, He knows, will not come to Him and are taken from this world. They were given chances.  Yet their heart was steadfast against God.
By no means is He being slow about fulfilling Scripture.  It's just like what we read about the beginning of the Gospels when Jesus was lead into the wilderness to be tempted.  Satan will not rush things.
He has no power to do so.  He will not goad God into coming at an inopportune time.  As the opening passage says, He isn't wanting anyone to perish but He knows people will. 

That second passage is indeed a voice from today's headlines.  Where is He? If He was coming where's He at?

Think for a moment at the restraint Jesus is showing.  Knowing that mankind is heading right back to what it was before the Flood.  Read how it was!  At that point mankind had pushed God away and only 8 people survived.  His patience has limits.

This time it's not a decision on the limits of patience.  It's on the date the Father had set.  So there's no really accurate gauge to see exactly when.  But Jesus said you will indeed get an idea of how close it is by what you see going on around you.  The evidence will show the time is near. 

So don't procrastinate in your walk with God.  Don't put huge amounts of effort and money into your selfish desires.  If indeed the time is near, as well it is, shouldn't you be found doing what God wants of you rather that anything else?

Scripture has stories in it of bridesmaids who were ready for the groom to come and those who were not.  Some had enough oil for their lamps the rest did not.  While those who did not scrambled to get ready for the groom, He came and only those who were ready went with Him.  The rest were left outside. 

Will you be found by Jesus as those ready for Him or will He find you not concerned or ready at all?   Those who are ready have an expectation of His arrival. Those who are not do not.

I am excited about His soon return. I am looking forward to being with Him forever.

Are you?  Are you one who is about the Father's business or are you pursuing your own thing? 

Think about it now while there still is a now.  While you still have time.  While His patience still is extended.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Where are you?

Worldly wisdom recommends the path of compromise and talks of “moderation.” According to this carnal policy, purity is agreed to be very desirable—but we are warned against being too picky. Truth may certainly be followed—but error is not to be severely denounced. “Yes,” says the world, “be spiritually minded by all means, but do not deny yourself some pleasurable society, an occasional party, or some of the world’s entertainment. What’s the good of avoiding something when it is so fashionable, and everybody does it?”  C.H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening.

Where are you?  Where are you on this scale called your life?  I have been in the position of being pretty much told as Spurgeon wrote for this day.  That oh you are being too serious.  Lighten up.  Don't be like that.  It's probably, besides the fact that I love many instrumentalists, that the Benny Goodman Story resonates with me to some degree.  He had a song called "Don't Be That Way".

"Oh lighten up! Have fun!"
"Don't be a stick in the mud!"

Many other ways it has been said.  Some have seen a t-shirt that says something about being too serious about Jesus, that I don't know, He was pretty serious when He died for me on the Cross.

The whole entertainment world would be in jeopardy if Christians would listen to what Spurgeon wrote for today. 

Those in your life wouldn't know how to handle you if you took Jesus more seriously. 

Let me tell you something.  I have gained far more than I appear to have lost in my relationship with Jesus.  I have a peace the world cannot buy.  That kind of currency is only coming from God.  No where else.

Oh you're going to miss out on all the fun!

Hate to break it to you but Christians have fun too.  Just not at the all out expense of others like the world does.  To mimic that point the world tries to give everyone a trophy.  Make everyone equal.  Well only in sin is everything and everyone equal.

Only in Christ are we set apart.  This world is not my home.  I am an alien and stranger here.  My home is in Heaven.  What the world values honestly is rubbish.
Oh people who aren't living a Christian life will never understand it.  So don't expect them to.  Scripture doesn't tell you to educate, says let your light shine.  Doesn't tell you to fix others, says to call upon the one who can.

I have not been through as much as others, certainly not to the extent as many who lose their very lives over standing on the Word of God.  But it's there. 

We who are Christians are told to take up our Cross and follow Christ.  The cross in those days was two parts. The long section and the crossmember that goes across from wrist to wrist. Either part is incredibly heavy on its own.  But either can be carried if you let go of everything else in your hands.

So are you in this life to enjoy it for yourself or are you in it to obey God?

Worldly issues are important but the relationship with Jesus is THE most important.  The Amish may try to live, as many of them do, apart from the influences of the world but they cannot escape those influences.

How seriously do you take living for Jesus?  It's another question that I cannot answer for you.  Are your thoughts and intentions about you all the time, is Jesus there at all?  Are you so into everything else that there's no room for Jesus?

Is your career so important that there's no room for Jesus?

Are you so into so much that if you find time, you'll talk to Him? 

Be honest with yourself.

Right here.  Right now.

Don't let the list of excuses grow by even one more.

Jesus took YOUR place on a cross. He was tortured for YOU.  He was whipped for YOU.  He who knew no sin was made to be sin on your behalf. As Scripture says.

So how do you repay this? 

Hate to break it to you.  But if you look back on your life and all you see is you.  You have a problem.

If a movie were made of your life would Jesus even be in the credits?

There's a kind of life that cannot be explained, but only experienced, when you live for Jesus.  Yes there are joys and pains but Jesus is there with you through them.  When you leave Him behind then it is you going through them. 

Oh I've done this, I've done that. God doesn't care if I do this...

Well, yes, He does.

God doesn't sleep.  He is always watching. 

There's a shirt that I want that spells it out for me.

I would rather stand with God and be judged by the world, than stand with the World and be judged by God.

If people think that I am too serious about God, oh well, not my problem. 
If people wrongly believe that I am not enjoying life, again, not my problem.
If people want to nitpick me about what I believe, for standing on God's Word, bring it on.
If people want to avoid me because I believe in Christ, I will pray for them.  I won't return the hatred or discord they emit towards me. 

If people choose to believe lies about me, I leave it to God to correct them.

If you want to know where I find joy, ask me. I will tell you.  I love to learn, and the Holy Spirit is the universe's greatest teacher.  When I got that right, everything started falling into place. 

So what that I know something about computers, electronics and dozens of other things. I want to know more about the Bible and about Jesus.

I can guarantee you that nobody who has died whether or not they are a Christian misses one single thing from this world. 

In Hell, everyone there missed out on a relationship with Jesus.

In Heaven, everyone is only concerned about seeing Him.  Not about who won the latest game.  Or what sights they missed seeing in this world.  Not about who they got to meet.  Or what happened to what celebrities.

So what's your priority?

So where are you?

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

A Simple Prayer

Of all that I read this morning, in the book of Job, of the book of Acts.  Of Spurgeon's book or even Blackaby's.  What I think God had me look at was the prayer at the end of today's Our Daily Bread.

Father, give me the courage to live for what matters most.

Think on that for a moment.

What do you live for?  Work? Family? Don't know, but are just getting by?

There's a lot of potential power in that verse to change every aspect of your life and heart.

I have loved the fact that my Wife introduced me to Mark Lowry through videos a long time ago. 

In one of them he talks about what it means to come to Christ.  I will not direct quote him here. But you can Google it yourself but will summarize.

Life is a series of ups and downs. Hills and valleys. Joys and pains. That's without Christ.  Jesus said that when we come to Him that He gives us life more abundant. 

So what does that mean?  It means higher highs that we could ever imagine. It means lower lower than we could ever live through on our own apart from God.

Why would a Holy God put people He's calling His Son or Daughter through all that?  Why?

When we come to Christ, we are made new. Are born again. The life we begin to live has many purposes.  Not just to get out of Hell.  We are being made new. Transformed from a life of sin to a life of holiness.  We are also changed along the way in order to reach others who are themselves going to relate to some aspect of your life.  If we are living as we should before God, it will prompt them to either ask you about Him and how they can receive Him or it will have the opposite effect. Not everyone will say yes to Christ's offer.  If they had there would be no weeping and gnashing of teeth by the people who rejected Him.

Father, give me the courage to live for what matters most.

What DO you live for?  Chasing your wants and dreams or are you living for Jesus?  Hey I am only calling it as God tells me to type it. 

In a few places in Scripture it mentions you can't love God and love the world.  That you can't serve two Masters. You will love one and hate the other.  Read it, it's there.   Google it.

For many of the last 6 or 7 years I had been struggling with the whole notion of trying to figure out what dreams to live for.  As a kid you have dreams of life you would like to live. I couldn't do what I had dreamed of.  Which was to be an astronaut.  Oh I was passionate about the Space program.  Somewhere I think I might still have my folders full of clippings from the Shuttle program.  One for each ship. I had known the path to becoming an astronaut. But God said no. My physical limitations wouldn't allow me to go that path.  My eyes, my flat feet etc.
So I got as close to that dream as I could. Ended up eventually working at a place that made parts for the Shuttles. I could even see my handiwork in action at every launch.  Made stuff that went to Mars. To the International Space Station. That was long ago now, but hey that made it for me.

But then what do you do after you have lived that childhood dream? What's next?

Father, give me the courage to live for what matters most.

You find yourself either looking for a new dream or you find yourself coping with life.  No dreams or aspirations.  No working on anything that could be seen as a dream.

But God never stops working.  I now believe there's physical dreams for life and Spiritual dreams.  God's plans worked out through us.  To learn to live in this physical world you are taught by parents, family and other adults until you graduate from school.  Then you start applying what you are supposed to have learned.
In Christ you are taught by the Spirit, and go through life applying what you have learned.  In my beginning years of life in Christ, I was shown what my Spiritual dream was to be.  Foolish me thought that I could handle it right then and there.  I was a toddler trying to run a marathon without any training or preparation.

I wasn't ready for the dream.  After my physical dreams ended.  God brought me back around to my Spiritual dreams.  My training in writing and the times He taught me lessons were coming together. 

It was time to start living that Spiritual dream.  So with more changes to bring about His plans, which were indeed painful, but necessary I began a new journey.  This blog and posts on Facebook.

Father, give me the courage to live for what matters most.

I began asking God to explain the Bible to me.  So He did.  A little more each day.  I keep asking Him to show me more.  He does.

I had a vision once that I believe was God granting me something special.  I was sitting at a desk and all the sudden was seeing myself being drawn away from it, straight up.  Could see it quickly get smaller and smaller.  I then pulled my head up to look in front of me. I was in space.  I could feel a little bit of the coolness of space.  But what took my breath away was the beauty of seeing everything. The sun, moon and stars from where I was.  To see the Earth.  It lasted a minute or two then I was back here.

Have heard a phrase that goes along the lines of God gives His best to those who leave the choice to Him.

Ask yourself, who do you live for?  Are you living for yourself and what you can get out of life or are you living for Jesus?

I think on an old hymn "Living for Jesus". The words ask that question.

Pray this for yourself.

Father, give me the courage to live for what matters most.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

What's Important to You

I often sit and consider my life and what is around me. Have often wondered why some things that I have tried to sever ties with have been brought back to my life.

I have looked, or at least tried to, upon the things that I have accumulated in life and sometimes wonder why did I get that?

Why was it so important? 

Many have gone away on vacations or simply a timeout from life for a few days or more.  You pack clothes, a few personal items, a few extra things then you are gone. All that you possess stays behind. 

Some have an agenda worked out for this time away, some do not. They have planned for weeks to the last detail. If their plans work out then they consider it time well spent. 

As I grow older I think I am becoming less attached to some things when traveling.  I have often longed for a simpler life.  Less accumulation and more time relaxing and learning about God. 

It's a struggle.  We honestly do live with two enemies.  Ourselves and Satan.  Both love to toss desires to us as distractions.
Placing personally justified value on things that in reality we don't need or could do without.  Why do I have this? Why do I have that?  What possessed me to...well you get the idea. 

I think upon the a few people that weren't parables who met Jesus.  A Rich young man for one.  Had everything yet found himself lacking. Wanted Jesus but when told about what to give up he went away sad.  About people invited to be with Jesus who made up excuses. They had bought property and had to go look at it. Had this to do, that to do.  Excuses.

You will never take it with you.

I have family who to this day...decades later...are still dealing with what to do with the possessions left behind by family.  What to do with possession from friends.

What I have learned is indeed simplicity is often best.  I would rather sit and listen to God's creation than the foul words on a television or in a movie.  The insinuations in those are what they are.  Trying to persuade people that sin is ok. That sin is acceptable.  That if you don't accept sin ten you are on the outside.  You have the problem.

The goal of Satan is to keep people from getting to Heaven.  To keep people from a right relationship with Jesus.  The more distractions the more we don't look for Jesus. 

He wants to redefine what's important to us and get us to be the ones to say it.

He wants us to fill our minds with useless things so that there is no room for Jesus.
He wants us to believe how wronged we have been made to feel from our Creator.
How God did that to you, why should you follow Him?  How can a 'loving God' not accept you as you are? How can He really love you if your choice in gender for yourself is so offensive to Him that He won't let you into Heaven?

The truth is, we live in a world of deceptions.  A world of lies. Outside of the Bible, there is no real truth.  Jesus has unequivocally stated His love for everyone by going through all that He has in order to prove His love. 

He's told the truth and people don't believe it.  He created a man to be a man.  A woman to be a woman.  He told the world that a marriage is only between a man and woman.  He made no mistakes in how anyone was born to be.
We were born to be loved by Him.
We were born in sin, but don't have to stay in it.  He lived and died, and arose again to make it possible to become children of God. 

The most important thing in your life isn't your possessions.  Not your car, not your home, not your job. Not your career.  Honestly not even your family and friends.
Not even them.

The most important thing in your life is whether or not you are a believer in Jesus Christ as your Savior.  That's it. That's everything.

It's not your hairstyle, your fancy shoes, your colorful wardrobe.  Not your desire to travel, nor your desire to stay where you are.  Not your desire to be rich nor to just make enough to get by. 

Everything is not important but that single question.

Do you know Jesus as your personal Savior? 

Nothing you surround yourself with matters.  You could die today and it will still be here while you face Jesus to answer why you should be allowed into Heaven. 

Face it. Sports do not matter. Celebrities do not matter.  Famous people do not matter.  Family and friends are not going to be able to help you when you die.

It's just you and Jesus.  Those who do not know Jesus as Savior will be spending eternity in torment in Hell.  Apart from God.  A strange thing to say is all the bad people and good people will be in Hell. 

Only the saved will be in Heaven.

The Bible says that there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth from people who had said no to Jesus.  Weeping because in their eyes they were good people. They thought they weren't bad.  Gnashing people because they indeed refused to acknowledge God's truth and held fast to their hatred and anger for Him.

So what's important to you?  Really.

If truth be known are you really happy with all that you have? Are you truly satisfied with your possessions?  No. The truth is no you are not.

Sure for a moment they brought happiness but you will grow weary of them and they go into a closet or garage or storage space.  Then as time goes by you can't remember why you thought it to be important.

So be honest with yourself.

What's important to you?

I don't have your answer.  I can only share my own. 

Monday, June 24, 2019

Time isn't Forever

We live in an ever increasingly impatient world.  Too busy for social pleasantries. Too busy for courtesy.  Too busy to pay attention to the road before us. What is being missed is life.

Having lived outside of my hometown for now going on 19 years, I look back and can see both great changes and great strides.  Some good, some not so good and some bad.

When we first moved here driver's terrified the mess out of me. Now, I see people taking risks with vehicles that are innately stupid.  Yet my heartbeat doesn't even flinch at what I see. 

Impatience.  Irreverence.  Lack of any form of moral responsibility or integrity.
People rushing and if asked, they don't know why.  Oh they have to go here, they have to be there.  If their kids aren't here on time then this happens.  If I am late then that happens.  Never mind the fact that they left the house late. So they push it on the interstate. 

Zero patience.  People driving 10 to 20 mph above the speed limit.  Police looking the other way it seems...since they aren't out ticketing people. 

What comes from this is a lack of mercy. People getting frustrated or raging at others.  I admit there's times when their behavior affects me.  I always try to leave early enough to be early.  But I do this among people who are not.

The drive to be ahead of others.  Running red lights.  Pushes people to do what's sort of obvious.  They aren't thinking.  Which I believe is the grand tactic of Satan.  Keep people from thinking or having the time to consider things and then they won't know what hit them.
An interesting notion considering most so-called magic is slight of hand.  Moving quickly before your brain registers what has just happened.  Exactly Satan's motive.  He knows if people who are believers or could be believers had time to think or consider the truth, they wouldn't be the same.

No mercy, no integrity. Not showing love for one another. Not showing kindness. Impatience.  All sounds familiar doesn't it? Well if you have ever read the Bible you might have run across it.  This society in which we live is no accident.  It's intentional.  It's happening on purpose.
Why? To accomplish 2 things. One is what drove Jesus to ask "When the Son of Man returns will He find the faith?"  The other is a very apt and exact description of our society right before Jesus does return.

2 Timothy 3:2-4 " For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, 
disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,"

Time is running out on all of those in this world.  Time to live as Christ intended for those who believe. Time to choose life in Christ for those who haven't yet. 

Time is running out.  I am one looking forward to Christ's return.  My heart and soul say it's soon. What's interesting to me is how much I am backing away from the busyness of life in a big city. I don't care for it anymore. Not for sports or science fiction.  Not for even building things of wood. My joy comes from time with Jesus.  My joy is seeing things He teaches me. My joy is that soon I will be with Him.  We have seen these posts if "Could you spend a month in this cabin without the internet or a cell phone?" Yes I can.  The faster the world goes the slower I want to be. As George Strait wrote in a song "I saw God today."  Will you see Him today? That's a twofold question. 

If you are not being called out of this world yet. Look for Jesus.  He's here. Right now. He wants back into your life if you're one of those too busy people.  If you're undecided about Salvation, He's waiting at the door of your heart. 

Let go of the busyness of the moment and find the true friend that has been waiting patiently for time with you. 

Don't be worked up about who is or isn't doing this or that. Remember the story of Mary and Martha. Those who stop to take in time with Jesus will not have that taken away. There are no real problems, only opportunities to see Jesus at work.  It's something that I am learning. In our own strength, frustration mounts. It brings forth anger. It brings forth the worst in us. For Children of God it's not our fight.  In our own strength we will fail. Without God, you will fail.  The victory that overcomes the world is found only in Christ. 

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Don't Need to Imagine

By now most everyone has probably heard "I Can Only Imagine".  Like many millions this song, no pun intended, strikes a chord with me. 

What's difficult to explain, let alone put into words, is my own experience. When I was barely a toddler, I had surgeries on my eyes to correct being born cross eyed.  Go now to "Heaven is for Real". In the back of that book is a photo and a story of another child who also has seen Jesus.

In some respects, the three stories all come together for me.  When I had those surgeries, I don't remember much beyond the terrifying feeling of not understanding what was happening or what was going to be done to me.

But in those moments when I was beyond what my little mind could tolerate I remember being with Jesus.  The man that the little girl painted is who I was with.  I know that face.

There are moments in my life when I can think back, a deep longing comes over me. To go back.  I really want to be with Jesus again.  I long to have Him hold me again. 

I know in that experience that Jesus is more real to me than anything else.  I know He is coming back soon. My excitement grows.

So does the need to share what I do on my blog and on here.  Jesus has open arms for all who would come to Him to be saved.  No fears of what you have done in this life should stop you.  He already knows.  He knew before you were born. 

Liken it more to an adoption as described in the early New Testament times.  When someone of high position adopted someone, two ceremonies took place.  A private one and a public one. Once consummated the law said it couldn't be broken. In public, before officials, old garments were removed from the adoptee. The one adopting would then place new garments on them to show all that their status has changed.

The same goes with coming to Christ. Matters not what was done before adoption, your old life is gone, a new one in Christ is given.  Your status before God the Father in Heaven has now changed.

The love of Jesus that I felt over 50 years ago still resonates within me today.  He is for real...come to Jesus today and you won't need to imagine a life with Christ. It will be real for you too.

Much...and Rich

In the preparation of food, volume of it and it's consistency are what sets it apart from either sustaining a person joyfully or gorging themselves without regard.

The difference between "I don't care, I am hungry!" and "Oh what a delicious meal!"
Actually some are in between, eating only just because.

But now...remember what it is about food. If done right, it is indeed a delicious delight.  If not, well, it might do but would hardly be a delight.

Some conisuers would argue it's more in the pace you eat. Not what you eat.
That the richest of foods could be enjoyed in severe moderation. 

Some unknowingly look at learning from God the same way as looking at food. They just don't realize it. 

God's idea of learning will be at a pace you can understand.  Your ability to learn will grow as you grow.  It will lessen as you slacken your attention to it.  Indeed God sees where you are in your life. Every second of it.

The Scriptures are replete with examples of growth in people.  Seeing many from beginning to end.  I had a part of a passage in my mind this morning.  About a tree firmly planted by the waters.

A tree...a very awesome plant when you consider all it goes through.
Planted...put where God wanted it.'s location intentional.
Waters...that which is from God that sustains.

Used to be in schools, that you were shown a cross section of a tree. The outermost part, the bark. That section that bears the brunt of exposure to the elements of life. The growth rings.  The parts of its life that lived through the hard times and good times. The heart of it all. Where the rest is sustained.  The roots, where nourishment arrives from nutrients in the soil as well as water. The branches that show the world the goodness that God has granted.  Basking in the life giving warmth of the sun.  A tree in a bright sunny day looks beautiful but doesn't tell you it's story.

Doesn't tell you of all the storms that came against it, causing cracks, scars.
The times when it thought the end was near because it couldn't take another hit, couldn't take another blow.

But look again.  It's because of what it went through,  where it received life, it became something much much greater than what it ever could on its own.

Its existence is rich, and full when it is where it's supposed to be.  It absorbs whatever is found in the soil. A tree can even absorb iron deposits.

The life giving power in the Scriptures is like rich, fine food. It's also the best soil. It's your guide to life. It's not a swiss army knife.  It's THE Swiss Army knife.
In it you will not only find the perfect food for the day, but find the utensils to take it in.

The right portions for you.

It's easy to overeat. It's certainly not difficult.  Reading your Bible at your pace, a good pace, is what's right for you.  Just make sure you ARE in it daily.  A tree firmly planted will only grow as long as a continuous supply feeds it. A tree dies either by something invading it that doesn't belong in its life, or by its roots no longer doing their job. A lack of sun, a lack of water.  Alone or a combination will spell doom for a tree.  Scripture has something to say on that for us, when the worries of this life get ahold of us, we take our eyes off the one who sustains us.

We are indeed trees in one respect.  We need sustained by our Creator.  We cannot take a breath apart from what He provides.

His love for us is far from that of a tree. But His love covers even that tree. God created them too...and before the fall of man, God saw His creation was good.

You have to eat, to be in the Word of God.
A person can't very well say they know what God wants of them if they are not in it.  I am not hungry is a bad sign for someone saying they are a Christian.  It's too rich for me is also a bad sign.  Take small steps but indeed take the steps.
When we are sick, often we don't feel like eating.  But our bodies still need to be sustained.  Small bites are better than none.

Read, eat, enjoy.  Bring new life to your body.  See what Jesus wrote in His love letter to you.

THE Journey

While on a journey, things inveritably happen. Sometimes you are just going along and not paying too much attention to where you are walking and down you go.  Then you find yourself massaging an ankle.  After a time you get up and begin to hobble, needing to keep going. You now find yourself not holding the world around you with the same regard. Your ankle has your attention.  Your path has your focus upon it.  The journey has to continue. More rest stops but when you look back over your shoulder you realize what you missed.  Some good things and others not so much. You see where a danger was avoided and you are relieved.  Time to get back up. You move on. The journey has to continue. It's life. Reba MacIntyre had a song quite a while ago with a line in it about how the world didn't stop for her broken heart.  We are all on our own journey called life. It all depends on if we have light to see by or we don't. The only light in this life is Jesus. In the book of John He is called the Light. We can only have an idea of what the Psalmist describes in Psalm 23 because of the light.  You have no awareness of dangers you cannot see.  Praying before a day starts is asking for the light to go before you.  Keeping a focus on that Light is what leads you on. Shows you the way. Makes you aware of your surroundings. Lets you ask Jesus for the help you need because of the Light He provides. I refer to Spiritual matters.  All physical life is impacted by what goes on in the Spiritual realm.  Jesus's coming to earth, His life and ministry, His death, burial and resurrection. All were because of what needed to happen between the Physical world and the Spiritual.  To make a way.  Our situations and circumstances, if you are a believer, are part of the process to grow you Spiritually. It may be joyous some times, it may hurt to all get out other times. But if we accept the Bible as Truth,  then we have to accept what it says about our life. God causes all things to work together for good to those who are called according to His purpose.  Romans. We are His workmanship. Philippians.  He will never leave us or forsake us. The promises go on. If you have stumbled and fell, take a breath, rest a moment, get back up.  Pray, and move on.  Life isn't going to stop. Not until we are at the point that our growth on earth is at the best it can be and God calls us home. As I mentioned a few other times. I  went through some very painful things early  last year. I was on the ground. Had lost sight of the Light. God took that and set me back on my feet and lit the way. The Spiritual surgeries at that time hurt. But I am grateful for them. Letting go of physical baggage to lay ahold of Spiritual treasures. If you find yourself on the ground.  Stop, breathe. Pray. Just obey and do what Jesus is telling you. It probably is going to hurt. But He will see you through. This world is temporary. He is eternal. He loves us too much to leave us to fend for ourselves. Keep your eyes on His Light. In His Word, obeying His Voice.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Constantly Amazed, May I Never Stop

I am constantly amazed at each day that I face. One, that I am still here, the next being that yet again Jesus brings something else to write.  I look back since the end of March and am in awe. The things that God has brought to my mind.

I am no scholar. Never went to a seminary.  What I know of the Bible comes from the men of God whom I sat under.  In their sermons and their teachings.  Pastor Mike Wingfield, Pastor Jeff Brown, Dr. Herman Hoyt, Dr. Boyer. Dr. John C. Whitcomb to name a few.
The rest is from daily reading and asking God to show me more.

Show me more. I guess that's taking faith to a new level.  To not only believe in the Bible, but to ask the living authority on it to explain more of it to me.  Connect the dots, if you will.  What most people miss is that I can tell He enjoys it!

I made a commitment to meet with Jesus in the morning.  Even at the expense of sleep.  I read devotionals that He has brought to me.  I read a section or so of the Bible that has going to read through it in a year. 

Then the amazing happens.  These words begin to flow.  Today's devotionals covered a few things that made Scripture clearer.  Solomon's Temple was built with no physical tools on site.  Everything was chiseled or hewn or hammered off site. Where the material was. Then transported and everything fit.

What made this reading stand out was that is an excellent description of our lives as Christians before leaving this world.  All the work of Sanctification will be complete before we set foot in Heaven. The piece we are in God's Temple up there will have us fitting perfectly upon arrival.  That's how Spurgeon wrote it for today. 

Did that rock in the quarry being chiseled know how it was going to fit in the Temple?  No.
Did that beam of cedar? No.

Will you see how you fit into God's Plan? Likely no. We will never see the ramifications of all He has done this side of Heaven.  Amazing.

Another devotional was about Spiritual markers.  Writing down the things in your life where you KNEW it was God.  What lead up to that marker. What the marker was and what came next. 

So that when you faced new things you have something to look back on to strengthen your faith.  I can't write well at all so I type.  All these posts to this blog, save one, were tapped out on my phone.
If you can text, you can keep a Journal.
If you need suggestions, ask me. I use 3.

Stop your crazy life and breathe.
Things appearing to not go the way you planned? Maybe it's because those weren't God's plans.  This broke and that didn't go right, this happened, there they go again.  Well some of that might be Spiritual in nature. Some just may be that anything man made will break. It's royally annoying and inconvenient, but things break.
Life isn't about you. If you are a Christian, it's about Christ in you.  It is you being worked on in the quarry or the forest.  Being made ready for Heaven.  Being sanctified.  Sometimes the best way to deal with what you experience is to put on the brakes, be still and tell God what's on your mind and heart.  He knows what it means to take up your cross.  He did it.
He knows betrayal. It happened to Him. He knows what it means to be the one suffering and see your family helpless to do anything but be near you. He knows frustration.  He knows what it means to be vilified and violated.  He was stripped down and beaten.  He was humiliated before a nation.  He went through every single emotion you can come up with.
Yet was without sin. 

You are not alone.  He will always be with you.  I have called the things He does with me Spiritual surgeries.  It is indeed work in the forest or the quarry.  Work on the potter's wheel.  Do some to the masterpiece then let it rest. Let it sink in.

The masterpiece cannot know what it is going to look like in the Master's hands until the Master says of them "It is Finished!".

So write down what God's doing in your life.  Be willing to open up before Him.  Be amazed when you see Him working.  Ask for more.

May you never cease to be amazed too.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Listening is often More powerful than Speaking

“Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord God, “that I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord.” Amos 8:11

I know this passage is to do with Israel.  But if you look it can apply to people as well.  Israel, even today, is is rich as many nations 10x her size, but hearing from the Lord seems to be missing.

In our lives we can do the same thing in our prayer times.  We have a prayer list, prayer book, some may even have a prayer spreadsheet.  We open in prayer and do all the talking.  We get up and go.

Growing up, I had some really interesting family members.  One such was Pappy.  He was born in 1901.  Lived through the years before cars. Before trucks. Before paved roads. Before radio. Before TV. Lived through the Great Depression.  Lived through the years of WWI, WWII, the Korean War and Vietnam. The people he met in his life, the experiences.  How do I know such things about him?  I was encouraged to go talk to him and listen.

There's a whole lot that Jesus wants to say TO us if we would but stop and listen.

Some actually think it odd to hear Jesus speak to people.  Well look at it from another direction. Why wouldn't He?

Why would He be silent? His love for you is beyond imagination.  His careful crafting of truth into your life is more intricate that anything a diamond cutter can come up with.

Yesterday on my way to work, was talking out loud in the car to Jesus.  It's a rainy morning.  Had been sharing what was on my heart.  I get up to the next to last traffic light before getting onto 270 and right in front of me is a semi with a cross painted on the back door as big as the door.  Follow the cross.  Was the message.  Stick to what you have learned. I will get the rest. Things will work out.

We live in an ever increasing impatient world.  We have to have video game systems so fast that instantly isn't fast enough for reaction time.  We have intersections redesigned because people are too distracted to use a stop sign or stop light properly.  We have people intentionally driving 20 miles over the speed limit and aren't being stopped by police.  We have newspapers going the way of the dinosaur because paper print is too slow of a delivery.  We see news on TV and by the time they start mentioning what it is, the news reports on your phone are calling it old news. 

You go into a mall, a store anywhere.  People have something in their ears to either drown out the world or to carry on a conversation.

Used to be going to a store just meant getting what you needed and leaving.  Now stores compete to get you on your phone or to get you off it in order to coax another purchase out of you.

Society is ever accelerating. Yet soon it will come to a screeching halt. More on that later.

Right now...add listening time to your prayer time.  Quite often my heart has things to say that I don't have words for.  That's the Holy Spirit's job to bring that before Jesus. 

Slow down your life to have a true conversation with Jesus.  Not a grocery list.  Jesus isn't like the Genie in the lamp.  He is the lamb who took away the sins of the world.  He died and arose again for you. Would it honestly kill you to stop and respect that?  To listen to what He has to say to you? 

It's interesting that most vacations are about jumping out of life to experience something new.  You can do that today without the vacation.  Do something new with Jesus.  My Pappy knew some very interesting people that I learned about in school.  Jesus did more than that. He knows everyone.  He can explain things about you that even you don't know.

In my life listening isn't something I excel at.  Ask my Wife.  I have to write things down in moderate detail to remember why I wrote it down.  A name and phone number on a Post-it isn't enough.  I need to write a small biography to remember who it belongs to.

So try it today.  And hey, if you have older relatives still in your life.  Go talk to them about what they have lived through and have seen.  It will teach you more than any school.  It will teach you about life.

Stop, Pray and Listen.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

A month to remember

What shall we say then?

I saw several things in this past month that should have caused worry, should have caused grief.  Should have caused despair.  Beloved pets dying after a ray of hope at treatment.  Vehicle problems across 3 vehicle's in 18 months, added another month to that.  Time constraints that are building.  Work loads that keep shifting. A stove that's acting up.  As I have told many, this month of June is by far the most complex that I can remember. Note how I worded that. Complex, not troublesome or problematic.

But no where in it have I felt that Jesus ever abandoned me. Rather the opposite, it's shown me that just like He was in the boat with the Disciples in the storm...He's right there with me.

It's rough for sure.  Oh yes it's been rough. I guess if I really look at things and how I reacted, God most assuredly has been working in my life.  I haven't reacted like I used to. No blow ups.  No lashing out in anger at inanimate objects. No crying in frustration although there has been a few tears.

What I am trying to do is just to stand and wait to see how He is going to deal with these issues.  Doing what He's giving me to do.

By no means am I saying that I have arrived in my Spiritual walk.  By no means am I saying that.  Inside me it's a struggle.  I really do want positive results right away,  but God's still saying Hold will work out.

Delays are the fastest way to see how far that you have come in your walk with God.  How you deal with delays is as important as how you deal with joy.

I don't sense that God is saying no to fixing what's been wrong.  He's saying hold on.

Nobody likes being attacked.  But often times that's what it feels like.  Even if it's nothing huge, like a fist to the gut. Constant jabs are the same.  Constant pokes are the same.  Constant behavior can be the same.

But as Scripture shows...nothing in a believers life ever gets TO a believer that isn't permitted by God. Every created being, including Satan, especially Satan, has to get permission to do anything to any believer in Jesus Christ.

I sigh, I sometimes weep inside, but my God knows.  I face disappointment, or disappointing others by the choices that I have made.  There's no denying that there are times that I cry out to God.  Or simply that I cry in His presence.  Because I don't know what words to say.  But as the Psalmist has said my trust is in the Lord.
My help will come from Him.

This post is perhaps more about sharing what June has been like and what God's doing in our lives. There's no profit in being anxious or impatient.  Especially in a world that excels at it.  Being different in a world like that will probably make you stand out.  Will maybe make someone ask why can you be this way when all this is happening?  There's your opportunity.

I go to bed tired and often wake up the same, but I know that my God is with me.
It's up to me to do what He puts before me.  God's got a Plan.  And things always work out according to it. I just need to breathe and do what's mine to do.  No where in Scripture does it say that God will always explain Why.  Job didn't know until after he died....decades later after all that you read about.

Sometimes part of faith must be to just believe and do. We may never know the why.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

In a moment...

"Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality. But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Corinthians 15:50-57

People in many places are not alone in the thought that 'Oh, I've got time.  I want to live a little more before coming to Jesus.'  Or 'What's the hurry?'

Look at what that verse says. In the twinkling of an eye.  How fast is that?  Off hand I would have to say it's right up there with the speed of thought.

When the date appointed by the Father arrives.  When that very hour, very minute, very second arrives. You will not have a moment or even a second to decide.

There's nothing in this world that is more important than knowing where you will spend eternity.


Your fears of what you will have to 'give up' are all mere foolishness. 

Your being afraid to 'lose out' on what you see the world calling 'fun' is a lie.

That's the pack of lies that Satan wants you to believe. 

What's interesting is in various stories Jesus told that same mindset was woven into it. 

People were not taking Him seriously. 

"Let me go bury my dead, then I will..."
"I just bought..."
"I need to..."

When the things in your life are more important than the real decision in front of you, then you need new priorities.

Every life in motion on this planet is facing their excuses for not coming to Christ or in the giving up of their excuses and are coming to Christ.  It isn't about the having the best of this or that. It's not about health or wealth. It has nothing to do with speaking in tongues or miracles even.

Scripture says every man will be without excuse.  Which means if you haven't decided by now whether or not to come to Christ, that choice is still in front of you.  It's not going least not yet.

Brushing it aside isn't going to get you anywhere.  You have a limited amount of time to live this life.  Most everyone who died yesterday thought they had a 'today'.

You probably think you have a 'today'.

The truth is we were not promised a today.

As that opening passage eludes the twinkling of an eye everything can and will change. 

I promise you, that if you still balk at coming to Christ, and you are still here when that moment comes and countless millions disappear, your priorities will indeed change.

You won't care about your cars or vacation spots.  You won't care about your clothes or what to do at work.

You will be truly scared. Because you didn't take Jesus seriously and were left behind. 

Jesus is offering not just a 'get out of Hell free card'. He is offering a relationship with God that is beyond anything we can imagine. He is offering to heal you from the inside out.  He is offering more love that your heart knows what to do with.
He is offering you Himself.

He took your place on Calvary.
But as you stand and look at that cross, if you dismiss it and walk away, it's all on you. Many billions will try excuses and will fail.  Many billions will be angry at God because they feel they were good enough.

The owner of the property has the exclusive right to determine who may enter.  That owner of Heaven is Jesus Christ.  His requirements for entry are not complicated. 

Without Jesus there is no getting in.

So think today, right here, right now. What is holding you back?

You may not have another day, let alone another 10 minutes.  Are your reasons worth spending an eternity apart from God worth it?

I implore you to give it up.
Whatever is holding you back, give it up.

I have never regretted coming to Jesus.
I haven't missed out on living life.

Even in typing it out I don't have enough space to tell you everything that He has helped me live through. 

I have a place reserved for me in Heaven.

Do you?  Look up Romans Road. 

Choose Jesus today and really begin to live.  That twinkling of an eye is going to come quicker than you think.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

People who are against You

 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." Matthew 5:43-48

I have seen much in observing people.  In observing myself for that matter.  I my life I have not seen as much as others have.  Perhaps I might say that as we draw nearer to Christ's return that I have seen a degree of evil not seen since before the Genesis flood.

But in respect to people...a quote that I have heard "hate the sin, not the sinner" perhaps finds its roots in this passage. 

Many around you who are unbelievers will find ways to irritate you, to do things to you. To say things about you.  All of which might not be true.  How you react is what shows who is indeed inside of you. 

In another passage it says that where it be possible, be at peace with all men.  Doesn't say it will always be possible.  

This world will always be against what God stands for.  It's never going to become some enlightened society without God. 

Scripture says also that a man's enemies will be members of his own household.  Yes. That deep. 

The part that is on us is to still be Christ before them. 

The copout is for people who want to use "you shouldn't judge".  That's not at all what that passage is about.  We are indeed to be fruit inspectors. Scripture says we will know people by their fruits.  Now how in the world do you evaluate fruits without making a judgment be it good or bad? 

What we are NOT to do is condemn people as a hopeless lost cause. That is our judging people as unworthy of Salvation in Christ Jesus. THAT is the true meaning of what not judging is about.  It's not up to us to decide who is or isn't worthy of Salvation. 

Praying for those around us will certainly keep us busy enough.  Praying for our leaders is a commandment too. Right up there with praying for those who persecute us. 

So don't dig yourself a hole in the sand when strife comes from people around you. Don't look for reasons to despise people.  Don't sit and argue with people trapped in sin.  It only makes both of you look foolish.  Pray for them. The Holy Spirit can go where you cannot. He can blow right past their defenses straight to their hearts.  Many a sinner was saved right before death.  The thief on the cross was the first. 

Don't let it get you down either. The Apostles praised God after the rough time they had with Jewish leaders.  If you take their treatment of you personally it will cripple you. Turn it over to God. 

If a man's enemies will be members of his own house, it goes deep.  It's very personal.  But even more personal is who died for you.  Even more personal is those who were put around you at this very moment in time who need to see Jesus. Jesus didn't condemn the woman caught in adultary. He told her to go and sin no more.  We can do the same. He evaluated the fruit of her life and determined the right thing to say and do.

Jesus said that in this world we would have tribulations, but to be of good cheer, for He has overcome the world.  Let the disappointment pass.  Plant a seed with the Holy Spirit. What do you think originally happened with you?

Your sins were just as great as that person whose treating you like they are. Someone planted a seed from the Holy Spirit in you and He caused it to grow in you. 

Christ will come back when the last person who is to be saved is saved.  I believe it will be like it began. The thief on the cross wasn't baptized. Never had communion. Never was able to be discipled before his death.  Jesus said that today he would be with Him in paradise.  

Don't expect paradise in this world. Man made things break.  People disagree and disappoint.  Keep your eyes on Jesus. Make the most of every opportunity. 

Jesus is right there with you. 

Monday, June 17, 2019

It isn't enough...

I read and saw many people who are Christians or proclaimed to be who went out to the so-called pride events in Columbus. 

I understood why they did, but unlike Peter in the book of Acts, why didn't they tell these people the rest of it?

It's a most horrible feeling knowing that YOU could have saved someone from some horrific incident and to later find out that your information could have saved them.  Try really considering that when dealing with these types of people:
"Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor thecovetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God" 1 Corinthians 6:9-10.

You know. You know it isn't enough to show them Jesus.  They need to turn and repent as well. 

Read Acts 3:17-20, it's the very same scenario:

“And now, brethren, I know that you acted in ignorance, just as your rulers did also.  But the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled.  Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you,"

Consider what was written there.  It would be like finding someone drowning, and rather than helping them out of the water we shake their hands and tell them that God loves them, and to have a great day.

It's the same thing!

To those living in sin, the truth of God HURTS.  They want to be right in their own eyes.  Guess what, that's exactly how it was in the days of Noah. Read it. It's there in the record in Genesis. Every single person who lived in that 100 years is now without excuse before a Holy God.

Noah tried for a hundred years to reach anyone.  Even knowing he would fail, the failure wasn't his.  It was on all those who mocked him and ridiculed him for what he was saying and doing.  He didn't fail. They failed to believe that God wasn't kidding.

In the news today celebrities, politicians and so-called government leaders on all levels are mocking and harassing Christians and or Christian companies.  Boycotting states where they took a stand for the life of the unborn baby.  Think about that. Consider the judgment that WILL come upon the United States because of the states who passed legislation to legally murder their own children.  Lethal injection in those states is illegal but using the same chemical weapons to murder children in the womb is ok.

Christian need to be praying for our leaders.  Scripture says we should be. It's entirely why our Government is the way it is because there are way too many NOT praying.

Don't stop at loving on those who are perishing.  But also don't shut up when it comes to showing them they need to turn around and repent.  "You're heading for a cliff, but it's ok, Jesus loves you!" Somehow doesn't cut it.  How many millions are in torment in Hell who had someone ONLY love on them but never showed them they needed to turn and repent?  Granted only God knows who will say yes and who won't, but in the land of the living, it's up to us to not just love on people as Christ did but to also show them how to be saved.

Jesus's own example with the woman caught in adultary. He didn't just show compassion with her, He also said to go and sin no more.  She needed to see that where she was she shouldn't be and needed to turn around and repent.

So consider your words and actions.  I liken it to something Franklin Graham said concerning a politician, some day that man will stand before the Author of Life and have to explain WHY he signed a law to fully be able to murder babies.

I know there are many why moments in my life to have to explain myself.  Minimize those moments.  Love people but love them enough to get them to see they are drowning.  Show them the way to repentance so that they too can be saved.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

In a Second You will know...

For a hundred years Noah built an Ark in the middle of a great expanse of land.  God told him what to do and why God was doing it.

The world already was more wicked than at any point up til then in human history.
The only people found righteous were Noah, his wife, his sons and their wives.

So what did they experience for a hundred years?  Noah tried and tried for that hundred years to reach someone, anyone.  Who knows? Maybe someone might turn and repent. Although nobody did, was there anything accomplished by preaching for a hundred years?

Yes, there was. Noah and his immediate family were changed.  At least one was not changed for the better, but they were indeed changed.  Look to Jacob and Esau.  God shows that when Jacob prayed for the problems with his brother, that He changed them both.  Both were brought more inline with what God wants.

Look at Nehemiah, the death threats, the plots, the ambushes that were tried in order to prevent the remnant from rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem.  Satan isn't creative.  He used these same tactics before. Noah faced them.

Scripture says that every man will be without excuse.  No man or woman will have any defense before the sinless Savior of the world. 

Do you think that what you face is unique to you?  Satan would like you to think so.
He badgers and tempts and twists thoughts and thinking to get both believers in Christ as well as unbelievers.

The evidence of a global flood is everywhere.  Scientists try oh so hard to try to give some other explanation.  But there is none.  God gave a promise in the Rainbow.  Satan twisted that to be a symbol of the very thing that caused the flood in the first place.  I believe if sexual sins indeed what people won't repent of in Revelation, it's the same as what it was in Genesis.  Look at one of Noah's sons. He sexually violated his own Father.  He was cursed for doing so.  The evil of those pre-flood had reared its ugly head again.

Look at today's world.  Sexual sins are rampant.  It's history repeating itself.

Here's your truth...

At the very second of your death, you will see the absolute truth about Jesus.

If you choose a life without Christ now, in that second you will crave it. When your eyes open up for the first time in torment in Hell, you will crave a second chance. You will crave a chance to tell those you left behind to not do as you did.

If indeed you did choose Jesus to save you, in that second you will find yourself in His presence.  Facing your Savior. Welcomed to Heaven.

The most important second of your life any of them before you die.  People make a big deal about celebrities.  Here's some news for you.  People like Stephen Hawking.  If he never accepted Christ as his personal Savior, his first second after death was to have the ability to shock and horror at where he was and the truth of his existence.  To wake up in Hell.

Death is the equalizer of all mankind. The sentence of death due to the sin of Adam and Eve is on us all.  The only solution to it was for a perfect sacrifice.  Jesus was that perfect sacrifice.  Nobody else would do.  Our own good deeds of life don't even register on the scale compared to ONE sin let alone the countless billions we commit or have committed.  Forgiveness of sins, the wiping away of them all is only possible through Christ. 

Is your rights, your behavior, your lifestyle without Jesus worth it?  Is being right in your own eyes worth going to Hell for?
Is it worth an eternity in torment?   Is it?

Truth's what is coming for you if you die without knowing Jesus as your Savior and Lord.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Death is the Reminder....

"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6:23

"for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”" Romans 10:13

"Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God."  1 Corinthians 6:9-10

"Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.  Galatians 6:7-8

As you read through these passages...bear in mind that we live in a world that's increasingly getting more and more hostile towards God.  What God values, the world hates.

It's not an accepted thing to be taking a stand for Christ.  Bakers, and others in the workplace are under fire for standing up for Christian Values.  It's only going to get worse.  The very people who cry out for inclusion and diversity are against Christianity.  Why?  Read it again for yourselves.

People are deceived.  They are so deep in deception that they are even teaching that deception to others.  It's appearing in children's shows on TV.  It's being included in school curriculum's. Children being forced to learn about homosexuality.  Being forced to learn Muslim prayer practices. Yet these same children are denied being able to learn about Christ.

Look in Romans 6, verses 1 and 2 "What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?"  People who call themselves Christians should not be deliberately sinning. In the same respect those who intentionally sin in their lifestyle are guilty as well.  God puts homosexuality in the same category as idolatry, thieves, and drunkards.  Re-read 1 Corinthians 6 above. People who intentionally are sinning and are shaking their fists at God, demanding that HE change because THEY never will...are who are populating Hell right now.

I had read a quote recently, "There is nobody in Heaven that went there unwillingly.  Likewise, there's nobody in Hell that didn't go there willingly."

Consider that. Look at what Jesus Himself said Hell was like.  It's full of people who are begging to have someone sent back to the land of the living, to convince their friends and family to NOT make THEIR mistake!

Am I being homophobic in all this?  By no means.  I am only sharing what I'm being told to share.  I am sharing God's truth.  Satan is a liar and the father of lies, as Jesus has said.  He's the great deceiver.

In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve were indeed deceived, and sin was the result.  The result was a judgement of death.

Every man and woman is born into sin.  There's no escaping it on their own.  It's literally in their DNA. God has said in Romans 6:23 that there's a penalty for sin. But thank God that's not the end.  Look at Romans 10:13.  Those who call upon Jesus for salvation WILL be saved.  Their sins washed away.  Remembered no more.  The penalty was paid for by Christ on the cross.  You cannot save you.  Your own works are still but filthy rags.  Nothing at all can be done by anyone even if they had 1000 times what people like Billy Graham had for faith.  Nothing.  If it were possible then, as Scripture says, then Christ died needlessly.
I also am not sitting here bashing those listed in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10.  I tell you that you should be the Christ example to those people.  Love them as Christ did, but do not condone their lifestyle.   I have heard another saying "hate the sin, not the sinner".

Do not go on marches with them.  Do not go to protests with them.  That is not showing them the love of Christ.

That's telling them it's ok.  Which the Scripture clearly says it is not.

Love them enough to pray for them.  Love them enough to let them see Jesus in you.  Our world is being prepared for the end of all things.   We will likely see the return of Jesus very soon.  It says in Revelation that people will not repent of their sexual sins.   God's judgement is coming.  The true Church will not be here.  Those who have not chosen Christ will indeed still be here.  Read the judgments in Revelation for yourself. 

Jesus loved YOU enough to die on a cross for you.  Our lives as Christians should be to show Jesus to others.

If you haven't chosen Jesus yet....remember He STILL died on a cross for you.  Is what you are doing in your life worth going to Hell for?  Is it?  Because without Christ, you ARE going to Hell.  It is NO party there.

“Now there was a rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, joyously living in splendor every day. And a poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores,  and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man’s table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores.  Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried.  In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom.  And he cried out and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame.’  But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your life you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus bad things; but now he is being comforted here, and you are in agony.  And besides all this, between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us.’  And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, that you send him to my father’s house—  for I have five brothers—in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’  But Abraham *said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’  But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’  But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”  Luke 16:19-31

Sound like a party to you?   Consider your ways today.  If there's a sin in your life that you're not letting go of.  Why?

If your life is apart from Christ, why?

I refuse to be one in a lifeboat with the knowledge of how to save someone, and not share it with them.

Pray for those who persecute you, is what the Bible says.  Are you?

Death is the reminder of that penalty of sin.  Everyone faces it.  Everyone.  Nobody escapes the sentence of death.

Only those who put their faith and trust in Christ can have that sentence removed.  He paid the penalty.  He died so that you may live. But it didn't end there. He arose from the dead.  He not only died, but he conquered death.  It could not keep Him in the ground.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Knowing how...

Delight yourself in the Lord;
And He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalms 37:4

In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to Hispurpose. Romans 8:26-28

We know not how to pray...and it's ok!
Praying? You mean talking to God?
Outloud?  Yes. But in many cases praying in silence.  Intimidating? Afraid to? Never have before?

I was writing this blog a moment ago and evidently God had changed His mind and it crashed. So we write it a bit differently.

The verses remained lol. 

In recent years we have seen many many answers to prayer.  Jesus taught His Disciples how to pray.  Gave them a template...but not something to be mindlessly repeated.  That's where the Jewish leaders blew it.  Droning off big words and sayings that meant nothing.

Jesus knows your heart. 

He knows your pain and heartaches.

He knows what lead up to that sin you gave into.  Yes even that.

But more importantly like the opening's ok to not know exactly what to say or how to say it.  We have the Holy Spirit within us, for those who are saved.   He understands everything about us. He gets it. 

Praying is a conversation from our soul to God's Throne.  Nobody in between.  No mediator. 

How does the second passage tie into the first?  Prayer and where your heart is.

After the ascension of Jesus to Heaven,  the Spirit came down upon those who believed.  The Apostles were the first but soon it spread.  All who believed in Jesus received the Holy Spirit. 

When our hearts are inline with what God wants, amazing things happen. 

I will never state that I have arrived at being a mature Christian.  As long as I exist I am a work in progress.

But when your life reflects what God's desire for it can see where He gives you opportunities you never dreamed possible. 

Many years ago my work life pushed the extremes of stressful.  I even had a nervous breakdown.  God provided several months of time off from needing to work in order to begin the healing process.  My return to working at all began with learning something new. Which I really do like doing.  It was a small business and over the course of 5 years He brought me back around to where I had left. 6 employers later.

Praying is what connects the years of healing and struggles.  Prayer is what changed my heart.  There were a few times when I thought my heart was ripped in two.  But the truth is I was in need of Spiritual surgery.  God had to take out some things in me to give the right parts of me room to grow 

I am indeed back where the breakdown occurred.  To say it's been an easy transition would be a lie.  6 months later it's gotten better.  At first I kept wondering if so-and-so would come around the corner to yell at me. But the problem people are all long gone.  Prayer did it.
Prayer and putting my faith where my mouth is.  Reprioritizing.  This blog. A Facebook group for Men of God.  Time every day in God's Word.  Learning more through devotionals.  It a process. 

Now there's where Spiritual learning differs from the world.  It's a process.

It isn't going to happen in 4 minutes in a microwave.  It isn't a push of a button and 2 minutes later you have a cup of coffee.

Most spend 12 or so years in school.  If you are ambitious then maybe college.  But learning about God's Word you will spend eternity going over and still find something new you haven't seen before.

Prayer isn't a grocery list.  Jesus had issues with the Jewish leaders who mindlessly repeated big words or prayers that really meant nothing to the person saying them.  It's personal. 

Realize that when you pray, Jesus shows up. Every time, every place, every moment of every day.  You stop and pray, He is there. He comes to you.

So have a conversation.  Which, by its definition, is a two way deal.  Talking and listening.  If you don't know what to say it's ok.  Like that passage from Romans.  We don't need to know how to word it.

But also realize that same Spirit within you knows if you are intentionally holding onto a sin that you won't let go of.

You want Jesus to hear you, you have to let go of that. It becomes a barrier between you and God.  So start your prayers with an admission of your sins, ask forgiveness, turn away from it whatever it is.  Stay away from whatever it was. The power of the Cross is within you. You have the ability to stay away from it.  Things might still happen but you will learn how to rely more upon God to deal with it.

There is much joy to be had in a life that delights in the Lord.  It begins with prayer and obedience. 

The answers we have seen are beyond my comprehension at times.  I just can't wrap my head around how God is doing it but I know He is the one doing it.

So pray today.  Talk to Jesus today. 

He's waiting.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

What you do is Rubbish

Oh, how many there are who trust in their own good works and therefore cannot come to Christ! “I will not be saved,” they say, “in the same way as a prostitute or the profane. What? Go to heaven in the same way as a chimney sweep? Is there no pathway to glory but the one that led the thief there? I will not be saved that way.” Proud boasters will always go without the living water. But whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely. -C.H. Spurgeon

Paul considered himself the chief of all sinners.  An Apostle not worthy of being called one due to his persecution of the Church.  The man had authorization to put people in jail or worse!

But....God had other ideas. Thankfully so considering most of the New Testament came from his hand, as inspired by God.

I have heard from many that the first problem with everyone is some degree of pride.  Someone has an idea of what 'good' is and in reality it's them creating a standard of measurement to base their life upon. This person thinks in their heart that they aren't as bad as that person.  Well they don't do that, they are better than that other person.  Some are so bold as to tell people their standards of good. Others don't even see it as a standard other than they aren't doing bad things.

The truth of it the book of Romans  God says we are all sinners worthy of death.  Doesn't matter what kind of 'good' life we can live, it's rubbish.  We honestly could be greater than anyone we know in doing great things! But if we have not Salvation in Christ Jesus we have done nothing.  Getting warmed by the fire of others who are indeed saved will not save you. Going into a church building on Sundays will not save you.  Every single man and woman was born guilty.  We have a sin nature that negates every single good thing we could possibly do.

There's no partiality with Jesus on this. Either you receive His free gift of Salvation or you have not.   Those who have not,  will not enter Heaven.  Jesus was clear on that. He is the only way to Heaven. Nobody can ever enter any other way.  He was and is the only person who was and is worthy to open that door. Only those who are saved and have Christ in them can enter through that door.  In their case God the Father sees only Jesus entering when a believer is called home to Jesus. He doesn't see the sinful person who is there. He sees the forgiven and sealed person there.

It matters not if you have all the world's riches or have nothing at all.  Without Jesus as your Savior you will never enter Heaven.  Simple as that.

So what is holding you back?  I tell you the only one hindering you is you. 

But if I do that then I won't be able to...
But if I do that then i can't...

Really?  Considering that if God says it's your time to die, you want to hang onto something that is worth nothing in comparison to staying out of Hell?  That's door number two.  Hell.  No in between. No Purgatory. Nobody here able to pray you out of Hell.  If your sin is the same as everyone else's what makes you think they can pray you out of Hell when, if they aren't saved, are headed there too?  Even if they are saved in Christ, they have no means of getting you out of Hell.  The Bible says everyone is responsible for themselves in regards to sin. 

So there's hope.  Come to Christ. His arms are open.  He doesn't care what life you had up to now.  Today begins a new life for you if you say yes. A new life, stain free. No sin counted against you. A new Birthday if you will. Hope.  You will indeed be able to walk into Heaven and be received by Jesus.  It matters not the other people around you.  They too must face the same choice.  Only you can choose Jesus for you. Then any works you do after coming to Christ will amount to anything. 

Oh why delay?  Fear? Fear of what others think? I will tell you about true fear. True fear is what people in Hell are thinking when they realize where they are and that unless people they loved change, then they too will join them in torment.  That's true fear. They are in torment and it terrifies them to know that every day millions join them because they rejected Jesus.  Need to read that for yourself?
Need proof?  The words of Jesus:
Luke 16:19-31
"Now there was a rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, joyously living in splendor every day. And a poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores, and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man’s table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores. Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried. In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom.And he cried out and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus so that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool off my tongue, for I am in agony in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your life you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus bad things; but now he is being comforted here, and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, that you send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—in order that he may warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’ But Abraham *said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent!’ But he said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”

Is what you won't let go of worth it to you?

Let go of it and find Salvation in Jesus.

Soon you will find the peace you long for but have never been able to describe.

But if you don' just read a very real account of what's going on in Hell.
Even today there's evidence of people on their death bed, slowly dying, without Christ, slipping into Hell, crying out in pain from the heat. Yet they refuse to come to Christ.  Into Hell they go.  There are no other options.

Jesus isn't trying to deny you life, He's trying to show you life and how to truly LIVE.

Don't delay. Nobody reading this was guaranteed a today. God's mercy is why you are alive right now. His mercy gives you another chance to say yes to being saved.  You are in shark infested waters, the ship you were on has sank, the only chance you have to live rests in the only one who can save you. Jesus.

Ironically everyone is equal in shark infested waters.  In those waters you are not a successful businessman, you aren't a housewife.  You are not a nurse nor a world renowned scientist.  You are equal.
You are not a good person who always helps your neighbors or kids. You are not the one who always volunteered at the shelter.  All equal. All in danger of dying.
Only in accepting the offer of Jesus can you be drawn out of those waters. Allah can't do it, Buddha can't do it. Only Jesus has the ability to make you stand on the water. Only Jesus saves.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Why was it Written?

Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.  John 20:30-31. 

"So that you may believe."

Hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

People today are so desperate for hope. So desperate to believe in something. 

Also they are looking for something they cannot have.  They look to extend their lives and be accepted just as they are.  Flaws and all.

In Christ it's possible to come as you are.
But thank God He doesn't leave us in that condition.  Sin is forgiven and lives are changed for the better.  Those who die in Christ are immediately ushered into His presence. 

Our world looks to be accepted as it is...whether or not that person calls it sin.
In the name of tolerance they 'preach' that YOU must accept THEM. But ironically they state that they will not accept YOUR beliefs.

Interestingly everyone who ever lived will indeed admit and confess that Jesus is Lord. Either willingly or unwillingly it is going to happen.

Four Gospel accounts to proclaim the good news.  A world that even today is still being discovered.  All point to our Creator.  There are those who argue that there is no Creator, but they cannot prove it.

"That believing you may have life in His name."

 I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, you will receive him. John 5:43

There indeed is a man coming that people will go after.  They indeed will follow after him.

I firmly believe that AI (artificial intelligence) is what will be set up in the rebuilt Temple in the book of Revelation.  People WILL be forced to believe or else they die.

It isn't so for those who hear the Spirit call to them today and receive the free gift of Salvation.  Until Christ Jesus comes again, you have the choice to believe.  It's not being forced upon you like other worldly religions. No one is going to kill you for not becoming a Christian.  Jesus offers.  It's a simple matter of you accepting. 

The Gospel accounts are provable.  You can also look at world history accounts and see that these events took place.  The work of the Spirit of God is very evident throughout the last 2019 years.  Much of the unexplainable is indeed explainable when it comes to spiritual matters when you view it from the Bible. 

So that you may believe. 


In a world that sees so much evil, murders, torture, horrific killings and death.  It's looking for something to hope in.

My hope is in Jesus. He sought me a very long time ago. There was no coercion.  Nobody pinned me up against a wall with a knife to my throat. The truth of Jesus was a shot to my heart. He saved me. I had but to ask. To believe in the hope He offered.  

The same goes for you.  The same hope is available and free.  There's nobody with you right now forcing you to come to Christ. It's His offer.  An offer.

Believe. Hope.