Thursday, August 27, 2020

Blessings in The Daily Grind

 Did you open your eyes this morning and gleefully say, "Oh boy' I get to serve my family all day today!"? If you are anything like me your thoughts may be more like, " Hmmmm? What do I really have to do today?" This may be more of a groan than enthusiastic.

Looking to our Lord for strength and direction help your heart and mind align with His purposes. Fortunately the scriptures remind us that He, God, prepares us for every good work.

Instead of self pity, because the day may appear monotonous, much like yesterday, you can have a thankful heart recognizing the privilege you have in the here and now to serve your family. The dirty socks that never made it to the hamper can remind you that you are blessed to have little ones running underfoot. Dishes stacked up near the sink can remind you that you are fortunate to have a spouse that provided for breakfast but needed to leave early for work. The messy papers, crayons, markers and scissors are reminders of creative children ready to learn. The list goes on and on.

Attitude adjustments are needed for us all. We can allow ourselves to wallow in self pity, or we can choose to open our eyes to the blessings that surround us daily. Drawing close to the Savior is a must and will help to see things in a positive light allowing the negative feelings and emotions to roll away.

Serving your spouse or your children with love that comes directly from the Lord will bring great stamina. The Lord is pleased when we serve mankind. We are embodying His nature and that is always a very good thing!

Today is a day to let the old nuisances fall away and reminds us to follow the scripture;

"Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken. let us show gratitude by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe." Hebrews 12:28

Open your eyes today and see His Goodness in your little world. He is at work and
so are you!

Thursday, August 20, 2020

What is that smell?

"But thanks be to God, who always leads us in His triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; to one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma of life to life, and who is adequate for these things? 2 Corinthians 2:14-16

Stepping outside to my enclosed patio, I can't see any neighbors, but I sure can smell their chicken barbecue simmering on their grill. My stomach growls as my mouth salivates. I lift my nose to the air to take in one more tantalizing breath. I am drawn to the wonderful dream of taking part in it's deliciousness.

Did you realize that you are always giving off an aroma? I'm not talking about your perfume or aftershave. I'm not talking about the odious smells that may be from a good workout. I'm talking about a sweet fragrance of life that is expelled from you every time you are in someones presence. Because you are a believer in Jesus Christ you have the Holy Spirit living within you which is emanating His sweet aroma of life, eternal life that is. Your very presence brings love, joy, hope, peace and patience. 

Interestingly there is a great contrast that appears here.Your very aroma of life can speak death, destruction and the smell of decay to the unbelieving soul. These individuals tend to stay as far away from you as possible. They do not want to recognize their need for the Savior, that they fall short as they compare themselves to a living, holy and glorious God.Your aroma can be extremely repulsive. It can be compared to a dump that has been on the outskirts of my town. Recently this dump started accepting train loads of garbage from New York City. The stench is overwhelming! No wonder people lash out at your beliefs and treat you unkindly, or tend to remain aloof.

There is a great divide when it comes to Jesus Christ. You are either being drawn to Him, or you are turning your back and running from Him. My prayer is that you will recognize your posture here.It can also explain why you have some strained relationships. 2 Corinthians 2:17 explains that when we sincerely look for God, He opens His Word to our understanding;

"For we are not like many peddling the word of God, but as from sincerity, but as from God, we speak in Christ in the sight of God."

The word of God holds all truth. When you take it in through your eyes or ears, God's Word will permeate your heart. You will be drawn to His pleasant aroma of life. You will now grow stronger in His ways and in His gifts. You will have an awesome eternal future ahead.

Take in a deep breath of His Holy Spirit today. Turn from your doubt, distrust and unbelief. Come to the Savior of the world who can do anything and everything. You too will emanate that precious sweet aroma!

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

The King and His Kingdom

Friends, as I write this today, we are less than three months away from a Presidential election that seems to be the most important election in the modern history of the United States and will not only effect our nation but also the entire world.

No matter the outcome, I believe that the upheaval that all of us have felt since March of this year because of the Coronavirus and all the lawlessness that is happening in our cities all across our nation will only grow and increase.

We look with expectancy for an end of all this chaos and a return to “normal” but I hold out little hope for it.

My conviction is that there is something that will happen or maybe a series of things that will happen that will render the United States powerless and anemic to have any influence in the affairs of the world.

Russia, Iran and Turkey as well as other nations are poised to fulfill prophecy found In Ezekiel 38 and 39 and the only thing stopping them is the United States strong support for the nation of Israel. I remind you friends, that the United States is not in any prophetic verses of the Bible. This is strange given that this nation is at this time the strongest in the world. This is the basis for my belief that something will happen to our nation that takes us out of the game, so to speak.

Ezekiel 38 and 39 name these nations specifically, (using their Old Testament names) that will rise up to invade Israel to take its prosperity away from them. They are already waiting at Israel’s borders.

If you have studied these chapters, you know that God Himself will intervene  and will protect Israel and that will open up the door, as the world looks on, for a man to come forward with seemingly all the answers to the chaos and calamity that will ensue after these nations are divinely destroyed. The whole world will look to this man.

This man, the Scriptures tell us will appear to the world looking like a savior for the world, but in reality is a man of deceit and destruction. The world will follow him. He is the Antichrist! (instead of Christ)

But friends, brothers and sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ, I do not believe that is our future.

Before this man can be revealed, the Word of God tells us that the one who is restraining will be removed. That restrainer is the Holy Spirit who lives inside every born-again believer across the world today. The church will be removed before this man is revealed. Please read carefully what the Apostle Paul under the direction of the Holy Spirit wrote to us in 2 Thessalonians 2.

2 Thessalonians 2:1-8(1) Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you,(2) not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come.(3) Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,(4) who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.(5) Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things?(6) And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time.(7) For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way.(8) And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.

My friends if this is so? How close are we to the rapture of the church? How close are we to meeting Jesus in the air as described in 1 Thessalonians 4?

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17(16) For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.(17) Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

Are you ready? Are you watching? Are you looking up?

It is my calling to keep you focused on one thing in the midst of all this chaos. That one thing is the return of the King and the setting up of His Kingdom!

As much as we care about this nation, (and we should) we as Christians must realize that our citizenship is not really a worldly one. Jesus told Pilate that He was a king but His kingdom was not of this world.

The Lord has blessed this country and we are very comfortable here, But we must keep our eyes focused upon the reality of our king’s return and the subsequent setting up of a kingdom that will go on for all eternity.

My friends, look up for your redemption draws near and the King is returning!


Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Fully Trusting the Savior


“I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices. My flesh also will rest in hope. For you will not leave my soul in Sheol, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption. You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Psalm16:8-11

We humans are incredibly emotional! We experience joy, disappointment, hope, sadness, love and distrust within the same hour. Many things bombard our day and move our thoughts and feelings in multiple directions. 

Have you ever gotten up in the morning and have feelings of doom and gloom? You try to put your finger on the reason you feel that way, but it really makes no sense. 

You need to shake it off and make a conscious decision to sit down with your Bible and turn to prayer. Stability comes when we hold onto our good thoughts, hopes and dreams.

Answers unfold when we put our full trust in our Savior Jesus Christ. He is often referred to as our anchor. He encourages our hearts and minds when we put our focus on Him, bringing peace, as we look for answers and direction. He literally calms the storm.

Trusting in the Lord lifts your heart above the circumstances of life and brings freedom from the burdens that the world sends our way, including our unstable emotions.

Jesus promises goodness in the land of the living and a forever gladness and joy with the gift of eternal life. Take a moment and dwell on living eternally in the presence of the Lord. There will be no sin there!

Raise your eyes, heart and mind towards the Lord today. Allow His joy to invade your life and bring healthy wholeness to your inner being in the here and now.

Seek and you will find!

God Pleasing Faith #6 Full of Faith