This summer I had the chance to go to Cape Cod, Mass. for a weeks vacation. One day we visited Highland Light, which overlooks the Atlantic Ocean. As I stood there looking at the vast waters a verse of Scripture came to me. "Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?" (Jeremiah 5:22). God chose to contain the mighty ocean by using small grains of sand. Something small and insignificant has power over the mighty waves, just to show us how vast and wonderful His boundless love truly is! Nothing can contain or control the love of God. It goes beyond the highest star, and reaches to the ends of the earth. It pulls a lost sinner out of the miry clay and prepares the vilest person for heaven, through the loving sacrifice of the Son of God. His love is beyond human understanding, and all we need do is repent of our sins and call on the name of the Lord and we shall be saved! May God bless you.
This question has been asked by countless people over the years. Acts 9:5 we find Saul of Tarsus asking this while on the road to Damascus. He was on a "missionary trip," doing something for the furtherance of his religion. But alas and alek, he was on the wrong path! How many sincere people go to church on Sunday but actually see no need of the Lord Jesus in their lives? We say we do, but we don't really depend on Him. We don't spend any time praying to the Lord Jesus. We fight the very One we think we are serving. Is the Lord Jesus the master of your life? Are you at His disposal? Is calling Him "Lord" just a title of respect or is there true meaning behind those words? Jesus became Saul's Lord on that road to Damascus because of the encounter he had with Him. If the Lord were to touch you today, or speak to you on your daily walk, or manifest Himself to you, would you serve Him? Would you say like the trembling Saul, "Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?" Let me encourage you today to pray as if this were your last day on earth, to serve Him as if there was no one or nothing else to serve, and give Him the respect and honor due any earthly emperor or king. If you can do this then you can call Jesus Lord, as Saul did so many years ago! May God bless you.
Mark8:22-25 this story does not indicate a lack of power on the Lord's part, but a full acceptance of His power on the blind man's part. This man was brought to Jesus to be healed. Jesus had to change the atmosphere of those around this man because obviously they influenced this man to a degree of unbelief. Sometimes we find ourselves with those who wouldn't believe God if He walked down the street and bumped into them! He took the man by the hand, led him out of town, spit on his eyes, and put His hands upon him, and asked if he could see. That is when he answered, "I see men as trees, walking." Jesus laid His hands upon him the 2nd time and the man was restored. Sometimes things don't happen the 1st time we get prayer. We must press through unbelief and doubts. A Christian woman came for prayer at church last week, having a head ache. She told me later that I prayed, "Lord, give peace to her head and body." She said that the head ache didn't go away completely because she thought she had a sinus problem. She came the next service for prayer and she said I prayed the same words over her, but this time the Lord spoke to her and told her to receive what was prayed. She did and the ache completely left and hasn't come back! If you have prayed about something and it hasn't changed, do as this woman did at church last week, and as the blind man did in Jesus' day: go back again and let the Lord speak to your heart. He still has the power to heal you and meet that need! May God bless you.
Many years ago at a minister's convention in Manchester, CT, the guest minister spoke from Matthew 26:39, which says, "And He went a little farther..." In every account of the Bible Jesus pressed His way to the will of the Father by going "...a little farther..." When the disciples went as far as they could go, Jesus went a little farther. Sometimes that is the difference between doing the will of God and coming short of His will. If we don't press our way in "a little farther," we, too, will fall asleep spiritually and miss His will for our lives. Let me encourage you today to go "a little farther," and press your way into His wonderful will! May God bless you.
John 6:5 & 6 we read of the multitude coming to Jesus one day and He lifted up His eyes and saw them. He then asked Philip, "Whence (from where?) shall we buy bread, that these may eat?" Jesus is concerned with our natural needs! He does care if you eat and where you shop. He is involved with our lives, though many times we don't realize it. But He asked this question of Philip. He could have asked, "Where is your source? Is your faith in your ability to supply the need, or is it in My ability?" I always heard that the finger that points is the hand that provides. If God is sending you in a direction, He will supply your needs! Jesus knew what He was going to do. He already prayed through before the need presented itself. He was teaching the disciples that success is not in things, but in faith in God. You can be a pauper and still be successful in God! His measure for success is faith. We haven't failed if we keep faith in God alive in our hearts. In this account, someone brought to Jesus a young lad who had 5 barley loaves and two small fishes. The question was asked, "But what are they among so many?" Is that what you say when the need is great but the means is small? Don't put your faith in what you have, but put your faith in God. He is still the God of the impossible! He took the food, gave thanks, and distributed it to the disciples, who gave it to them who were there. And they all were fed! Remember, nothing is impossible with our God! May God bless you.
Last night at church (3/2/14) Bro. Jeff brought a message about standing upon our watch, found in Habakkuk 2:1-3. A watchman stands at the station he was assigned to, not letting any unauthorized thing or person pass by. He is watchful and vigilant. He related a story about a man who testified one day. This Christian brother went to the emergency room of a local hospital in a lot of pain. As he was waiting to be attended to another person was brought in, worse off than he. This brother said he tried to pray for the person but had a difficult time because of his own pain. He said at that moment the Lord spoke to his heart and said, "You are on your watch." Somehow he managed to press through the pain, offered to God a prayer for that person and immediately his own pain left! Someone needs you to stand upon your watch. We actually repair people's lives by allowing the Lord to work in and through us. Stand on your watch today and see what the Lord will answer you! May God bless you.
I John 3:1-3 expresses the awe John had in his heart concerning the love the Father has bestowed upon us. He calls us His sons, sons of God in this world! The world doesn't understand the Christian, and the Christian doesn't understand the world. The manner of lifestyles are totally different. One of the biggest mistakes is to try to fit Christianity into the fads of this present world. The born again Christian has more going for them than the world ever did. God's ways are tried and true. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God..." We aren't going to be His sons some day: we are His sons and daughters right now! So we are to be like Him in every way. He is coming back soon so I must not become entangled too much in the affairs of this life. I have a hope inside me that causes me to press in and be an overcomer for His sake. Do we deserve His love? NO!! But He loves us just the same. If this hope of His return abides in you, you will purify yourself as He is pure. Striving for His approval is essential today and always. May God bless you.
In Matthew 11:25 Jesus prayed, saying, "I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes." Here we read of the main key to answered prayers: thankfulness. It is something we all can do. It's easy to give God thanks for everything He does. It lifts us into a different realm. We often bring God our needs, our complaints, and our desires. But did you ever bring God your thanks? Jesus taught us to thank our heavenly Father despite everything around us. We can thank God even when our situation dictates a different approach is called for. Jesus taught us by example to look for the different ways God works in each situation. If we can recognize His dealings with man we can be thankful for His handy work and find the higher realm to live in. Later in this chapter, Jesus said, "Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." He had it to offer others because that is where He was living: through thankfulness! May God bless you.
2 Timothy 2:1 says, "Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus." I remember many years ago before I went to bed one night I knelt down in my living room to pray and this verse stood out to me. It was one of those "eye-openers." I was asking the Lord to speak to my heart about a direction in my life at that time. He didn't give me a lot of details: He simply said, "Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus." A lot of people are strong in a lot of areas: strong opinions, strong personalities, strong egos, etc. But how many are strong in the grace of Christ Jesus? What does that mean, anyway? God bestows His good pleasure on His sons and daughters to the point where they walk each day in that favor of God. His personality shines through their lives so much others see Christ in them. It is a friendly disposition which produces kind acts, goodwill, and full of His pleasure and joy. It is spontaneous and given freely to those who receive it. It is found in a realm higher than present circumstances and situations. Today, Be strong in His grace and you will find His strength and grace is made perfect despite your weaknesses! May God bless you.
Luke 4:16-22 this passage tells of the beginning of the ministry of our Lord Jesus on earth. We often lose sight of where we are to go next because we lose sight of where we came from. But the Lord Jesus spelled out the goals of ministry for all of us here. These should be in the thoughts of every Gospel worker: to maintain the anointing so we may preach the Gospel to the poor, be sent to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those that are bruised, and to preach the acceptable year of the Lord. These are the main purposes of ministry for all Christians. We have been saved to extend the message of God's love to those who don't know Him. In our service to others He beautifies us with salvation. And then He said, "This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears." Let today be the day you and I fulfill these things for others, in Jesus' name. May God bless you.