Strength To Stand (1/1/19)
“All who declare that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God.” (Matthew 25:40 NIV)
Our students and chaperones just returned from another awesome Winter Retreat experience in Pigeon Forge, TN! The name of this conference is the Strength to Stand Conference and this is truly my prayer for our students and families this new year. That we would all have the strength to stand no matter what comes our way. Of course, we will never be able to find the strength on our own to stand in this life, but when we put our hope and trust in Jesus, we find all the strength we will ever need. How is this possible when our situations seem to leave us no other choice than to bow down or sit down in the face of adversity or difficulty? By declaring Jesus is who He says He is and is living within us! What? The God of the universe lives within us? Wow!! This is the truth of the above passage and the only truth that will allow us to stand our ground this new year. So… stand strong (in Jesus) in 2019!
The Least Of These (12/12/18)
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” (Matthew 25:40 NIV)
My prayer is that we would see “the least of these” everywhere we look this holiday season. More than getting gifts or even giving gifts, may we give God’s love as we respond to everyone we meet or speak to. I’ve heard it said before, “Christmas is the time of year when we act the way we should the rest of the year”. Lord, help us to share You through the words we say and the lives we live this season, and into 2019. Someone who knew a thing or two about serving the least of these (besides Jesus) was Mother Teresa. She said it best when she said, “I would rather make mistakes in kindness and compassion than work miracles in unkindness and hardness”. Amen. Join me this Christmas season in loving even “the least of these”.
Give Them To Him (11/28/18)
“Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NLT)
Now that Thanksgiving is behind us and Christmas is right around the corner… the stress levels are rising! The Lord keeps bringing this passage and this truth back to my mind. We all have worries and anxieties, we all have crazy busy lives and stress way too much. We all need a break. If we really believed this verse and practiced it, casting our cares (giving our cares) to the Lord, I know our lives would look different. The best part of all is that everything you are worried about or anxious about right now, God already knows about. Nothing surprises our God. All that’s left to do, as He waits with open arms to take your worries and your cares, is to give them to Him. It’s the season of giving… give Him your cares. For He cares for you! Amen! Merry Christmas!
I’ve Got The Keys! (11/6/18)
“I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven.” (Matthew 16:19 NLT)
Some dude named William Temple once said, “Power in complete subordination to love – that is something like a definition of the Kingdom of God.” One thing I have to constantly remind myself of is that God has the ultimate authority in this universe. Yet, He has also entrusted me with His authority here on earth because I have been given the “keys”. I may be in the driver’s seat now but Jesus is still my GPS. Where would I be without GPS nowadays? My prayer is that I will always follow His lead and be faithful to lead others to follow Him as well. Here we go…
Trouble Of Joy (10/18/18)
“When troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.” (James 1:2 NLT)
The Lord spoke to me the other morning about the troubles that come my way (which are often) and the joy I should have in spite of those trials/struggles. As a matter of fact, Henry Drummond once said, “Joy is very cheap, and if you can help the poor on with a garment of praise it will be better for them than blankets.” Based on this passage, my prayer journal read as follows: “Father, it is only because You make promises about me being an ‘overcomer’ and ‘all things work together’ for my good that I can defy my natural instincts and rejoice in my trials. This is the key to overcoming because it undoes everything the enemy intended to accomplish by opposing me. This is bringing the celebration of Heaven into the trials of Earth. Joy comes before breakthrough! Amen.”
“Elisha replied, ‘As surely as the Lord lives and you yourself live, I will never leave you.’” (2 Kings 2:6 NLT)
From sports to marriage to eating healthy to life in general… everything comes down to persistence. How persistent am I in my walk with God is the real question. A.W. Tozer once said, “If there is anything in your life more demanding than your longing after God, then you will never be a Spirit-filled Christian.” That is a tough pill to swallow but so true! The question I believe this passage (when thinking about Elisha’s persistence in following after Elijah) begs of me is how persistent am I for God’s presence, for His touch, for my continual spiritual growth? I must press in to Him with all I’ve got, much like Elisha’s example here. My prayer is that God would allow me to not be content with just a casual relationship with Him. I must remain persistent.
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