Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Serving Is Essential!

But by love serve one another. (Gal. 5:13) 

Our world has become a large, impersonal, busy institution. We are alienated from each other. Although crowded, we are lonely. Distant. Pushed together but uninvolved. No longer do most neighbors visit across the backyard fence. The well-manicured front lawn is the modern moat that keeps barbarians at bay. Hoarding and flaunting have replaced sharing and caring. It's like we are occupying common space but have no common interests, as if we're on an elevator with rules like: "No talking, smiling, or eye contact allowed without written consent of the management."

Painful though it may be for us to admit it here in this great land of America, we're losing touch with one another. The motivation to help, to encourage, yes, to serve our fellow-man is wanting. . . . And yet, it is these things that form the essentials of a happy and fulfilled life. 

Improving Your Serve 

Serving is essential regardless of your profession. I have had the immense honor and privilege of serving in the name of Jesus in various settings ranging from executive security services to missions outreach. In each of those instances, I had the chance to "serve like Jesus". Serving like Jesus requires a spirit of humility, patience, and ultimately, obedience. 

We all know it's one thing to serve when we know we are getting something in return such as a paycheck or some other form of acknowledgement. It's another thing altogether when we choose to serve outside of our own selfish ambitions with very little to no reward in it for us whatsoever. Being a layperson or servant leader such as a pastor, evangelist, apostle, or a teacher are not very easy because of the immense responsibility that is involved in those positions with very little to practically nothing to gain in tangible returns. 

There will be instances where there can be tangible returns when in active non-workplace-related ministries in the form of a small salary or love offering when God opens the door for evangelistic outreach. Those are just a couple of instances that I can think of off the top of my head. But in all reality, the real reward will be moreso intangible than tangible. The ultimate intangible reward will come in two forms: 1) The words "Well done my good and faithful servant" will be heard from God's mouth into your life. 2) An incorruptible crown just for you. Number two would be more of a tangible reward than intangible, but you get the point. 

The point of this post is not so much the kind of reward you gain in serving others, but the satisfaction you get from making an eternal impact in the lives of those God brings into your life. The satisfaction of knowing that you have won one soul for Christ is worth more than any reward that can be given to us. The satisfaction that you have gone from being one of the many that are called to one of the few that are chosen is also something that should never be overlooked. I can go on and on and on about the subject of serving. I strongly encourage you to experience the amazing rewards and satisfaction of being able to serve like Jesus. Go ahead! I dare you!...:-)

Thank you so much for reading this far my friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!. . . . :-).  

Sunday, April 27, 2014

The Riddles Of Life!

By his spirit he has adorned the heavens; his hand has pierced the fleeing serpent. Lo, these are only parts of his ways: and how little a whisper is heard of him? But the thunder of his power who can understand? (Job 26:13-14) 

There are numerous riddles in life that remain wrapped in mystery and shrouded inside an enigma. The sea, for example, is an unexplainable phenomenon. Who can fathom its tide affected strangely by the moon . . . ?

We manage to continue on, though brilliant scientists have been trying to solve and/or explain life's mysteries for years. . . . But when God leaves us with a mystery that isn't solved in a week or two, most of us go through desperate struggles believing that He is good or fair. I mean, after all, if we're going to trust God, He should do only good things, right? No fair doing mysterious stuff! 

The Bible that I read simply doesn't present that as the way life is. Yet the world I live in seems to expect that. And that's certainly the cynic's line: "You mean to tell me you are going to trust a God who treats you like that?" When will we ever learn that cynics have no capacity to understand the profound and unfathomable ways of God? 

Living on the Ragged Edge 

There's no doubt that life can be confusing from time to time. There are moments throughout our lives when it won't make any sense whatsoever. Quite frankly, it can get downright frustrating as well. When I first started this blog on Christian living, I could not help but wonder if I was actually doing not only the right thing, but the godly thing as well. I was like, "How am I going to pull this off? I'm not even a writer. At least not in the "storybook" sense." 

On a Sunday night, I sat here in front of my laptop with a puzzled look on my face as to whether I should write or not. Yes friend, I was riddled about why I should blog about Christian living to millions of people around the world when they already have been reading, listening, or watching anything related to Christian living in the first place. That was the moment that I had to ask God if this is what He really wanted me to do. 

Did it make any sense in my mind to become a blogger? No. Did it make a whole lot of sense to God? Yes. Let's just say that the first two weeks of blogging didn't get off to a very optimistic start. It took quite some time to really get my writing experience off the ground while at the same time simply trust God that He will drive the traffic. The whole blogging experience (everything from writing to some of the more techy stuff such as SEO and HTML coding) became something that I also had to learn "on my own". 

My dear friends, this is only a small sampler of the many riddles in my life and I'm confident in the Lord that you have your fair-share of riddled events in your life as well. When life doesn't seem to make any sense nor add up in the way you were hoping for, the best thing we can do as believers and followers of Jesus Christ is to keep the faith and trust God with our lives since God has already resolved all the riddles that will continue to come our way.

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!. . .:-).

Friday, April 25, 2014

Claim God's Grace!

For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God (Eph. 2:8) 

While most people in the world are busy building towers with highest hopes of making a name and gaining fame, God's truth sets the record straight. On the basis of God's Book, His Holy Word, it is my plea that we simply admit our need and claim God's grace. Instead of striving for a man-made ticket to heaven based on high achievement and hard work (for which we get all the credit). I suggest we openly declare our own spiritual bankruptcy and accept God's free gift of grace. "Why?" you ask. "Why not emphasize how much I do for God instead of what He does for me?"Because that is heresy, plain and simple. How? By exalting my own effort and striving for my own accomplishments, I insult His grace and steal credit that belongs to Him only. 

The Grace Awakening 

God's grace is available to everyone who needs it. All you have to do is ask. It has been God's grace that has carried me through some of the roughest moments in my life and it will be His grace that will continue to propel me forward in whatever He has prepared for me and those He surrounds me with.  Claim God's grace while it is still available to us right now. 

My dear friends, God's grace will not only help you through the hardest times in your life, but it will also help influence those around you because His grace will empower you with compassion. All you have to do is ask Him and trust Him in the process of grace. Get ready friends, God will use you. His grace is more than enough!

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' precious name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!!. . . . :-). 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Proper Perspective!

So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsakes not all that he has, he cannot be my disciple. (Lk. 14:33) 

Jesus' words are neither complicated nor vague. He simply says, "If you are going to call yourself one of My disciples, you must release your grip on materialism." To keep all this in proper perspective, think of it this way. He is not saying that we cannot possess anything, but things must not be allowed to possess us. To use His words, we must "give up" our possessions. 

Corrie ten Boom, that saintly lady who endured such brutality from the Nazis in Ravensbruck during World War II, once said that she had learned to hold everything loosely in her hand. She said she discovered,  in her years of walking with Him, that when she grasped things tightly, it would hurt when the Lord would have to pry her fingers loose. Disciples hold all "things" loosely. 

Do you? Can you think of anything that has a tap root to your heart? Let go! Give it up to Him! Yes, it may be painful. . . but how essential!

Strengthening Your Grip 

This post is a very revealing one! Revealing in the words that Corrie ten Boom spoke of. If we hold on to anything and/or anyone too tightly, it will be very painful when our Lord prys our fingers loose from those things and/or people in our lives. When we have become so comfortable with our lifestyles and environment, it's very easy for us to become complacent. As a result of that complacency, we immediately (at a sub-conscious level) take that comfort for granted and firmly grab hold and refuse to make any changes that would challenge that comfort zone we find ourselves in. 

It is at this moment when we must make every effort to gain a proper perspective. The best place to gain that proper perspective is from the cross. Jesus has provided us the very best perspective when He had to let go of His place in Heaven momentarily to come to earth, minister to large groups of people, performed many, many miracles, and then was event crucified to eventually resurrect on the third day. Instead of holding on too tightly to the comforts of heaven, Jesus had to be obedient to His Father to the point of death. 

I know for a fact that this perspective is not a very easy one to swallow. This perspective is not only challenging, but downright demanding. God's perspective on our lives is the perfect perspective. It is His perspective that leads us to the way everlasting in the way it eventually lead Jesus to the right hand of the Father that is in Heaven.  Wouldn't you want it any other way? Remember friends. . . Jesus is the Way, Jesus is the Truth, and Jesus is the Life. 

Jesus has already given us the proper perspective! Seek Him while He can still be found friends! Jesus loves you way too much for you to be left behind because you choose not to gain the proper perspective in regards to the way you need to live your life right now and where you will spend eternity. Have you given your place in eternity any thought lately? I highly recommend you do. 

Thank you so much for reading this far my friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!. . . :-). 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Enduring Faith!

But let patience have her perfect work, that you may be perfect and entire, lacking in nothing. (James 1:4) 

We're very fickle in our faith, aren't we? We are inconsistent, ambivalent. We sing "My faith looks up to Thee". . . until the medicine stops working, until the lights go out, until the bill comes due and we don't have what it takes to pay it. Until our grades slip or our career takes a turn or we loose a mate. . . . 

How do we learn consistent faith? We learn it one day at a time. We learn it through endurance. James writes: "Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance" (James 1:2-3). He's not talking about a will-o-the-wisp faith that starts out on the 100-meter sprint and, quicker than you think, is over. Anybody can handle that kind of faith. Anybody can take ten, fifteen, or twenty minutes of a test. But ten days or fifteen days, or a year, or two or three? Well, that's another matter. That's the enduring faith James is talking about. 

Perfect Trust 

This post has really hit home as far as I'm concerned. Enduring faith is exactly what I have been practicing (rather imperfectly). It was in 1992 when I was first diagnosed with abnormal brainwave activity (seizure disorder) and first attack later that year. Ever since, I have since experienced numerous seizures including one that lasted ten minutes that practically took my life and wound up having a 45-minute coma. And this is only the tip of the iceberg my friends. 

I can go on and on about my struggles in the faith since coming to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ in 1990, but I would prefer to meet with you and your church to testify about God's hand upon my life to this very day. How does that sound to you? Please forward all inquiries to my email at amircarmickydiaz73@gmail.com. I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to minister at your church as God leads. My dear friends, that is called enduring faith!

Enduring faith never has nor will ever be easy. Enduring faith has a way of purging out everything that will hinder you in your walk with God. Enduring faith has a way that will forever reveal your true character in the face of adversity. It was enduring faith that as evolved into a more radical, stubborn faith when confronted with certain decisions that would change the course of my future. It is this same enduring faith that has already made the declaration that I have been healed by the stripes of Jesus Christ. It's also that same enduring faith that has me believing (and expecting) that a major financial breakthrough is on its way. 

In other words. . . I have enduring faith! 

What kind of faith do you have? Are you a sprinter in the faith or a marathon runner in the faith? 

Thank you so much for reading this far my friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-). 

Saturday, April 19, 2014

A Sweet, Winsome Melody!

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Phil. 4:8) 

Let me urge you to take charge of your mind and emotions today. Let your mind feast on nutritious food for a change. Refuse to grumble and criticize! Let your life yield a sweet, winsome melody that this old world needs so desperately. Fix your attention on these six specifics in life: 
  1. Not unreal far-fetched dreams, but things that are true. . . 
  2. Not cheap, flippant, superficial stuff, but things that are honorable.  
  3. Not things that are wrong and unjust, . . . but that which is right. 
  4. Not thoughts that are carnal, smutty, and obscene, but that which is pure . . . 
  5. Not things that prompt arguments and defense in others, but those that are agreeable, . . . 
  6. Not slander, gossip, and put-downs, but information of good report, the kind that builds up and causes grace to flow. 
Strengthening Your Grip 

I have often heard it said that love is what makes the world go around. I will agree with that sentiment. To a certain degree. I have also heard often that music is what makes the world go around. I strongly agree with that sentiment! Music has a way of influencing people like very few forces on this planet can. Music can either influence you for godly good or dig even deeper into our inherently evil nature. 

Exactly what type of melody exudes from our being largely depends on what we allow into our lives. Do we allow negative influences into our lives thus resulting in having an indignant and hostile melody toward the lives of those around us? Or do we get plugged in to God Himself and embrace and share that sweet, winsome melody with those around us resulting in a positive and lasting impact in the lives of those in our lives? 

My dear friends, the choice is exclusively yours. I choose to embrace and share that sweet, winsome melody with everyone I come into contact with. Why? Because it is always better to give than to receive! 

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Life In Living Color!

Therefore I love your commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold. Therefore I esteem all your precepts concerning all things to be right; (Psalm 119:127-128)  

The thing I have always appreciated about the Bible is that when great truth is given, God frequently incarnates the truth in lives with whom we can identify. He doesn't stop at theory as He teaches us about the abstract importance of faith. He mentions Abraham as a model "who staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief." 

He doesn't just talk about standing alone and being people of character and resiliency---He gives us Elijah. He shows us the prophets because we have much greater difficulty identifying with abstract truth. We can, however, identify with people. . . . 

God doesn't just say, "You ought to forgiven." He gives us Joseph, who forgave his brothers for their mistreatment of him. God paints His heroes "warts and all." Since there are scars and a dark side to every life, we're not shielded from the Jonahs and the Samsons, from the pride of the King Sauls or the adultery of the King Davids. We see it in a raw, living color. 

Living on the Ragged Edge 

Life in living color can be full of surprises. There's no ifs, ands, or buts about that! The contrast of color in a persons life will vary. The colors in a person's life will vary anywhere from as colorful and vibrant as those in the picture above to as dark and sinister as those of storm clouds gathering for destruction. Nevertheless, those colors are alive and well in that person's life. 

The irony of it all is that life in Christ is not always as colorful as the picture shown above. The colors from time to time will be extremely dark and bleak. When we think about Christian persecution, will the colors in your mind be cheerful and bright or dark and bleak? Can they be both? It's all about your perspective and what God enables you to see through His eyes. More often than not, the colors of our lives in Christ will change from one extreme to another like the various seasons of the year in the United States and other parts of the world. 

When you stop and take the moment to take a really good look at your life, what colors would you be able to see? If you can relate your life to the four seasons we experience in the United States, in what season of your life would you consider your life to be? Would it be Winter? Spring? Summer? Fall? 

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' precious name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Understanding And Obedience!

The Lord GOD has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned backward. (Isa. 50:5) 

Our greatest struggle is not in the realm of understanding the will of God; it's in the realm of obeying the God whose will it is. To be painfully honest, when you and I look back at our lives, we do not find ourselves puzzled and mystified about God's will nearly as much as we find ourselves stubborn and resistant to the One directing our steps. Our problem isn't that we don't know; our problem is that we do know but aren't willing to follow through. 

That's the basic struggle of the Christian life. The clear truth of God is set before us time and time again. It's available to us, we read it, we hear it explained from the pulpit, in a Christian book, or on a Christian radio program, and we sense the Holy Spirit whispering, Yes, this means you. We understand Him clearly, but we resist. When the chips are down, our tendency is to say, "I've got it planned another way." 

Moses: A Man of Selfless Dedication 

Following and doing God's will is in my honest opinion the most difficult part of my Christian walk. I would not expect it to be any different for any other Christian regardless of how long we have been in Christ. Knowing God's will is definitely not an exact science for sure. God's will will manifest itself in our lives in millions of different way under various circumstances and situations. With that said, it should be very easy to conclude that knowing God's will cannot be found in a 12-step program. 

Finding God's will can only be found when we take the time to be absolutely still and listen to the Holy Spirit speak to you through prayer and/or reading of God's Word. Discernment plays a huge role in this process. This is when that quiet time with God first thing in the morning is so critical. Once you have that coveted quiet time, take advantage of that opportunity to ask God to help you understand His will in order for your obedience to bring glory to His name. 

Thank you so much for reading this far my friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Sunday, April 13, 2014

We Weep And Pray, Grow And Learn!

A man’s steps are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way? (Prov. 20:24) 

Tests are never wasted. God never says, "Oops, made a mistake on that one. I shouldn't have given you that. I meant that for Frank. Sorry, Bob." It's as if the Lord has our name on specific trials. They are specifically designed for us, arranged with our weaknesses and our immaturity in mind. He bears down and doesn't let up. And we groan and we hurt and we weep and we pray and we grow and we learn. Through it all we learn to depend upon His Word. . . . 

The common response to trials is resistance, if not outright resentment. How much better that we open the doors of our hearts and welcome the God-ordained trials as honored guests for the good they do in our lives. 

Hope Again 

Life can be really hard sometimes. Right? Trials have a way of wearing us down over an extended period of time when it appears that there is no relief in sight. No one (including myself) is immune to trials. Trials can either make us better (not bitter) or break us and leave us defeated and without hope. 

My dear friends, our response to the trials we face in life will not only make a big difference in our own lives, but in the lives of everyone we come into contact with. It is in those times when we are confronted with great trials when we fellowship with other brothers and sisters in Christ become a huge blessing in our lives. It is when we fellowship with one another when we will be able to freely express our emotions in a very productive and constructive way. With that said, let us all make a concentrated effort to weep, pray, grow, and learn together! Amen? Good!...:-). 

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Friday, April 11, 2014

Glorify God To The Maximum!

I will praise you, O LORD, among the people: and I will sing praises unto you among the nations. (Psalm 108:3) 

By making us in His imagine, God have us capacities not given to other forms of life. Ideally, He made us to know Him, to love Him, and to obey Him. He did not put rings in our noses that He might pull us around like oxen. . . . 

No, He gave us freedom to make choices. By His grace we are equipped to understand His plan because we have a mind with which we can know Him. We are also free to love and adore Him because we have emotions. He takes pleasure in our affection and devotion. We can obey His instructions but we are not pawns on a global chessboard. It is in the voluntary spontaneity of our response that He finds divine pleasure. When His people freely respond in worship and praise, obedience and adoration, God is glorified to the maximum. 

Laugh Again 

To God be the glory! 

Yes, dear friends, God shares His glory with no one! Giving God ALL the glory is the highest form of worship we can possibly give to Him during our time on Earth and in Heaven. It is only when we bask in His glory that we are able to truly experience God's manifest presence and blessings in our lives. 

How do we go about experiencing God's manifest presence and blessings in our lives during our time here on earth? Can we experience His presence and blessings during our Sunday morning worship services? Definitely! Can we also experience His presence and blessings during our quiet time with Him at home? For sure! In my honest opinion, I wholeheartedly believe that the time we can really experience His presence and blessings in a magnified manner is when we serve. Actively serve. 

Jesus actively served in His community among the Jews of His time. And it was during those times when He actively served with His disciples when God's presence was truly magnified and blessings poured forth in ways that were far from human logic and understanding. It was in those situations where God was glorified to the maximum. Just imagine how God would have been glorified in the feeding of the 5000. To try to put any words to how God was glorified in that scenario would drive us crazy. 

Always remember friends...TO GOD BE ALL THE GLORY!!! 

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Big-Picture Perspective!

You are my hiding place and my shield: I hope in your word. (Psalm 119:114) 

One of the greatest benefits to be gleaned from the Bible is perspective. When we get discouraged, we temporarily lose our perspective. Little things become mammoth. A slight irritation, such as a pebble in a shoe, seems huge. Motivation is drained away and, worst of all, hope departs. 

God's Word is tailor-made for gray-slush days. It sends a beam of light through the fog. It signals safety when we fear we'll never make it through. Such big-picture perspective gives us a hope transplant, and within a brief period of time, we have escaped the bleak and boring and we're back at soaring. . . . 

We can actually stand firm through discouraging times but only if we apply God's instructions. 

Living Above the Level of Mediocrity 

Having a big-picture perspective definitely comes in handy! The unfortunate part is that without God by our side and in the reading of His Word, we will be very limited at best in having not only the proper perspective, but more importantly, His perspective on everything that concerns our daily living. It's imperative that we are able to have God's perspective on ALL matters! 

Finding God' perspective requires a great deal of discernment. God's big-picture perspective does not come in one big panoramic shot. It comes in bits and pieces. The mere fact that His perspective comes in bits and pieces even though He already sees the whole picture of our lives requires us to trust Him at all times. 

Let's be honest. Trusting God's perspective can be difficult sometimes. The reason why it can be difficult to trust His perspective is because we (including me) can be very stubborn and selfish in wanting to have our way. This is all quite understandable given our human tendencies and the fact that we can only see so far ahead. If we can find any comfort in this so-called "dilemma" of trusting God's big-picture perspective is knowing the fact that God will never steer us the wrong way because His vantage point is far greater than ours. Take heart friends! God is a Faithful Friend and will NEVER leave us nor forsake us! 

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Monday, April 7, 2014

Keep To The Quest!

Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither turn away from the words of my mouth. (Prov. 4:5) 

All of us are surrounded by and benefit from the results of someone's quest. Let me name a few: 

- Above my head is a bright electric light. Thanks, Tom. 
- On my nose are eyeglasses that enable me to focus. Thanks, Ben. 
- In my driveway is a car ready to take me wherever I choose to steer it. Thanks, Henry.
- Across my shelves are books full of interesting and carefully researched pages. Thanks, authors. 

My list could go on and on. So could yours. 

Because some cared enough to dream, to pursue, to follow through and complete their quest, our lives are more comfortable, more stable. 

That's enough to spur me on. How about you? 

Day by Day with Charles Swindoll 

Come to think about it, I really thank God for the people that have gone out before us and have been creative enough to provide us with the amazing luxuries we have today. Aren't you? Practically every single country in the world has at least one Nobel Peace Prize winner. Those who have been able to win such a prestigious prize have been commended for some type of invention. A certain Nobel Peace prize winner named Jonas Salk was recognized for creating the Polio vaccine and as result that creation, saving millions of lives in the process. 

My friends, what kind of path have you been able to make for those that have yet to join your journey? Have you been able to "keep to the quest" that God has set before you? If so, be encouraged and stay on course! If not, then get back in right standing before God and get back on track. If God is for you, then who can be against you? Don't let discouragement keep you down when the going gets tough! Will there be moments when you might doubt your role in the Kingdom? Of course! Will there be moments when the people around you will attempt to keep you from achieving the kind of life that only God can provide? You bet! What it boils down is this: Will YOU let them? 

To be very honest, I'm totally clueless as to the kind of quest God has you on at the present moment. Could your quest cross paths with the quest God has me on right now? Only God knows this for sure and time will definitely tell. Maybe we have already crossed paths through Facebook, Twitter, or through some other social media outlet. Maybe we have already spoken over the phone or have already chatted via Skype. Maybe we have yet to meet through any means provided us...period. Whether we ever cross paths or not, "keep to the quest". Keep to whichever quest God has created for and always remember that God is on your side and many Christians around the world are praying for us that we will remain steadfast in the whole process. 

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in YOUR quest as you grow in godly wisdom and intimacy in your relationship with God! Always remember. . . . JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Saturday, April 5, 2014

God Is In Charge!

Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, as a child that is weaned of his mother: my soul is even as a weaned child. (Psalm 131:2) 

When it comes to irritations, I've found that it helps if I remember that I am not in charge of my day . . . God is. And while I'm sure He wants me to use my time wisely, He is more concerned with the development of my character and the cultivation  of the qualities that make me Christ-like within. One of His preferred methods of training is through adjustments to irritations. 

A perfect illustration? The oyster and its pearl. 

Irritation occurs when the shell of the oyster is invaded by an alien substance like a grain of sand. When that happens, all the resources within the tiny, sensitive oyster rush to the irritated spot and begin to release healing fluids that otherwise would have remained dormant. By and by the irritant is covered---by a pearl. Had there been no irritating  interruption, there could have been no pearl.  

No wonder our heavenly home has pearly gates to welcome the wounded and bruised who have responded correctly to the sting of irritations. 

The Finishing Touch 

I'm glad that I was able to find the right picture for this post. Being an American citizen has its advantages and disadvantages. The advantages are by no means exhaustive, but one of the obvious advantages we have still to this day are the numerous freedoms that we have come to embrace in our short lifetimes. On the flip side, a MAJOR disadvantage we have is the very fact that we have also taken those freedoms for granted and have frequently abused them. 

My dear friends, regardless of which country we live in and represent, we must ALWAYS remember Who's in charge. God is. God has been in charge since the dawn of creation. God has ordained everything to be exactly the way we have seen, heard, and learned since our infancy. Think about that for just a second. One surefire way we know that God is in charge is to simply take a look at our natural surroundings. God ordained the incredibly amazing balance in the ecosystem.

When we acknowledge that God is definitely in charge (or in control), we would feel a whole lot better about not only our present circumstances, but our future as well. Knowing He is in charge also helps us in maintaining our faith, hope, and trust in Him regardless of who is in authority above us. Instead of criticizing those who are in authority above us whos values may not be in alignment with our Biblical values, we must go to the One Who really is in charge in prayer and supplication. With that said, I want to ask the following question. . . . 

How confident are you of God being in charge? Or in control?

Thank you so much for reading this far friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Thursday, April 3, 2014

A Present Help!

The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. (Psalm 46:7) 

We deny it. We fake it. We mask it. We try to ignore it. But the truth, stubbornly persists--- we are weak creatures! Being sinful, we fail. Being prone to sickness, we hurt. Being mortal, we ultimately die. Pressure wears on us. Anxiety gives us ulcers. People intimidate us. Criticism offends us. Disease scares us. Death haunts us. . . . 

How can we continue to grow in this bag of bones, covered with weaknesses too numerous to mention? We need a big dose of Psalm 46: "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." What hope for those struggling through the grind of personal weaknesses! 

Living Beyond the Daily Grind 

I will admit. This particular post almost takes a more sinister turn than most posts I usually do. But. . . . 

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." 

I have a confession to make. 

I'm a die-hard superhero fan! Yes, you heard that right! 

Since I was a little boy, I have been into practically every single superhero personality there is to know. Everyone from Mighty Mouse to Goku of the famed Dragonball Z saga and the list goes on and on for a very long time. You get my point! I always had a fascination with the battle of good versus evil and watching good triumph over evil every single time. 

Guess what friends! We serve One that has triumphed over evil since the beginning of time itself. His name is Jesus! We don't need to watch cartoons to experience the adventure of being rescued when we fall into trouble. Oh no! All we need is the faith of a mustard seed and have the steadfast assurance of knowing that He is "a present help" in our time of need. As Christians, Jesus is our Superhero! No either person, imagined or real, can triumph over evil in the way Jesus can! 

My dear friends, Jesus is there for us at a moment's notice. In the same way we would run to someone we know when trouble arises, we can run to Jesus on our knees. At the present moment, the Holy Spirit is the One Who guides us and protects us from any kind of harm. There will also come a day when Jesus Himself will come back and vanquish evil from the face of this planet. It is truly amazing how as Christians we have an unprecedented chance to experience the most heroic act in all of human history and in eternity when He rescues us (Christians) to be received in the heavenly realm for all of eternity! With that said, this brings up a very important question. . . . 

Are you ready to be rescued? 

If so, then awesome and congratulations! If not, I strongly encourage you to find a Christ-following, Bible-believing (and practicing) church and give your life to Jesus before it's too late. Believe me, you will know when it's too late because you will either be awake or wake up to the news of millions of people vanishing from all around the world. Those news will make headlines in a way that no ever event will ever make it. To be extremely honest, I would hate for you and your loved ones to miss the miraculous opportunity to be "raptured" by Jesus on the day He comes to get His people. God is a very "present help"! All you need to do is seek Him and you will find Him! 

Thank you so much for reading this far my friends! May God continue to bless you and keep you in Jesus' mighty name! Jesus IS mighty to save! Always remember. . . .JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

God Is There, Every Hour!

Fear not; for I am with you: be not dismayed; for I am your God: I will strengthen you; yea, I will help you; yea, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness. (Isa. 41:10)  

Back in World War II a scribble of comic graffiti began appearing on walls everywhere, proclaiming, "Kilroy was here!" This declaration was found on walls in Germany. It was found on buildings in Tokyo. It was found on big boulders in America. Kilroy was everywhere, it seemed. 

God is not like Kilroy. He does not write His name on the walls and rocks of life, but He is there---every day, every hour, every tick of the clock! To borrow the now-classic words of the late Francis Schaeffer, "He is there and He is not silent." Never doubt the presence of God. 

He is there with you on your own personal pilgrimage . . . His unsearchable mind working in concert with His unfathomable will, carrying things out under His sovereign control. 

Esther: A Woman of Strength and Dignity 

All of us in some way, shape, or form will have a very long and difficult journey in our lives. Obviously, the type and degree of difficulty any of us experience in life will vary from person to person. Regardless of how difficult our experiences are, it's always comforting to know that God is right there with us every step of the way. 

Having God by our side will always enable us to gather the strength we need to make it through the hurdles that come our way. As a result of receiving the godly strength we need for the way, we will become people of dignity. Before we know it, everything we say and do will be done in a very dignified manner. We become more Christ-like in our behavior. 

God is indeed with us everywhere He sends us. He is also with in every moment of our waking day. Knowing that He is indeed with us regardless of the situation at hand is the most comforting and assuring piece of knowledge we will ever have. My dear friends, God is with you. There may be moments when it may not feel like He's with us, but He's there and ready to help us through whatever concerns us. What a beautiful thought!

Thank you so much for reading this far my friends! My hope and prayer is that you will be encouraged, inspired, and wiser from knowing that God always has, is, and will forever be with us! God bless you and keep you all in Jesus' mighty name! JESUS LOVES YOU AND SO DO I!!!...:-)