Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 31, 2014

Grace for your spirit
Therefore prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. I Peter 1:13

Sports teams often use the words; Step up, come to play, bring your "A" game.  It is time for us to commit those words to our Christian walk
I will do more than belong, I will participate.
I will do more the believe, I will practice.
I will do more than care, I will help.
I will do more than be fair, I will be kind.
I will do more than forgive, I will forget.
I will do more than teach, I will inspire.
I will do more than be friendly, I will be a friend.
2015 is before us.  I will decide, I will resolve, I will

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 30, 2014

Grace for your spirit
The beginning of wisdom is: Acquire wisdom; and with all your acquiring, get understanding.  Prize her, and she will exalt you; She will honor you if  you embrace her.  Proverbs 4:7-8

Proverbs says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. That truth is much more than an academic exercise.  It is just the beginning. We need to continue to acquire it, prize it, embrace it, and make it special.  All great relationships need this commitment, and so does the application of wisdom.  Let's ask for wisdom and understanding, and God will give it to us.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 29, 2014

Grace for your spirit
The beginning of strife is like letting out water, so abandon the quarrel before it breaks out.  Prov 17:14

A story is told about a Dutch boy who was walking beside a dike when he noticed the dike was leaking through a small hole.  He stuck his finger in the hole to keep the leak from getting bigger and bigger. His quick action saved the village from a flood.  Strife between people can be just like that.  Strife is a drip that can turn into a flood.  Before it does, let's take action to plug the strife and save a destructive quarrel. Let's be alert and ready to stop strife before it gets destructive.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 24, 2014

Grace for your spirit
The angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most  High will overshadow you; and for that reason the Holy Child shall be called the Son of God Luke 1:35

This announcement to Mary was certainly a surprise, but by faith she treasured it in her heart and was ready to obey.  From our perspective it was a fulfillment of prophecy that was on the way since the Garden of Eden.   The coming of Jesus is the focal point of the whole Bible.  We too accept the news by faith.  Will we treasure these things in our heart and be willing to obey?  The life we choose will be the answer to that question.  May it help us all have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 23, 2014

Grace for your spirit
Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and report to John what you hear and see;  the blind received sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.   Matthew 11:4-6 

When John the Baptist was having a bad time in prison, he begin to wonder if he was following the right man.  This was the message Jesus sent to him.  Even on our bad days, we need to always remember that every good and perfect gift comes from above.  The good things that happen in this world are the result of Jesus coming down and changing our world.  This is the reason for every season.  May our faith and praise never waiver. 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 22, 2014

Grace for your spirit
O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together. Psalm 34:3

For too many, the glory of the Lord is lost in the "fine print".  It is the duty and joy of Christians to magnify the presence of the Lord, exalt His name, and make it real to the world that has missed His true meaning. As we behold the glory of Jesus in our walk, may that vision exalt His name and bring joy into the lives of others.  Anytime is a good time, and no better time that in this season of joy.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 19, 2014

Grace for your spirit
For this reason we have been comforted.  And beside our comfort, we rejoiced even much more for the joy of Titus, because his spirit has been refreshed by you all.  II Corinthians 7:13

I finally decided what gift I want for Christmas.  I would like to have my spirit refreshed, my heart filled with joy, and be comforted by the faithfulness of my Christian brothers and sisters in Christ.  If I could feel a renewed zeal, and zest for Christ that lifts us all, that would fill my stocking.  Let's all make a renewed commitment to put Jesus first in our lives, and see what God will do for us. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 18, 2014

Grace for your spirit
Those who sow in tears shall reap with joyful shouting.  Psalm 126:5

It would be great if everything in life was fun, fun, fun.  Many times the difficult things we must do in life, produce the greatest results in the long run.  When we quit at the first sign of trouble, little will be accomplished.  Let's commit to put out the extra effort to sow bountifully.  When we reap bountifully, there will be joyful shouting and celebrating.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 17, 2014

Grace for your spirit
Therefore, do not be partakes with them (sons of disobedience) for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light.  Ephesians 5:7-8

We  have two clear cut choices in life.  Walk in the Light as He is in the Lord, have fellowship with Him, or walk in darkness and cling to the ways of the world.   Whichever way we lean, we will eventually partake of it and become like them.  God is the God of light.  The devil is the god of darkness.  If we are the Light of the Lord, there should be no gray areas.  Walk toward the Light.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 16, 2014

Grace for your spirit
Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.  Proverbs 3:27

A few weeks ago, I conducted a funeral for a friend who passed away at age 90.  Her birthday was the Sunday before,and the church decided to have a party for her.  Touched by the gesture, she wrote a nice note of thanks the next day.  By the end of the week, she was gone.  It was a touching reminder to do good while you can.  Tomorrow is not a guarantee.  Say thank you today.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 15, 2014

Grace for your spirit
But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Hebrews 12:8

God wants us to live a holy, submissive life as His children.  When we fail to acknowledge Him as our Father, we will reject His discipline. When we refuse to humble ourselves under His mighty hand, we will bear the burden and punishment.  Rebellion has no place in the family of God.  If we want to be children of the King, we will have to learn to partake of His discipline.  The life we will enjoy in His house, will be worth it

Friday, December 12, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 12, 2014

Grace for your spirit
So you too, when you do all the things which are commanded you, say, 'We are unworthy slaves; we have done only that which we ought to have done.'  Luke 17:10

Most of us feel the need to be praised and rewarded for every good thing we do.  The praise makes us feel we are earning a good relationship with the one we serve.  The true Master slave relationship is not like that.  We serve as slaves without rights, and without praise to serve the one who sustains us.  With God, our good works is not to attain His favor, but His favor motivates us to good works.  With God, our good works are not to be saved, but because we are already saved.
Anything we accomplish, we ought to have accomplished.  May this thought strengthen our faith when nobody says "thank you."

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 11, 2014

Grace for your spirit
Though the fig tree should not blossom and there be no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive should fail and the fields produce no food, though the flocks should be cut off from the fold, and there be no cattle in the stalls, Yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.  Habakkuk 3:17-18

It took a lot of time and soul searching for this prophet to reach this conclusion.  When he saw the coming catastrophe he wanted to blame God and accused God of making a mistake.  When he finally realized that "The Lord is in His holy temple and all the earth should be silent before Him."  His journey of faith led him to peace.  Where are we on our journey?  When we humble ourselves, we too can find peace and satisfaction even in trouble times.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 10, 2014

Grace for your spirit
You shall love the Lord you God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind;  Luke 10:27
All is an interesting little word.  It means the whole time, the whole number, the greatest possible, every, any, nothing but, or dominated by. God gives us life and breath for 168 hours each week.  What percentage of that time do we give to the Lord?   All would be 100%. One hour a week figures to .06% of the time.  We all fall short at times, but certainly all should be our goal for the One who has given us our life and breath.  Let's turn up the burner.  We need more steam.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 9, 2014

Grace for your spirit
I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go  to the house of the Lord."  Psalm 122:1

Riding in cars causes 20% of all fatal accidents.  17% off all accidents do occur in the home.  14% of all accidents happen to pedestrians walking down the street.16% of all accidents happen traveling by plane, train, or ship.  Only .001% of all deaths occur in worship services in church, and these are related to previous physical disorders. Hence, the safest place for you to be at any time is church.  Go to church.  It could save your life and save your soul as well.   :)

Monday, December 8, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 8, 2014

Grace for your spirit
But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment.  For by your words you will be justified, and by your words  you will be condemned.  Matthew 12:36-37

Yes we are saved by the blood of Jesus, not by our good works and right words.   But may be never forget that our words reflect who we are and what we are.  A new creature has a new heart, a new mind, and a new mouth.  Our words and our works snow that we are justified or condemned.  We shouldn't need a muzzle to hide our words from people.  Let's be found walking and talking in a worthy manner.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 5, 2014

Grace for your spirit
And I will remember My covenant, which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and never again shall the water become a flood to destroy all flesh.    Genesis 9:15

In 1923  Japan was hit with a devastating earthquake.  U.S. President Calvin Coolidge and the American Red Cross immediately sent ships with millions of dollar in aid.  The Japanese government sent a cable to the U.S. saying ,"We will never forget."  Eighteen years later, December 7, 1941, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor plunging the world into World War II.  Thankfully, God never forgets His promises.  The many promises He has made, He also remembers and always keeps.  Let's learn to remember and be thankful that we can trust in Him always.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 4, 2014

Grace for your spirit
My children, with whom I am again in labor until Christ is formed in you.  Galatians 4:19

The process of becoming a disciple is a continuing process.  Like a natural birth, first their is conception of Jesus as Lord.  Next, is the growth of our faith, followed by being born again by the water and the spirit.  But the process does not end there.  As we learn to walk after the Spirit, yielding ourselves to our Lord, Christian maturity develops until we are complete.  That takes work and mentoring.  When Christ is fully formed in us, we look like  Him.  Let's keep laboring and growing.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 3, 2014

Grace for your spirit
But when he came to his senses, he said, "How many of my father's hired men have more than enough bread, but I am dying here with hunger!"  Luke 15:17

The dictionary defines common sense as sound practical judgment that is independent of specialized training.  Many degrees in specialized areas will not insure that we have any common sense.  No matter what knowledge this runaway son possessed, or how much money he had, his most treasured asset had been instilled by his father; common sense.  Unfortunately, he had lost it when he ran from home and ended up broke in the pig pen. Common sense didn't come from his rowdy friends or from the pigs. His common sense returned at the same time the picture of his father returned.  Both of those led him home.  What is leading us?  Is it taking us home?

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Grace for your spirit December 2, 2014

Grace for your spirit
He whose ear listens to the life-giving reproof will dwell among the wise.  Proverbs 15:31

Everyday in life we have a variety of messages that come to us.  Some are wise, some are foolish, some are life diminishing, some are life giving.  It takes discernment to block out the messages that will  hurt us, and drink in the messages that will benefit us.  Sometimes those life-giving reproofs are less than pleasant, but when we listen, learn, and apply them, wisdom will rule our lives.