Blog
Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29   Entries 56-60 of 144
August 2, 2016, 3:17 PM

Forecasting Showers of Answered Prayers!


Do you really want God to answer your prayers?

Here in the upstate of South Carolina it has been a hot, dry summer.  Really dry.  So dry that I have only mowed my grass one time all summer long.  

So we have been praying for rain.   Begging God for rain.  

Well today it rained.  It didn’t rain long, but while it did rain it rained hard.  It started raining while I was walking to the mailbox, and I got soaked.  While I did not mind getting wet, it made me realize something about my prayer life.  

We are afforded the opportunity to pray and ask for God something in our own way and on our own time.  But, God answers prayers in His way and in His own time.  God’s ways are not our ways, and they are far above our ways.  

Like the prayed for rain, sometimes when God answers prayers it can be a little un-nerving.  Dark clouds billow on the horizon, thunder booms, and lightning flashes.  The wind picks up and things get intense.  Yet with all the wind, lightning and thunder came the rain.  We get so nervous about the activity surrounding the rain that we forget God sent the rain.  

Like the prayed for rain, sometimes God’s answers to prayer come at times when we don’t really want them.  I was trying to make it to mailbox, but I am sure others were riding bikes, or hiking on trails, or at the lake.  The rain if allowed could have become an inconvenience or interruption of our plans so much so that we forget that the rain was prayed for and sent as an answer to our prayers.  

Sometimes the answers to our prayers come when we are not expecting them to come because we don’t really believe God is going to answer our prayers, even though He has answered our prayers in the past.  I was not expecting it to rain today even though rain was in the forecast.

Sometimes we miss the blessing of the answer of prayer because it is not exactly what we were thinking of when we prayed.  The shower wasn’t long enough, or it was to hard, or the wind was to dangerous.  We forget that God knows exactly what we need and His answers are greater than our asking.  

Sometimes we miss the answer to prayer altogether.  We are so focused on the thunder, lightning and wind that we miss the fact that God answered our prayer for rain.  Or we focus on the fact it rained where you were and not where you live.  (Don’t worry next it might rain where you live and not where you are.)

Always remember that God’s answers to your prayer are greater than your asking.  Remember that God even answers prayers that we don’t know to ask.  God knew we needed forgiveness from sin.  Before we even knew to ask, He sent His Son to die on a cross in our place, so that later our prayers for forgiveness could be answered.  

Pray and ask God for your daily needs.  Trust Him to answer.  Trust Him to answer in the best possible way at the best possible time.

After all answers to prayer are in the forecast.




July 19, 2016, 3:27 PM

A Needed Reminder



"Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful;
And let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds,
Not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the day drawing near" - Hebrews 10:23-25

In light of all the violence, racism,  hatred, and wickedness that has been seen (especially) these past few weeks, I wanted to give this important reminder.

We the church, that profess to believe and follow Jesus Christ and worship the living God, aught to be the leaders in showing a world the way.  Not because we have all the answers but because we know THE ONE who is the answer...The Living God almighty!!!  The world is looking for hope and we are the ones who Know WHO hope is found in!!!

Let me encourage you to not give up hope.  But Hold onto the HOPE that holds on to you.  Let us come together to work together for the purpose of encouraging others, loving others and sharing the truth of the hope of salvation in Jesus Christ with others.  

 




July 11, 2016, 12:45 PM

Ridding Yourself Of Your Burden


No doubt you have realized by now that being a believer in Christ does not mean that you will not have troubles and problems in this life.  Everyone in this life sooner or later (and most likely both) you will deal with hardships, sorrows and being treated poorly in life.  Turning to Christ for Salvation does not cause life’s troubles to cease or go away.  If you were expecting that, or someone promised you that...well I am sorry.  

However, it does mean that you have an advocate to whom you can take your every concern, heartache and care.  

“Casting all your care upon Him, for He careth for you.”  I Peter 5:7

The People that Peter was addressing when he wrote this were under intense persecution from the government, people who were practicing other religions, enemies, and even their own countryman.  The Christians did’t have anyone in whom they could trust; a friend, neighbor, or even family member might betray them and turn them over to the authorities which would mean imprisonment and possible death. 

But Peter had lived with Christ, walked with Christ, and experienced Christ and his love and compassion.  He knew that ultimately it was Christ that was in control of even the most dire of situations.  Knowing this he instructed the people to “cast their cares upon the Lord.”

Casting your cares upon Jesus is a choice.  It is a decision that you must make.  Not just once, (although it begins with a single choice) but day by day and moment by moment.  It means allowing God to carry the weight which is dragging you down.  It means trusting Jesus with each issue.  It is a conscious decision and the idea of turning over your perception of responsibility and control to someone else can be a most frightening one.  We as a people tend to want to be in control and keep control.  But we must realize as long as we are hanging on we never truly have control.  There are just things that are outside of our control. 

To be freed from our cares and concerns we must realize that there is an almighty God with whom we can trust to carry the weight.  And when we do release them into Christ’s strong hands, it is beyond liberating.  

Remember that Peter did not differentiate between little cares and big cares.  Every one of our cares is God sized to God, and God can handle them all.  Remember that we must also choose not to snatch back our cares.  They are God’s cares when we let Him fully have them and no one cares more than God about you and your needs.  

When you have called upon Jesus Christ to be your Savior and Lord, then God adopts you as His child.  He stands prepared and able to carry your burdens and will free you not only from sin but from the burdens are unable to bare.  But, we must turn to Him and give him our cares, He will not take them from us if we are not willing.  Turn to him and tell Him “God will you take this?  I can’t do it any more.”

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He might exalt you in due time:” - I Peter 5:6

The question is, will you let Him carry your heavy load?  Will you turn to Him today?




July 5, 2016, 3:26 PM

Time to Let it Go


What is it that we are holding on to and refusing to give up, that we aught to be willing to pry our fingers from.  

Not to long ago I heard someone say:
"Even in the face of great persecution and hardship, America will stand strong and refuse to get on her knees!"

While I understand their sentiment was in reference to patriotism and standing against oppression, terrorism,  and tyranny, I wonder if that attitude of pride has not impacted our own spiritual detriment?

Don't misunderstand me, I am a red-blooded, flag waving American who realizes I am truly blessed of God to live in this still greatest of nations.  I am forever grateful to the those who have served, fought and died so that I can enjoy the freedoms that I do.  

But I believe that it is that American stubbornness that we are so proud of, has caused God to remove His hand of protection from our nation.  We have seen the consequences of the sin, but we are so enamored with our own pride that we reject  the open loving arms of an Almighty God!

We are so dead set against bowing the knee to any enemy, foreign or domestic that we have refused to bow the knee in surrender and prayer to the God that has blessed our nation for so long. 

In Revelation 16 we find the world in the midst of the 7 year tribulation and subjected to the worst plagues imaginable.  Famine, disease, and wars have ravaged the land. Now the plague of sores, the water in the sea and rivers turned to blood, and mankind being scorched with fire are being experienced.  It is the judgment of God upon a sin cursed world.  It is the worst of the worst and it is the hand of God bringing judgment.  

Yet the most striking words from the verses in chapter 16 take place in the last half of verse 9 where mankind we find man's response:

"and (man) blasphemed the name of God, which had power over these plagues: and they repented no to give Him glory."

And verse 11:

"And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not their deeds."

Instead of repenting and turning to God, these people shook their fist in the face of God and refused to bow the knee to their creator.

Sound familiar?

While we are not living in the end times of the tribulation yet.  But before we get there, as a nation and as individuals.  Don't you think we should let go of our pride, bow the knee in prayer before God, repent and ask Him to bless us once again?




June 28, 2016, 3:02 PM

4 Words that are key to the Problems of Violence in the World


Violence is everywhere.  Hatred is increasing.  Rhetoric and Political Maneuvering continue.

It seems that there are more voices than ever crying for the violence to stop.  Yet screaming insanely for a return to sanity doesn’t seem to solving any of the problems.  

The loudest voices are calling for gun control.  Remove the guns and we can remove or at least reduce the problem is the mantra.  Yet, in the places where there is the most gun control, it at least seems to be where there is at least as much violence as places where guns are rampant.  

But this is no a blog about the pro’s or con’s of gun control.  It is not about whether we should or should not have more in depth background checks.  It is not a discussion about what the founding father’s intention of the 2nd amendment was or was not.   

This is about the real root of the problem.  

There is a real problem in America, and it comes down to 4 words. 

Love - or lack of love to be more precise.  The Bible says to love one another.  Yet all we really do is love ourselves.  Think about it.

Apathy - Most people think hate is the opposite of Love but it is not.  Apathy is the opposite of love.  If it is not someone that we love, then we as a country and human race tend to be apathetic towards them.  

Think about it.  Generally speaking if a person is part of or associated with a particular demographic group, then they care; because they love them.  But if they are not part of that group then we generally speaking tend to be apathetic.

Hatred - When someone in a particular demographic determines that someone else not in their demographic is apathetic to them, then hatred can set in.  When hatred sets in then violence soon follows.  When hate turns to violence, we don’t need a gun to kill someone.  A gun is not the most dangerous of weapons…any weapon at your disposal in the hands of hate.  

Apathy is something we are born with, love is something we must learn to do or have our heart changed by God to do.  Hatred is the result of not learning to love. Hatred is also the result of Sin.  

Sin is something we are all born with and something that can only be removed by God.  It can only be removed by God when we are honest with God and turn only to God and ask for forgiveness of our sin.  We are commanded in the Bible to love one another.  To not love one another is to sin, love is only possible because of God.  God first loved us the Bible says.  He sent His only Son Jesus Christ to die in our place and pay for our Sin.  He offers a free gift of salvation and a heart forever changed.  God offers this gift of salvation out of love with open arms.  But the world, and closer to home, in America we have now rejected God and hate anything to do with the God of the Bible.

All life is precious.  All lives matter.  Yet we are living in a generation who has not been taught the Love of God.  Because they have not been taught the love of God, we have never learned to love others and apathy has set in.  Now that apathy has set in, Hatred and violence has followed.  

Don’t you think it is time we started teaching the Love of God in America and the world?

 


Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29   Entries 56-60 of 144