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March 31, 2016, 2:06 PM

But on the Other Hand

Do you ever find yourself caught up in a mindset of negativity?  Do you ever wake up on the wrong side of the bed?  Or are you a person who only sees the glass half full, the dark side of the silver lining, and your peaches and cream have curdled?

A depressing negative mindset is easy enough to fall into, and before you know it you can find all sorts of things to complain about.  

Just today on the way to work:  I woke up late, and ran outside to a gray and overcast rainy morning.  I got caught behind a Sunday driver and had another car pull right out in front of me.  I seemed to catch every red light on the way to work.  I will go home to kids who are noisy and will demand my attention and I will go to bed without much fanfare or celebration for anything that I tried to accomplish today.  

But on the other hand…

I woke up this morning. I have legs to carry me where I want to go.  The clouds and overcast sky allowed my eyes to adjust more slowly than if there had been bright sun.  I have a  car to drive to work, in fact I have two.  I have a job that I can be late too without getting to much of a scolding from my boss and my brakes work on my car.  When I get home I am blessed to have children to go home to that love and adore me.  They want to spend time with their daddy.  Oh and I have a home to go home to.  My wife who loves me and supports me will be there to spend time doing the things that parents and spouses do.  And she is there for me every day.  

Are you seeing my point?  There will always be things to complain about.  There will always be things that don’t go the way we think they should and their will always be mundane things in life.  

But maybe we should learn not to focus on the negative and depressing.  Maybe we should focus on the many good things that God has blessed us with.  Maybe we should realize that we are far more blessed than we often realize.  

Today don’t dwell on the bad.  Instead soak in the good.  Change your perspective and embrace the day that the Lord has made.  Rejoice and be glad in it. 

“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.” - Philippians 4:8




March 16, 2016, 2:03 PM

Let Your Life's Light Shine!

We live in a day and age where people often bark worse than they bite.  They talk more than they do and they do less than they would have you believe.  
It is a world with big talk, big mouths and often much ado about nothing.  In respect to politics, we hear much talking, but we have learned by experience that those talking rarely if ever actually do what they say they are going to do.  

In today's world, when somebody does do something that (they feel) is good or noteworthy they often feel the need to draw attention to themselves so that others can pat them on the back.
We life in an age where it seems everyone wants to be affirmed or congratulated for doing the right thing, when the right thing should be the expected action.  

We live in an era of social media, polls and survey where people want to know the reaction to their action before they ever act so they can be sure they are going to get the desired reaction.  
Before many people will act they want to be sure they are going to get the praise, attention and adoration they crave.  In short, they want to be glorified for doing what should be expected.  
We live in a time of "positive re-enforcement", where people have become conditioned to be bribed into action.  We have learned to look for the assurance of re-enforcement and reward before we will ever act.  

As Christians we are to be people of action.  We are to be obedient to God's will and God's word regardless of any anticipated outcome.  We are to do the right thing no matter who or who is not watching.  At the same time we must never be afraid of being seen doing what is right.  We are to lead the way for others as we follow the lead of our Leader, Jesus Christ through the compelling of the Holy Spirit.  The Bible says in Matthew 5:16

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

However lest we stray into the trap of arrogance and pride and are accused of doing good for our own reward we must remember that the key to letting your light shine before men, is so that they will glorify God the Father...not you.  We don't do the right thing for earthly reward, we do the right thing because it is the right thing to do.  Dwight Moody may have said it best when he said.

It is a great deal better to live a holy life than to talk about it.  Lighthouses do not ring bells and fire cannon to call attention to their shining - they just shine.

Christian, live your life in a Godly fashion.  Be a person of action, a doer of what is right regardless of consequences or who is watching.  

Less bark and more bite is what we need so that the world can see our Lord and Savior through the light Jesus Shines through you and me.  

Let your life's light shine for Jesus, for His Glory.




March 15, 2016, 1:49 PM

What is God Doing in You?

What is God in the process of doing in your life?  

What does God want to do in your life?

If you answer is “probably nothing” or “I don’t know,” then don’t you think you should check again and find out?

Whether you have invited God into your life or not, God is at work in your life.   Whether you believe in God or not, God is at work in your life.  God loves you too much to not be working in your life and in your heart.  God cares too much about you leave you to your self and the consequences of leaving you to your self.  God desires to know you and for you to know Him too much for Him not to work towards that end.  

Now, God will not force you to accept Him, believe in Him, or follow Him.  That is your choice.  He gives you a free will.  But that does not mean that He is not at work in you nor does it mean He is not working to get your attention.

Perhaps you believe and have have invited God into your life, and you even believe that God is at work in your life but you don’t believe what He is doing is anything significant, big or important.  Or perhaps you believe that your life is to insignificant for God to do anything in you.  

Either way, you could not be more wrong.  

God often speaks in a still small voice, but He never does anything that is small or insignificant.  Everything God does is necessary and important for both now and the future.  God made you, and He made you in His image.  He made you for a reason and a purpose.  He has big plans for you big His love for you is big.    God’s love for you is endless and His power is infinite.  He could do anything He wants but He wants to do it in and through you.  

Understand that You are important to the God of all God’s and King of all kings! 

Now, let me ask again…What is it God is in the process of doing in you?  

Don’t you think it is time to ask Him and find out?




March 14, 2016, 12:58 PM

A Life that Demonstrates Grace

As a Christian, the actions of our life aught to be permeated with kindness.  Kindness is love expressed in practical ways.  Intentionally putting others before yourself.  Intentionally considering what you can do to meet other peoples needs.  

We aught also to be tender-hearted, that is keenly sensitive of the feelings and needs of others.  Being tender-hearted means showing compassion to the people around around us.  If we are  tender-hearted we will feel the pain of others in their time of need and celebrate the victories of others in their time of triumph.  

Forgiveness must rule the day and the moment for the Christian.  It should be demonstrated by us because we have experienced the greatest measure of forgiveness the world can ever know:  The forgiveness of our sin by the only one who has the ability to forgive sins through His death on the cross; Jesus Christ.  We aught to demonstrate forgiveness readily to others in every instance because there is no instance worse than what ours was when Christ first loved us.  Even in our forgiveness we often rebel against the forgiving God and Creator who lovingly, patiently forgives us for all wrongs.  

The world aught to see in those of us who are believers in Christ, a life that demonstrates grace, because it may be the only demonstration of gray, love, kindness, forgiveness and tender-hearted compassion that they will ever know. It might just be that act of Grace that will lead them to ask why we have shown them that very kindness.  It is then that we can tell of a loving God and Savior who died for them and then they can know the greatest expression of love ever known.

It is this demonstration of grace that is so desperately in need of being experienced in a world so full of hate and wickedness.  

Today and ever day let your life demonstrate grace.  You never know how it might impact someone in need.




February 19, 2016, 10:24 AM

How to Know How to Vote

As an American I believe it is my honorable duty to vote, and to have a voice.  As a pastor of a small church in America, I do not believe it is my job to tell people WHO to vote for.  Rather,  I believe as a Christian and a pastor that it is my duty to challenge them  TO VOTE and help them to know HOW as Christians they should decide who to vote for.

So as an American i say to Americans across this great and blessed land…vote.  Educate yourselves on the issues and the candidates and vote.  

So HOW should you vote?  I am glad you asked.

Pray - The second step is going to be to prepare to vote and part of preparation is prayer.  But before you even begin to prepare you must ask God to God to guide you by His Spirit not just in how to vote but in how to prepare.  Who to listen to, where and how to find your information that will prepare you.

Prepare - Prepare through prayer but pray not just as you cast your ballot, but pray as you are educating yourself on the issues at hand and the candidates at large.  

You can pray and you can study and prepare but what issues should you be looking for, what is it that will Identify the candidate that you should cast your ballot for?

Vote for the candidate that aligns himself most closely with God’s Word and the Biblical Values that God’s Word teaches. - Many of the candidates will profess to be Christian and you will hear the phrase “Christian values” and “Family Values” a great deal.  Don’t just listen to their words but follow their lives.  Does their testimony proclaim a life of Faith, honesty and integrity.  You are not trying to judge their realness of their Christianity but you must judge the character of their faith.  It is by God’s blessing and direct hand that America has been and will continue to be a great nation.  But we as a nation have strayed far from the Lord.  But it is not too late.  So what Biblical issues should I be looking for as I prepare to vote?  I am glad you asked.

We must vote for the person who will be determined to lead our nation back to God.   - Don’t buy into the argument that: “Not everyone in America is Christian so we can’t be governed by Christian principles.” While it is certainly true that America’s people has turned it’s back on God, and not “everyone is Christian”, as a Christian I want everyone to accept Christ and become a Christian.  Vote for the person who will do His best to lead America back to the Bible and back to God.  A person who will stand up to the ACLU and other organizations that want to silence the freedom of religion.  A person who believes that “Separation of Church and State” means for the Government not to interfere in the church not preventing the church from being active in government.

Vote for the person who will support Israel. - We must stand by Israel as a strong ally and not back away or undermine the nation of Israel.  - The Bible says (referring to Israel) I will bless them that bless you and curse them that curse you.  The undermining of Israel must stop or we are in real trouble.

Vote for the person who will Stand strong in support of Biblical marriage. - Marriage between one man and one woman.  The person who will support Biblical family values and not cave tot the demands of the Homosexual movement and political correctness.  As Christians we must love all people whether or not we agree with their actions.  We must learn to live peaceably with all people regardless of opposing views and positions.  But that does not mean we have to redefine what God created and defined.  

Vote for the person who will stand up for the Sanctity of life. - Abortion is murder, to assist in suicide is to be an accomplice to murder.  All life is precious in God’s sight.  We need someone to stand up and fight and speak for those who cannot fight and who cannot speak.  

Vote for the person who will lead America back to a Biblically compassionate way of thinking and living. - One of the knocks against conservative Christians is the perception that you cannot be conservative and Christian.   We must stand, speak and act for those in need and not have out actions pre-empted by greed.  We must work to develop a mindset of compassion.  Their are people in need and we have a duty to help.  This duty falls on the church to meet the need.  That includes those living in America and those who are trying come to America and even those across the world.  America was once, generally speaking, a God fearing society that believed in helping their fellow man.  At some point the Government decided it was their job to decide who gets what help and how much help they get.  Not only that but they decide who has to be the ones to help them.  The constitution of the United States says “We the People”, and we are the people.  A mindset of compassion must be fostered and it begins by putting the government putting the honous back on the people to care for others.  I believe that if that is fostered We the People will not fall short in meeting any need.  It is God that provides and his provision is not lacking.  

Are there other issues?  Yes, but if we first look to these issues in filtering our vote.  Then I believe the rest will fall in line.  

What if there is no person who meets these qualifications?  Then we must get down on our knees all the more and pray for God to have mercy and raise up Godly leaders.  

What we must also realize is that it is God who raises up Kings and puts down Kings, and that includes presidents.  We must ultimately trust God, but God leads us to fist trust Him but also be moved by Him to action.  

“If my people who are called by name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. - II Chronicles 7:14

 


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