Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fountain Of Living Waters

Reading from the Book of Jeremiah 2:12-13
Jeremiah  2:12 Be astonished, O ye heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid, be ye very desolate, saith the Lord. 13 For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.

The people in Jeremiah 2:13 worked hard to dig wells for themselves, but their wells could not hold water. I am sure they were very disappointed when they did not get the result they wanted after working so hard. We know what it is like to work so hard with no results. We can spend many years of our lives digging "empty wells' like these, and that can be frustrating and discouraging.

You may be digging an empty well right now. Like a bowl that does not hold water.You may be working on something or somebody. You may have your own little project going on, but you are doing it your way. You may be following your own little plan, trying to make things happen in your own strength and ability. If so, it is not going to work if you have left God out of your plan.

There is nothing more frustrating than trying to do something about something you cannot do anything about. It is similar to having your car stuck in the mud and continuing to press the accelerator down and spin your wheels until you burn up the engine. We often burn out from weariness due to "works of the flesh," which are works that do not work.

Many times we make a plan and pray for it to work. God wants us to pray first and ask Him for His plan. After we have His plan, then He wants us to trust Him to bring it to pass. Stop digging "empty wells" and let God lead you to His "fountain of living waters."

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Little Foxes That Spoil The Vine

15 Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes.16 My beloved is mine, and I am his: he feedeth among the lilies

Solomon uses rich and unusual imagery to portray the love between a man and a woman in marriage. In Song of Solomon the married couple share a oneness that can be found in no other relationship.

Tucked away in the midst of the romance of the Song of Soloman is an extremly valuable piece of wisdom for everyday life. It is the "little foxes" that spoil the vine. What this means is that people's lives are typically not destroyed by what we would consider "big' issues, but by a series of smaller, seemingly insignificant choices or compromises.

Watch the "little foxes" in your life. Forgive even the most minor offense so that your heart stays clean, do not cut corners in your finaces or on the job when you think no one else will notice, do not expose yourself to ungodly influences, thinking, 'It won't hurt me if I do it just this once'. Little things add up to big things, and before you know it, "little foxes" can ruin a strong, healthy vine.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Stir Up Yourself!

Reading from the Book of II Timothy 1:5-9
II Timothy1:5 when I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice and,I am persuaded, is in thee also.Therefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God which is in thee through the putting on of my hands.For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner; but be thou a partaker of the afflictions of the Gospel according to the power of God,who hath saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but in accordance with His own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before the world began.

It appears that Timothy was getting fearful, weary, and unsure of his call. His spirit was sinking. So Paul came in with a strong word to revive him. Paul reminded him of his faith and how it came to him. He told him in essence, "I remember your grandmother's faith. I remember your mother's faith. I remember when I laid my hands on you and we prayed for you to receive the gifts that are in you." Then he said, "Now stir up the gift that is in you."

Nobody can stir up your gift, that fire within you, the way you can. Other people can stir you up, but as soon as you are alone, you can grow cold again. That is when you have to stir up yourself. Pray, worship, and praise God. Remember what He has spoken to you. Preach to yourself if you have to. Just do whatever it takes for you to stay stirred up in God!

Stir Up Yourself!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

He Is

Reading from the Book of Colossians 3:1-11

Colossians 3:1 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth: fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness which is idolatry.Because of these, the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience,in which ye also once walked, when ye lived in them.But now ye also put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.Do not lie one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds,10 and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him,11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free, but Christ is all and in all.
When you accepted Christ into your life, you became a new you. And the new you is different, is set apart and is special in God's sight.

Stop judging, stop comparing and stop criticizing. Everything you need to be concerned about is in Christ. Don't be looking so much at one another, but instead focus your attention on Him. Be in union with God.

Everything in you is now new. Your focus, your actions, your thoughts, and your heart desire are new. Don't compare with how you were, instead check the scriptures. Check the Holy Spirit. Check out all that is in God and you will find all that is to be in you.

Open your heart. Make room in your heart for God. Don't focus on yourself or on others. Instead, focus on God and the fullness that He alone has. Then become all that God desires.

He is full of tender mercies.
He is full of compassion.
He gives.
He encourages.
He will bless.
He will show.
He will shine.
He will forgive.
He will laugh.
He will cry.
He will help the poor.
He will extend His Hand to the weak.
He will give strength to the weary.
He will lift up the down trodden.
He will raise the dead. 
He will heal.
He will drive out devils.
He will heal all manner of weakness.
He will welcome the outcast.
He will speak tenderly to the broken.
He will pour out His Heart to the lonely

These are just some of the things God is and will do
Begin searching.
Begin looking.
Begin taking special notice, of all the things that He is.

These are the new things that He is doing in and through you.
He is full of tender mercies and wants you to do the same.
He is full of compassion and wants you to be full of compassion.
He gives and He wants you to give.
He encourages and He wants you to encourage.

And so it goes....
Each virtue,
Each fruit,
Each good thing is a gift from God

He is.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Are You Prepared?

Reading from the Book of John 14:1-3
John 14:1 Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

This scripture has been used and can be quoted by nearly every believer and we find great comfort in it, but I sometimes wonder if we have relegated this text to a text that only belongs to our future instead of appropriating its meaning into our present.

This text is all about preparation. First, the cure of a troubled heart is found in faith in God. Many in this day battle a troubled heart. In these unstable times it’s easy to give way to a troubled heart. We see the problems with the governments of the world crumbling, our financial systems in more trouble than we can pay our way out of, our educational systems no longer holding to the values of competitive lead, and many of the signs of the last days being unfolded before our eyes each night on national news. Fear can most assuredly take hold of our heart and lead us into a radical mindset of our own strength to make our way clear and straight.  

This scripture teaches us that the first step in our preparation is to believe in God. Believe in His strength, power, authority, and deliverance for our own life. If we trust the power of God and realize His power, the fears and worries we most often face will be gone, understanding that God is in control and will take care of us according to His great will for us.

Second, our future is in the hand and care of our Lord. He said, in my Father’s house are many mansions. There is a place prepared for us after this life is over that the Father has in store for us. The way you deal with your past is to appropriate your future into your present and that will destroy your past. For the Child of God this is our hope and our rejoicing. To the one who is outside of faith in Christ they cannot and do not have the hope of a glorious future, but to walk into faith in Christ gives us the hope of the future that the Father has prepared for us. He also said, “if I go, I will come again.”  This is a glorious promise for those who have trusted Him. He is coming again to take us to where He is. There is nothing that can hinder your joy if this truth is established in your heart.

Third, our present has been prepared by the Lord as much as our future has. Often we miss this truth that is in the text. Remember, He said in my Father’s house are many mansions. He isn’t preparing a home in heaven. Our home in heaven was already there when He spoke this to the disciples. So then what is he preparing? He went to the Fathers right hand to make intercession for us. His first order of business after He presented His blood as the sacrifice for sin was to pray to the Father for the giving of the Holy Spirit. The rest of this chapter teaches us that the preparation of the Lord for us is in the person of the Holy Spirit.  

The greatest preparation known to the world was the preparation of the Lord Jesus for and to us. Everything that God has ever done or will do has been a move of preparation. Therefore, we can conclude that God prepares for a prepared people. God prepares to make us a prepared people. God and God alone can make the preparation needed for you to be victorious in these last days.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Enter Into His Rest

 Reading from the Book of Hebrews 4:3
Hebrews 4:3 For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.

Those that believe God enter into His rest. Experiencing His rest is one way you can tell whether you are really 'in' faith, or whether you are just trying to 'have' faith. When you truly enter into the realm of faith, you enter into the rest of God.

Rest is freedom from excessive reasoning, struggle, fear, inner turmoil, worry and frustration, which develop beacuse of our working to do what only God can do. Being in God's rest is not neccessarily resting from physical activity, but resting in confidance in the midst of everything that goes on in life. It is a rest of the soul where the mind, will and emotions are at peace.

You can rest in God because you know He will take care of you and meet your needs. You do not know when or how and you really do not care because you are enjoying the life you have right now while God works on your problem. If you are worn out, I urge you to enter into His rest.