Tag Archive | church

Micah 3:8 ” But as for me, I am filled with power, with the Spirit of the Lord, and with justice and might, to declare to Jacob his transgression, to Israel his sin.”

The OT prophets had it pretty rough.  They faced rebuke and persecution from all sides, especially when their message was the total opposite of what the people wanted to hear.  So where did this boldness come from?  How were these mild-mannered, many times even timid men able to stand before Kings and High Priests proclaiming God’s Word?   It was the Holy Spirit within, enabling them to go boldly into battle for the Lord.  Are you brave enough to pray the prayer the Apostles did in Acts 4:29?  ” Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak Your Word with great boldness.”  Boldness empowered by the Holy Spirit will change your perception.  For you’ll no longer have your limited vision, but God’s.

Luke 21: 3-4 ” ‘I tell you the truth,’ He said, ‘this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.’ “

Anytime sacrificial giving is mentioned, people get real antsy.  It’s not that we don’t want to give to Kingdom work…it’s just that we’re selfish.  Now you’re probably thinking I’m talking about money…No, I’m not!  I’m talking about something far more valuable to you than money…it’s your time.  We’ll happily give to charitable organizations, relief funds, and soup kitchens…but ask us to volunteer our time and that’s a different story.  It says in II Corinthians 8:12, “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.”   God wants you,  not your money…He wants you to volunteer rather than just donate to the cause…He wants you to give sacrificially of your most valuable resource…yourself.

Judges 6:27 ” So Gideon took ten of his servants and did as the Lord told him. But because he was afraid of his family and the men of the town, he did it at night rather than in the daytime.”

God had instructed Gideon to tear down his father’s  false idols…and Gideon had obeyed, in a fashion.  Instead of doing it in broad daylight though, he did it under cover of darkness, …all because of fear.  He was afraid of what others would think.  Fearful of retaliation, Gideon wanted to obey God, but also wanted to please people.  It’s impossible to be a people pleaser and obey God at the same time…for you end up compromising yourself and your integrity.

Job 6: 2-3 ” Then Job replied: ‘If only my anguish could be weighted and all my misery be placed on the scales! It would surely outweigh the sand of the seas – no wonder my words have been impetuous.’ “

The words of desperation, grief, and discouragement are heavy…they weigh us down to the point we can hardly breathe.  This oppressiveness is only compounded by impulsive, frantic actions as we search for answers.  It doesn’t help either if we’re sleep deprived.  Sometimes the very best thing you can pray for is peace and rest.  When our minds and bodies are frenetic,  balance and reason can go out the window.  Asking the Lord for peace, hope, and sleep can bring us back into alignment.

Psalm 142: 1-2 ” I cry aloud to the Lord; I lift up my voice to the Lord for mercy. I pour out my complaint before Him; before Him I tell my trouble.”

I used to be a long distance runner…and during those hours on the back roads, I’d yell at God.  At the time,  I was in the middle of a very personal hell and wanted God to know just how scared and powerless I felt.  In my head, I knew the Lord was well aware of the situation…but in my heart, I needed to verbalize the pain.  Baring my soul out loud to God was a way I could express feelings I had never spoken to anyone…no one.  Putting words to  pent-up fear and terror helped me gain perspective.  By listening to my own words of anguish, my plight was somehow validated within me.  Yes, I yelled at God, but He quietly listened to every word I spilled out…every inner most feelings I couldn’t tell anyone else.  For God was there and He listened…He didn’t judge or admonish…He listened.

Isaiah 35:8 ” And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way; wicked fools will not go about on it.”

So what exactly is “the Way” and holiness mean to you?  Is it being committed to the Lord with all your heart, soul, and mind?  Is it a way of life that exemplifies Godly actions and behaviors?  The Way is a Highway…a road less traveled by most, but a life-long journey for the upright.

Romans 8:32 ” He Who did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for us all – how will He not also, along with Him, graciously give us all things?”

What would have happened to humankind if God had felt Jesus was exempt?  Without the tremendous sacrifice, on the part of both God and Jesus Christ, we would be lost in our sins.  The willingness of God to hand over  Son on our behalf  can be found in one of the Bible’s most recognizable scriptures, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” ( John 3:16-17)  God may have not wanted to hand Jesus over…Jesus may have not wanted to go through the horrible torture and crucifixion on the Cross…but They did…and in the process, saved your soul from hell.