Archive for July, 2009

July 17, 2009: 6:14 am: Daily Scripture

Numbers 13:30-33
30 But Caleb tried to encourage the people as they stood before Moses. Let’s go at once to take the land, he said. We can certainly conquer it! 31 But the other men who had explored the land with him answered, We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are! 32 So they spread discouraging reports about the land among the Israelites: The land we explored will swallow up any who go to live there. All the people we saw were huge. 33 We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. We felt like grasshoppers next to them, and that’s what we looked like to them!

14:1 Then all the people began weeping aloud, and they cried all night. 2 Their voices rose in a great chorus of complaint against Moses and Aaron. We wish we had died in Egypt, or even here in the wilderness! they wailed. 3 Why is the Lord taking us to this country only to have us die in battle? Our wives and little ones will be carried off as slaves! Let’s get out of here and return to Egypt! 4 Then they plotted among themselves, Let’s choose a leader and go back to Egypt!
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Why is it that a dog will always return to it’s vomit (Proverbs 26:11) and Christians who have lived in Egypt, want to return? Looking back it is always easier to want what we have known, even it has not always been the best.  And sometimes the idea of functioning under faith in a God we can not see, sends us running back to the world, we were saved out of. Because we can not see with our limited senses what God is doing in our lives, we doubt and fear. We see ourselves as grasshoppers in a land of giants.  The battle is lost before it began. The Israelites with this mind set died in the wilderness because of their lack of faith and vision. Focusing on what we can do under our own power will destroy the work God has set before us.  We need to have the attitude of Joshua and Caleb who stated in Numbers 14:9, “The Lord is with us! Don’t be afraid of them!”  When you are comparing what you lack to what others have, you function under intimidation and not confidence.  Let Proverbs 3:26 (For the Lord will be your confidence, And will keep your foot from being caught) be your determination to move forward into the work God has set before you.

Have a God Day!

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July 16, 2009: 6:10 am: Daily Scripture

Romans 5:1-6
Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. 2 Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of highest privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory. 3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they are good for us-they help us learn to endure. 4 And endurance develops strength of character in us, and character strengthens our confident expectation of salvation. 5 And this expectation will not disappoint us. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. 6 When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

There is a two sided reality to living a life for Christ. On one hand, we are complete in Christ when we accept His free gift of grace by faith. Because of our faith, we are given the highest privilege of sharing God’s glory.  On the other hand, we are continually growing to become more like Christ. We have the status of royalty and the duties of slaves. We experience both the presence of Christ and pressure of sin. While we enjoy the peace that can only come from being made right with God, we also struggle with temptation and pain.  Remembering our double nature in this world will keep us from becoming discouraged while we continue to work with Christ to complete this process.  We keep our eyes focused on Him and the prize of eternity with Him.  Remember, we are friends of God and that He is working to draw us closer to Him and not to condemn us for our mistakes.  God is slowly building our confidence and character for higher responsibilities for the work of His kingdom. Remember who you are in Christ and let the power of the Spirit of God within you lead you through your trails and temptations to become the royalty you are.

Have a God Day!

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July 15, 2009: 6:09 am: Daily Scripture

Matthew 11:25-30
25 Then Jesus prayed this prayer: “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding the truth from those who think themselves so wise and clever, and for revealing it to the childlike. 26 Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way! 27 “My Father has given me authority over everything. No one really knows the Son except the Father, and no one really knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.” 28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke fits perfectly, and the burden I give you is light.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Many of us today want to know how to lighten our load.  Christ gave us the formula in His Word. First, turn to Him, second give up control, and third trust Him and follow. He said, “Come to Me.”  There is no peace outside of Christ.  It is very difficult for the world to see this, but those who know Him have His Word and we know Him.  But many Christians are still living with one foot in Christ and one foot in the world.  There will be no peace for those who do not come completely to Him. To take up the yoke of Christ is to give up control to Him.  The yoke is a symbol of partnership.  Christ is right next us, yoked with us to help us with our load.  A yoke is also a symbol of guidance. Yoked with Christ, we can only move in His direction and at His pace.  But we must give Him first place and give up our control.  Which always leads us to trust Him.  If we let Christ guide and control us, we trust Him.  Without trust, we can not follow.  What is your load today?  Are you giving it to Christ and letting Him decide the direction you will go?  If not, then you are not trusting Him.  Go before Him and confess to Him and ask for direction and understanding, so your load can be lifted.

Have a God Day!

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July 14, 2009: 5:21 pm: Daily Scripture

Matthew 5:27-
27 “You have heard that the law of Moses says, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust in his eye has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 So if your eye-even if it is your good eye-causes you to lust, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your hand-even if it is your stronger hand-causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

The Old Testament law stated that it was wrong for a person to have sex with anyone but the person they were married to. (At that time in history it did not need to be stated that men marry women and women marry men. It was also law not to have sex with someone of the same sex.)  But Jesus is saying here that to have the desire to have sex outside of marriage was a sin. Jesus emphasized that if the act was wrong, then so is the intention. To be faithful to your spouse with your body but not your mind is breaking a very vital trust in your marriage. Jesus is condemning not the natural interest in the opposite sex or healthy sexual desire for your spouse, but the deliberate and repeated filling of one’s mind with pictures and images that would be evil if acted out.  It is the concentrating on these images and the thoughts of them that are sin.  It is evil and will lead to division and disharmony in your marriage.  It is dishonest and it is adultery to seek these images and think on them.  Jesus knew what we would be facing today with the accessibility of every image through the Internet. He knew what would be happening today. If you struggle with Internet pornography, but have never acted out your fanaticizes, it is still sin.  And it will destroy you as all sin leads to destruction and separation from God.  Seek God’s grace and turn from your sin and seek help.  You will need someone else who has gone through what you are going through to help you overcome it.  The stronghold that Satan has set up in your mind, with your permission, will be difficult to break. But it can be done because all things are possible through Christ.  But He is the answer and He is the only answer.  Do not wait. Do it today.

Have a God Day!

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July 13, 2009: 7:22 pm: Daily Scripture

Proverbs 2:2-11
2 Tune your ears to wisdom, and concentrate on understanding. 3 Cry out for insight and understanding. 4 Search for them as you would for lost money or hidden treasure. 5 Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain knowledge of God. 6 For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding. 7 He grants a treasure of good sense to the godly. He is their shield, protecting those who walk with integrity. 8 He guards the paths of justice and protects those who are faithful to him. 9 Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will know how to find the right course of action every time. 10 For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy. 11 Wise planning will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Wisdom comes in two ways: It is a God-given gift and also the result of a sincere search. Wisdom’s starting point is God and His Word revealed, the source of all knowledge and understanding. In that sense it is a gift from God.  We have His Word, and we have His revealed will in the Bible.  It is a gift to all who will read and obey.  But He also gives wisdom to those who seek it through His Word. But it takes effort to find and use it.  It is when we take the information about living in this world and apply it to our lives that wisdom is revealed.  True wisdom and knowledge are God’s but He will reveal them to those who are seeking for His glory.  It is in the understanding of His Word, and in the obedience of that Word that wisdom comes.  What are you doing to attain His wisdom through the given Word?  Are you seeking to know Him and apply His Word through obedience?  This should be your focus, if you claim to be His.  Search your heart and start today to make His wisdom your purpose. God tells us His mercies are new every morning, so move forward today and forget your failures from yesterday.  True wisdom can be yours if you seek the treasure of good sense that comes from God.

Have a God Day!

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July 10, 2009: 1:31 am: Daily Scripture

Habakkuk 2:9-14
9 “How terrible it will be for you who get rich by unjust means! You believe your wealth will buy security, putting your families beyond the reach of danger. 10 But by the murders you committed, you have shamed your name and forfeited your lives. 11 The very stones in the walls of your houses cry out against you, and the beams in the ceilings echo the complaint. 12 “How terrible it will be for you who build cities with money gained by murder and corruption! 13 Has not the Lord Almighty promised that the wealth of nations will turn to ashes? They work so hard, but all in vain! 14 For the time will come when all the earth will be filled, as the waters fill the sea, with an awareness of the glory of the Lord.”
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Today many live in fear of war, financial disaster and disease. Terrorist attacks are on everyone’s mind. This world has nothing to offer but pain and destruction. And yet many continue to trust in the things that their hands have made. Idolatry may seem like a sin that modern people do not commit. But it is not just bowing down to idols, it is trusting in what you have made. If we trust in what we have made, we are trusting in our own power as creator and sustainer.  If we say we worship God but put our trust in bank accounts, homes, businesses and governments, than we are idolaters. We must live above the circumstances of this world and everything it has to offer.  It is all corruptible and will someday be gone.  The only thing that will last is the love that flows through us from God the Father. Habakkuk 2:4 states, “Look at the proud! They trust in themselves, and their lives are crooked; but the righteous will live by their faith.”  Do not put your trust in the gifts God has given you.  Recognize the Giver and put your trust in Him and Him alone.  Do not let your feelings be controlled by the events happening in the world today but by faith in God’s ability to direct all things according to His purpose and His ability to give you strength.

Have a God Day!

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July 9, 2009: 1:27 am: Daily Scripture

Proverbs 1:1-7
These are the proverbs of Solomon, David’s son, king of Israel. 2 The purpose of these proverbs is to teach people wisdom and discipline, and to help them understand wise sayings. 3 Through these proverbs, people will receive instruction in discipline, good conduct, and doing what is right, just, and fair. 4 These proverbs will make the simpleminded clever. They will give knowledge and purpose to young people. 5 Let those who are wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. And let those who understand receive guidance 6 by exploring the depth of meaning in these proverbs, parables, wise sayings, and riddles. 7 Fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. Only fools despise wisdom and discipline.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

In this age of information, knowledge is plentiful, but wisdom is scarce.  Wisdom means far more than simply knowing a lot. It is a basic attitude that affects every aspect of your life. The foundation of knowledge is to fear the Lord, to honor and respect God, to live in awe of His power, and to obey His Word. The will of the Lord should be the controlling principle for your understanding of the world, your attitudes, and your actions.  Because our actions speak louder than our words, we should be mindful of every thing that we do.  Measuring what we do to the attitudes and actions of Christ.  People around us will see Christ in us more by what we do than what we say.  Most people know more than they live, and Christians are no better.  Start applying the things you know are true and you will be truly wise.  Pick one truth from the Word of God and apply it to your actions and see what a difference it will make in your witness of Christ in you.

Have a God Day!

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July 8, 2009: 1:22 am: Daily Scripture

Psalms 150
1  Praise God in his heavenly dwelling; praise him in his mighty heaven!
2  Praise him for his mighty works; praise his unequaled greatness!
3  Praise him with a blast of the trumpet; praise him with the lyre and harp!
4  Praise him with the tambourine and dancing; praise him with stringed instruments and flutes!
5  Praise him with a clash of cymbals; praise him with loud clanging cymbals.
6  Let everything that lives sing praises to the Lord!
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Although the Bible invites us to praise God. we often aren’t sure how to go about it. Here, several ways are suggested: by singing, dancing, or playing musical instruments.  Music and song were a very important part of Old Testament worship.  David introduced music into the Tabernacle and Temple services. The music was loud and joyous as evidenced by the list of instruments in this scripture.  Are you praising God with joy and singing? It should be a part of what you do everyday.  God enjoys His people and He enjoys our praise.  Not because He needs it, but because we do.  When we praise Him, we focus on Him and not on ourselves or our problems.  Praising God brings us into right focus with who He is and what our purpose is.  We are His people and we are to praise Him.  It is an act of obedience and brings us great peace.  Make it a part of what you do daily to show your love for Him.

Have a God Day!

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July 7, 2009: 1:21 am: Daily Scripture

Good Morning!

1 Peter 2:
9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are a kingdom of priests, God’s holy nation, his very own possession. This is so you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light. 10 “Once you were not a people; now you are the people of God. Once you received none of God’s mercy; now you have received his mercy.” 11 Dear brothers and sisters, you are foreigners and aliens here. So I warn you to keep away from evil desires because they fight against your very souls. 12 Be careful how you live among your unbelieving neighbors. Even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will believe and give honor to God when he comes to judge the world.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

Even though it has been over 2000 years, one thing we know is that Jesus Christ will return.  We do not know the time, but we do know He will come again.  Many did not believe He was coming the first time and more people today do not believe He is coming again.  But those who know Him, know He will keep His Word.  Are you telling others that He is coming?  Are you letting the world know that you believe He is going to return?  If not that may one thing that is hindering your growth in Christ.  There are two seas in the area around Israel.  One is the Sea of Galilee and the other is the Dead Sea.  The Sea of Galilee has water coming into it and the Jordan river flows out of it.  So this sea is alive with plants and fish.  It is a sea which people can make a living.  But the Dead Sea is just that dead.  The Jordan river flows into it, but there is nothing flowing out.  There are no plants or fish.  It provides no life around it.  Are you like the Dead Sea with everything coming in and nothing going out?  If you live for Christ and learn more about Him, but don’t share what you know, then you are only receiving and not giving.  You need to receive and then give to remain alive.  Psalm 96:2 tells us, “…Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.” Start by just letting people know what God has done in your life.  Tell them the blessing He has given you and how your life has changed.  Let the love of God flow out of you and well as in and it will make a difference in your life.

Have a God Day!

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July 6, 2009: 12:54 am: Daily Scripture

Deuteronomy 8:1-5
“Be careful to obey all the commands I am giving you today. Then you will live and multiply, and you will enter and occupy the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors. 2 Remember how the Lord your God led you through the wilderness for forty years, humbling you and testing you to prove your character, and to find out whether or not you would really obey his commands. 3 Yes, he humbled you by letting you go hungry and then feeding you with manna, a food previously unknown to you and your ancestors. He did it to teach you that people need more than bread for their life; real life comes by feeding on every word of the Lord. 4 For all these forty years your clothes didn’t wear out, and your feet didn’t blister or swell. 5 So you should realize that just as a parent disciplines a child, the Lord your God disciplines you to help you.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.) 1996.

We are more than just a body, we also have a spirit and a soul.  Our spirit is the part of us that is in unity with God when we become His child through salvation.  Our spirit is immediately connected to God forever.  Our soul is the part of us that we must work out our salvation as stated in Philippians 2:12, “…work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” Our soul is our mind, our will and our emotions.  But our body is the part of us that will not wait for anything.  When we are hungry, we must eat, when we thirst, we must drink, and when we are tired we must sleep.  Our bodies do not see anything outside of the needs.  Without food, water or rest we would die.  So we all meet the needs of the body.  It is a fact of life and can not be ignored.  But God is telling us not to forget the other parts of us.  “Real life comes by feeding on every Word of God.”  God is speaking to the other parts of us our soul and our spirit often go hungary.  Our spirit needs to be feed by learning the Word of God and spending time in worship to Him.  Feeding our soul takes a little more work and requires that we apply what we have leaned in the Word.  In other words we live the Word.  Whenever we learn a truth and then apply it or make it a part of what we do, we are feeding our spirit and our soul.  Most Christians can tell you a lot about what is in the Word, but do not apply it to their lives. They know more than they live.  Our mind, our will and our emotions, must each be worked on individually and feed with truth and that truth must be applied into each areas of our soul.  The Word is full of instructions from God on how to think, feel and surrender our will to Him and others.  When we eat food, it is taken in, but it is also digested and becomes a part of us.  God is telling us to do the same for the spirit and the soul.   Start by taking in or eating the Word of God and then digest it or make it a part of what you do and who you are.

Have a God Day!

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