Hungry and Available

Description: Christians we can be assured one day to be in the presence of the Groom, are you hungry and available for that moment?

Verse: And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. 2 Peter 3-14 New Living Transition

Peter tells us in this verse today we the bride are to be waiting for the groom (Christ) at the altar pure and blameless. Do you remember the moment on your wedding day where the groom was at the altar waiting to see the beautiful bride that soon would be his forever? Do you remember the beautiful white gown and how everything was all in order for you to remember and enjoy this moment for all the days of your life?

Time was spent making sure the perfect dress was purchased just for this special moment. The father of the bride spared no expenses to make sure that the bride was the most beautiful thing on the wedding day. There would be no flaws in any detail of that day. Some even hired a wedding coordinator to insure that each moment would be priceless for all to see.

Perhaps we don’t consider what the God the Father did for this special wedding moment waiting for all of us. He gave his only Son to purchase or make payment for all the sins of mankind. This is the how we can stand pure and spotless before the groom. We are not worthy of anything, but he made sure that all or any could come to this wedding and participate. DO YOU GET WHAT I AM SAYING? All are invited, not just the friends of the bride or groom, but everyone is invited to be at this special occasion.

He said to be ready…Today are you ready for this special moment where your groom has been anxiously waiting to see you and enjoy you forever in heaven? Peter reminds us that we need to be ready and show we are doing some simple things. Love Him — not the things of the world.

Are you adaptive to the things of the Lord like — loving your neighbor like yourself? Living peacefully with your neighbor showing God’s love versus forcing them to change or else? I doubt if we remember God had a chain pulling us down to the altar, but waiting patiently as he did the the Prodigal son.

Am I living the example to not chase after the world, but live the way Jesus showed his disciples — simple and content? The world offers us many choices and every day the grinding gets tighter to force us to become something more of what the world would perhaps like to see — fitting in His way trusting God to make all things clear to us to follow Him closer everyday for everything.

Will we be found blameless? I understand why Paul said, “I must cry out to Him for forgiveness everyday!” If I let one little lie to keep me from the thing I want the most, will I be hungry enough to change to His will and not my own? Will I make myself to love unconditionally to some one who gets on my nerves everyday, when he reminds us to forgive –and forgive — and forgive again?This love is the toughest because this is tough love, if it was easy it wouldn’t be called tough love.

Prayer: Lord I am reminded there may be days or moments that we your saints will call out to you, “Come quickly Lord, or perhaps I will not have it to stay in the desire to serve you forever, and I perish from having you as Lord and my Savior!” I cannot do anything on my own, and I need you more everyday than perhaps I am willing to understand in this life. Lord help me to be the Bride you want and look forward to seeing soon. Amen

The God of More Than Enough

Description:In the Bible, God clearly shows us that He wants to meet not just our needs, but also our wants.

Verse: And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. 2 Corinthians 9:8

One of the names of our God is Jehovah Jireh, which means “the all-providing One”. He provides more than enough. The God of more-than-enough came in the flesh and walked among His people. And as He walked by the Sea of Galilee, He did not give His disciples small blessings. Look what he said to Peter,

“Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch,” (Luke 5:4) The disciple was asked to let down all his nets and in verse 7 we find that the catch was so large that other fisherman were asked to come and help bring the fish in that day.

This was just one of many examples in the bible where Jesus provided exactly what was needed and more. What about the day he fed the 5000 people before they went home from just a few loaves of bread and some fish. After Jesus prayed for the food it was passed out to feed everyone till they were full and there was leftovers to help who needed to be helped elsewhere. Again –more than enough.

Remember the wedding ceremony where all the good wine was gone and Mary asked her Son to help with the problem. She knew she put the problem in the right hand because she told the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Jesus told the servants to fill the vessels with water and as the vessels were poured out, the big complaint about the “water wine” was asked, “Why did the Host wait to serve the best wine at the end of the festivities? Again –more than enough.

God is our provider and controls “all the wealth” everything that we could even imagine and more. And it is God’s will to provide all the needs to his children. What we saw from these three illustrations, He does His job well all the time.

If there is something that is really needed in your life today, have you talked to the Creator also known as the Owner of everything about your situation. Tap into a resource that has unlimited assets available to His children today.

Prayer: Lord many of us feel we are not good enough to ask for what we need in our lives. Forgive us for not understanding the prayer you taught us to pray, “Lord give us this day our daily bread.” God help us to see the untapped resources that we can ask from you today. You are Jehovah Jireh, our Provider. Open the windows of heaven and pour out your blessings on your children and meet all their needs. Amen.

IF…..

Description: If you had it to do all over again, would you do it all the same or would you do it different?

Verse: I—yes, I alone—will blot out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again. Isaiah 43:25

Throughout life we are given possibly only one chance to get something correct or right maybe what we say is the absolute truth, but as wisdom and experience look at this thought, it has many other answers to the statement, “If I could do it all over again, I would,” possibly have different answers for all of us in this life.

I am always amazed when talking to someone before they die, when asking this question when one would answer this question with this answer, ” I would not do anything different.” Typically the smile and facial expression accompanied with tears tell me that there is no thoughts of regrets — none at all.

Possibly they lived life to the maximum, and possibly they lived or found the ability to be content with the good moments and the not so great moments. Possibly as maybe the days in their lives equaled a balanced life.

Most of us would say, “If I could have done one thing different, I would have done this.” But as our verse today mentions that when God forgave all the bad things in our life, we got that opportunity with God’s help to do things differently from a new perspective. We were empowered with our learning from our mistakes/regrets to play a new card in the game of life. And more importantly with God in my life things have the ability to move forward.

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose. Romans 8:28

Everything looks up when God is involved. Sure we all will make mistakes, but when we learn from those mistakes, we typically don’t travel down those roads again. Memories are precious but the memory I want to remember when I pass from this life to life with Christ, is that He forgave every mistake I made in life and promises me a life better than I can ever know with Him.

If I could do everything all over again, I hope I would serve God sooner than I did before to enjoy all the blessings and unconditional love for a lifetime. It’s never to late to make the decision to live for God, the good news you get to start over as a new person with Him.

Prayer: Lord I doubt that I will be granted the opportunity to do everything over, so help me do it right the first time, so when it comes to that time, I can say I would not do anything different, I would do all the same things over and say, “THANKS.” Amen

No One Knows

Description: With all the high tech gadgets that can keep us instantly informed, there is one thing that cannot be predicted.

Verse: “But the exact day and hour? No one knows that, not even heaven’s angels, not even the Son. Only the Father knows. Matthew 24:36

In a world that is spinning and changing almost daily, I cannot keep up to date with the current application for my phone, my iPad, computer or the next thing that is on Apple’s drawing board.

I love that I can get the current weather and radar to determine when to play golf or plan outdoor activities on almost any electronic device I own. But when I plan a day of golf or outside activity because of what someone else predicts, there is a good chance my plans will be altered.

I doubt that any weather man with all the new equipment could 100% accurately predict what the weather will be in our hometown or possibly even in a bigger area — our state. But we all plan what we wear, what time we leave, and if we will conduct an activity based on their prediction.

Today with three other guys looking at the prediction of the weather, we all saw the wrong prediction and did not get in a game of golf, because the weather report said it was going to be great in my backyard. I wonder how many messages they get daily when they are wrong! I am also certain when they are right about a bad storm they don’t get a message that says, “Great Job!”

But there has also been several wrong predictions about when Jesus was coming back. I am certain that the people who doubt that Jesus will come back ever, are the ones that love to prove these people are wrong. But what I wonder most is why there is so much effort to analyze and come up with good news for Christians that are ready, but a bad report for those that are not ready for Him to come back again.

Jesus said, “I don’t even know when I am coming back, only the father knows.” There are many important messages that depict the timing and season is soon, but to the minute, hour, day, month or even year is only known by the Creator himself.

It is always important for me to have my golf umbrella for days like today when the rain poured down us at the golf course. It didn’t really matter if the weather man was wrong or not– we were not going to play golf today.

One thing is certain Jesus will come again, because he told the disciples He would before he left earth. All of the things that Jesus said were proven true, and I am certain because He wanted us to be ready, when His Father told Him, “Son it’s time to go get the family and bring them home.” Only then will Jesus do what I am certain He waits to hear his Father tell Him everyday .

Today, tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year, no one knows, but we need to be ready to meet Him when he meets us in the skies. I know I will not be unhappy no matter what I am doing at that moment.

Prayer: Lord no one can tell us when your coming back to take us home, but help us to stay faithful to that appointed time. Help us Lord to help others to see the importance of being ready for this special day. Help us to love everyone like you would spreading this great news! Amen

You May Feel Alone — But Your Not

Description: During a lifetime we will experience moments that make us feel all alone. How do we know for certain that God is standing by our side?

Verse: The Lord, himself, goes before you and will be there with you. He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”Deuteronomy 31:8

Many times through life we will experience moments or seasons that no matter how many people we are connected with through social media — we still experience loneliness. You would think with all the chatting back and forth, one would never feel alone wouldn’t you?

No matter what precautions we take, no matter how well we have put together a good life, no matter how hard we have worked to be healthy, wealthy, comfortable with friends and family, and successful with our career — something will inevitably ruin it.” (Author-Timothy Keller)

Life they say is an adventure — nothing ventured nothing gained. How we experience these adventures can possibly alter our choices and have some severe consequences not only for us, but those around us.

With hate brewing everywhere we look and go, is there a chance to escape the darkness and and hatred spirit that wants to literally steal every chance of the dreams we once had, but now wonder what fate lays ahead in our next sacred breaths or will tomorrow even come?

You might wonder, why has God allowed me to experience the hurt and suffering? When in our time of despair he was never offered the first response to the accusations that murmuring in our heads. Why is the first conversation from many humans when everything comes crumbling down in their world start with questions to God, “If you really love me why do you allow this to happen to me?”

The Bible makes mention of how God stays beside us through it all in many verses:

“Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life. You stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes; with your right hand you save me.” Psalm 138:7

“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love, lives in God and God in them.” 1 John 4:16

“Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have because God has said ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

All of these verses have something uniquely in common.
1. God is there. (He never left!)
2. He is protecting you in times of trouble. (He always protects you!)
3. He is showing you His unfailing love. (Do you feel loved?)
4. He never leaves your side. (Again He Never leaves us!)
5. He goes before you to make a way. (He is looking always ahead of us.)
6. He is living inside of you. (Again He never leaves us)

I am reminded many times when I feel everything is coming down on me, that God says a few basic things; I love you and trust me. When we hurt in side because of pain and suffering the last thing anyone wants to do is believe what they know is true is STILL TRUE.

The enemy of our soul has to work overtime to remove the previous experiences that SHOULD remind us of Gods unfailing love for us in the most perilous periods of our lives. Jesus too, experienced the anger, hatred and bitterness this world wants to throw at our door step every time. I am constantly encouraged from the book of John on this subject of never being alone — as long as God is by my side.

Jesus answered them, “Do you finally believe? In fact, you’re about to make a run for it—saving your own skins and abandoning me. But I’m not abandoned. The Father is with me. I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.” John 16:31-33

My friend God has never failed me once, but I have failed Him many times. Even when I disappointed Him the most in my life, He was there for me, ready to forgive me and walk hand in hand with me to the next situation. God understands what is going on, but wants us to trust Him. He has a plan for peace and love for one another, but we need to do our part as He does his.

Prayer: God please forgive us when we blame you for all the pain and suffering attacks on us and our loved one. Holy Spirit help us to remember the scriptures so we know our Redeemer is still winning no matter what our heart is telling us. And God help me to encourage my neighbors, friends, coworkers, and those I have difficulty sharing that you love them, they just need to believe. Help them see it in my life to bring the HOPE we all need in you. Amen

Storms Are OK With God

Description: The movie,”Perfect Storm” demonstrated that when fisherman are looking for their best catch of the season their is a good possibility a storm might keep you from bringing home the gold.

Verse: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.Proverbs 3:5-6

Today I was cutting grass where I typically volunteer my time at a retreat center for ministers to have restful quiet weekends. The grass was wet this morning, and when the hills are wet extra caution is required to not slip off the hill or slide into the water areas. I decided to slow down with the Dixie Chopper to keep myself safe and the lawn to not be torn up.

As I was cutting the grass I decided to go up the hill and make my cut in a horizontal pattern, versus cutting vertically. Normally I would not do this as it requires more confidence in cutting with this type of tractor climbing up the hill. When I was half finished I really liked the affect and appearance that it was showing on the property.

God reminded me of my favorite movie, Perfect Storm, where the fisherman sometimes lost their lives and all the great catches for the season. If they didn’t make the effort and trust that there was a chance to make it, it wasn’t worth the amount of effort for them if they never put everything on the line.

I was happy with the lawn, it looked well when I was cutting differently, but it took some risks — and trust. I would have never got to enjoy the results if I was not willing to put some trust in my limited skills and that God was going to do what I couldn’t do.

Our verse today requires us to trust somethings in our lives, when we don’t have complete control, but when I started my morning with asking for God’s help and protection, I was trusting God to help me get through the things I couldn’t do on my own.

We may get frustrated when we are needing God to open a door, part the waters, or just answer our prayer, but we need to trust that God WILL ALWAYS do what He said he will do in our lives, and the most easy thing we need to do, but don’t is just one word –TRUST.

It could be as simple doing what you can, and counting on God to do all the rest, because we choose to Trust In God.

Prayer: Lord help me when I cannot see my way through the storm to trust you are right there with me for the entire journey. Forgive my disbelief, and help me to walk closer with you today more than I did before. I want to trust you with all my life. Amen.

 

This Is An Alert!!!!!!!!!!

Description: Alert signs and warnings are being revealed to the world today, sadly many do not see the warnings. Pray that the shackles will be removed from the eyes of many before it is to late.

Verse: Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man. Luke 21:36

Many times in the military there were two type of alert exercises. Practice Alert – which simulated actions that would need to be done in accordance with an approved checklist where everything was timed and evaluated. Real Alert – when a defined situation that required immediate action and things were not being simulated as they were rehearsed during practice alerts, but actions were being taken, and things were moving — FAST.

When I was growing up as a kid and then teenager I heard the coming of the Lord so much, I never thought I would actually become an adult. I also know I was moved and convicted after every sermon to get right with Jesus.

As I got older the alert message that Jesus is coming, became less heard or preached, or if there was a comment it was not mentioned with the excitement I heard as a young boy. As the years have continued to click away the message is getting more rehearsed today than years ago, but the meaning that it is for real, may not be getting the attention the Pastor, Evangelist or next door neighbor is trying to say to the person who has yet to take up the offer of free gift of salvation from God because of his son’s death on a cross for our sins.

Our verse today reminds you that we all need to be alert to all the things that are coming. The bible did mention one specific thing about His coming. He said he was coming like a thief, when no one expects, so be watching, be ready! (Revelations 16:15) No one knows when a thief will come, so they have to prepare so they will not be caught unprepared.

Alert, means ready. If we are right with God, we need to be praying for our families, coworkers, neighbors or any other person that God lays on our hearts to pray. The news is for real, this is an actual real alert and we all need to be ready and pray we can be used for others to be ready to. Jesus came that ALL might be saved. So get the message out today —NOW this is for REAL JESUS IS COMING!

Prayer: Jesus please use us to get the alert message to all we can. Reveal to us those that need this message. Help us to share the message as you would today. Help us not to preach but love them to you Lord in your way and your time. Amen