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Showing posts from May, 2018

What We Gain When We Give Up

Morning Inspiration: If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it.
Jesus, quoted in Mark 8:35 Jesus turned our view of life upside down with this important declaration! In order to truly follow Him, we have to put our own selfish desires aside. This goes completely against what is natural, so we must learn to trust in the supernatural, through the power of Jesus! God’s economy is totally opposite of ours. The more we try to gain & save up for ourselves in this world, the more we lose in eternity! Don’t think this only involves money either. Our time is even more valuable, & Jesus expects us to give it away freely, working for the good of others, in order to share the Good News of Christ with them. To the world, this all seems crazy, but God’s plan, is infinitely better than anything that comes from man.

Being Honest About Our Sin

Morning Inspiration: If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts. 1 John 1:8–10 As humans, we are naturally sinful. Unfortunately, we very often don’t even recognize our own sins. Worst of all, we realize them, but ignore & deny them! This is nothing more than self deception, & outright lying, both to ourselves & to others.Unfortunately, this is true of Christians too. We know better, & should go to Jesus immediately, asking His forgiveness & mercy. When we do, He faithfully makes us clean & brand new! Denial is sinful pride, & only separates us from God. Self humility & a humble heart, allows Jesus to give us another fresh start. ”Lord help me to clearly see the sinfullness in my l…

Show & Tell with Jesus

Morning Inspiration: Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?”
When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.” Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”
Matthew 9:10–13 Jesus didn’t just tell us how to live our life...He showed us through His personal example! Even the lowliest in society were treated to His kindness, love & respect. Religious leaders (the Pharisees) were so offended, they called the people scum! Jesus used it as a teaching opportunity, that we need to learn from in today’s world. God won’t accept ANY of the things we offer Him, if we don’t first show mercy to …

For Believers To Share With Friends

Morning Inspiration: In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. I will be found by you,” says the Lord.
Jeremiah 29:12–14 Scripture says that if we pray sincerely, God will listen!
If we honestly look for Jesus with all our heart, The Lord will make sure we find Him!
All too often, people expect God to suddenly appear in their life, on His own. They don’t realize that Jesus waits to be invited. If you have never actually prayed for Jesus to forgive you & grant you a fresh need to pray for Him to come into your heart. You can do it right now. Ask Him to ‘make His presence known’ to you...& He will! It probably won’t be a burning bush, a parting sea or a lightning strike. More likely something that ‘seems like a coincidence’; lyrics to a song on the radio that speak to your situation, a comment from a friend that really hits home, or a sudden awareness of the amazingly complex design of this world, will bring you to…

All We Need To Know About Jesus Coming Back!

Morning Inspiration: When the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking Him, “Lord, are you going to free Israel now and restore our kingdom? “The Father sets those dates,” He replied, “and they are not for you to know.”
Acts 1:6-7 Even two thousand years later, we haven’t changed much. Followers of Jesus continue to anxiously ask & wonder “When are You coming back to make this world right Lord?” God’s answer hasn’t change either! These dates & times are not for us to know. Jesus has a lot of valid reasons for shielding us from that information. A child doesn’t need the details about everything his parents are planning. As God’s children, all we have to know, is that Jesus loves us & is deserving of our complete & total trust. Scripture shows us that there are many clues He is coming very soon! That’s exciting, & should motivate us to be all about His Father’s business until the big day comes.

Self Examination for Spiritual Health

Morning Inspiration: Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith.
2 Corinthians 13:5 If we are wise, we prepare in advance for an important test, by examining our knowledge & understanding of the subject. The test of true Christianity goes much deeper. We can know the facts of our faith, & understand the details of what is expected...but still fail! If we don’t live-out our faith through our words, thoughts & actions, all that we know is useless! Honestly examining our lives for evidence of Jesus, is critically important. His Holy Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness & self control! If we don’t see those attributes growing & steadily improving in us, we have not yet made the right connection to Jesus.

No Right To Be Self Righteous

Morning Inspiration: Once we, too, were foolish and disobedient. We were misled and became slaves to many lusts and pleasures. Our lives were full of evil and envy, and we hated each other.
But—then God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. Titus 3:3–5 True Believers know better than to be proud or self righteous. Scripture repeatedly reminds us that we too, were hopelessly lost in our selfish & sinful behaviors, until Jesus saved us. His act of love had nothing to do with our own goodness, likability or effort. It was simply God’s way of showing us His amazing kindness & mercy...even when we didn’t come close to deserving it. Let’s always remember how He made us His own, when we deal with those in this world who don’t yet know our Savior. Our kindness, concern & care is a wonderful way for them to begin to see Jesus coming into their lives.

We Can't Forget How We've Been Forgiven!

Morning Inspiration: You must make allowance for each other’s faults & forgive the person who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Colossians 3:13 How easily we forget the hurtful things we did & said, before we knew Jesus! We must resist the tendency to criticize those who aren’t there yet! The Bible makes it clear, Non-Believers are not held to the same high standard we try to hold ourselves to. Even Believers who hurt us, deserve the same forgiveness we ourselves have received. When we’re offended by the words or actions of others, we should pray right away: “Jesus forgive them, they aren’t aware of what they do. I did the SAME things before I knew You. Please come into their life too!”

Don't Expect to be Honored!

Morning Inspiration: Then Jesus told them, “A prophet is honored everywhere except in his own hometown and among his relatives and his own family.” Mark 6:4 Many believers are hurt & frustrated, because their own family & friends don’t want to hear about the Word of God. They ignore us, & worse, disrespect our good intentions. If we are discouraged by this, evil wins. Yes, them not listening to the truth is wrong, but it is human nature! Even Jesus Himself couldn’t convince His OWN family to believe He was the Son of God...until He came back from the grave!
Verse 6 says: “And he was amazed at their unbelief!” Yet Jesus didn’t give up on them, or cast them out, & neither can we. He continued His ministry with others, who were willing to listen & see His Truth. He continued to pray for His family & waited for God to eventually work in their hearts. Never allow personal rejection from those you love most, to hinder your ministry to others in God’s Kingdom. Keep wo…

What We MUST Do To Follow Jesus!

Morning Inspiration: Morning Inspiration: “The truth is, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives new life from heaven. So don’t be surprised at my statement that you must be born again.” Jesus, quoted in John 3:5-7 Even though Jesus tells us not to be surprised at this statement, many still are!
He was speaking to Nicodemus, a high ranking Pharisee in the religious establishment. This was a man who had studied the Scriptures all his life...but didn’t fully understand. He had not yet transferred the knowledge from his head...into his heart! When Nicodemus realized something was missing in his faith, he approached Jesus humbly, & we should do the same.The Messiah gave it to him straight, & His truth remains today. To enter into God’s Kingdom, we MUST be born again!

How To Have A Heart For Those In Prison

Morning Inspiration: Remember those in prison, as if you were there yourself.
Hebrews 13:3 Most of us have never been inside a jail, & even the thought of visiting someone in lockup frightens us!
Yet Jesus told us to do just that in Matthew 25:36! Caring for those in prison is not something that comes easily for most of us, yet it brings great joy & reward. Over the years I’ve been blessed to be involved in some wonderful ministries that focus on serving those in long term custody. A few days ago, I was allowed to share my heart & God’s Word for 30 minutes, with over 300 inmates at the Women’s Correctional Center in Springer NM. Their attention & response to my message brought me to tears! Almost 200 are already deeply involved in transforming their lives through a personal relationship with Jesus. Many more are just getting started. One of the ladies gave us a beautiful idea, that could be a wonderful way for you to develop ‘a heart’ for those in prison. She asked if w…

Jesus Is the Key To Set Us Free!

Morning Inspiration: They arrested the apostles and put them in the public jail. But an angel of the Lord came at night, opened the gates of the jail, and brought them out. Then he told them, “Go to the Temple and give the people this message of life!” So at daybreak the apostles entered the Temple, as they were told, and immediately began teaching. Acts 5:19-21 Whether we are physically confined in a jail, or spiritually locked into painful, dangerous behaviors & attitudes...Jesus has the key to set us free! Just as He did 2,000 years ago with the first followers of Christ, God continues to use those the world see’s in a poor light, as an example of His power & might!
Regardless of your current situation, Jesus has a message & a purpose for you too!

Why We Should Pray Like Moses Today

Morning Inspiration: You have said, ‘I know you by name, and you have also found grace in My sight.’ Now therefore, I pray, if I have found grace in Your sight, show me now Your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight. And consider that this nation is Your people.”
Exodus 33:13 This prayer to God from Moses is a great example of how we should pray today, on our National Day of Prayer. Moses is basically saying “Lord if it’s true that we have found favor with You, show us your way. Help us understand you more fully & to better know exactly what You want us to do.” Moses also declared that “We are YOUR people, God!” Billy Graham often said the best way for our nation to get back on it’s feet, is to get our people on our knees! Let’s all take the time to pray deeply & sincerely to Jesus today.

Living As Jewels in Their Crown!

Morning Inspiration: After all, what gives us hope and joy, and what will be our proud reward and crown as we stand before our Lord Jesus when he returns? It is you! Yes, you are our pride and joy.
1 Thessalonians 2:19–20 Paul was writing to new followers who had come to know Jesus, through the ministry he led. This Scripture makes important points for two groups of Christians: Believers need to realize how important their faithful service to the church is to our teachers, mentors & leaders. We are a huge part of their eventual reward, a jewel in the crown they will receive in heaven! In thanks for all they’ve done for us, we should do our best to live a life that sparkles & shines for God. As Leaders, we must realize that our true reward is not money, prestige or is God’s people! We are to love them as much a Jesus does, & serve them endlessly, as the embodiment of our Lord & Savior. Their growth & success as followers of Christ, is a big portion of our…

Being Content Brings Us True Wealth!

Morning Inspiration: Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.
1 Timothy 6:6–8

I’m admit I’m incredibly blessed, yet often find myself greatly attracted to nicer homes, cars, etc. The truth is, it’s very rare to find anyone content with what they have, regardless of their financial status. Ask most people how much they need to be happy, and they will say “Just a little bit more”! A strong relationship with Jesus helps us recognize that our true riches have little to do with finances. Blessings like family, friends & good health, are much more valuable than any type of worldly wealth.
Even if we find ourselves lonely, or ill...God can show us how much we have to be grateful about. Learning to be content with what we already have, brings us a wonderful awareness of the generos…