Tag Archives: honor

Life Lesson: August 1

31 Jul

Meditate
Read Mark 1:9-13.
At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.  Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him.

Meditate on the words of God to Jesus, “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”

Sing
Chorus 1
Step into the water
Wade out a little bit deeper
Wet your feet in the water of His love
Step into the water
Wade out a little bit deeper
Come join angels singing praises
To the Lamb of God

Verse 1
It is time we the people
Stand up for what is right
It is time we squared our shoulders back
Raised our swords to fight
For the Bible is our weapon
And the Spirit is our shield
The church needs more of its members
To be workers in the field

Verse 2
There is vict’ry for the Christian
Who walks the narrow way
There has been a prize appointed
For the soul who does not stray
Oh I want to live for Jesus
Be all that I should be
So that I can rest with Him
Forever live eternally

Message
My parents often tell me how proud they are of me and it makes me feel good. One day in particular, my Mother told me that she would be at an upcoming worship service because she “loves it when I lead worship”. Following that service, she introduced me to a couple of her friends and with a smile on her face and an arm around my waist said, “This is my daughter!” My Mother’s comments that day made me feel special. They also gave me a new sense of purpose. I wanted to continue to make my Mother proud. Oh, I have failed and I will fail again, but I know my Mother is still proud and I desire to keep on trying and working to improve.

God, by way of the dove, put his hand around Jesus’ waist and said, “This is my son!” and “I love who you are and what you do.” What strength that must have given Jesus as he entered the wilderness.

Have you been baptized? Have you experienced God’s hand around your waist and his smile as he says, “You are my child and I love you. With you I am well pleased.” Hold on to this as you press through life and strive to do what you are called to do. Take God’s love as your strength.

Blessing
There is someone whom you have influence over. It may be a child, parent, sibling, fellow-worker, or someone else. Contact them and let them know what you like about them. E-mail or letter is OK, but verbally would be best. If you can do it face to face, even better!

Move
Step into the water (take a shy and tentative step forward)
Wade out a little bit deeper (take another step with a little more confidence)
Wet your feet in the water of His love (wiggle your toes in the water)
Step into the water (take a step with full confidence)
Wade out a little bit deeper (take a giant step forward)
Come join angels singing praises (bathe in the water)
To the Lamb of God (raise hands and stretch in the air)

Create
Take five 3×5 cards. Ask God what encouraging message to write on each one. Put them upside down on the table. Ask God to bring a person to mind and then pick a card. Send that card to the person.

Nourish
Drink extra water today. As you drink the water, remember your baptism and be thankful.

Rest
Find 10 minutes to be still. Do nothing during this time. This is God’s time to renew you in mind, body and spirit.

Recreation
Find and enjoy some water. Find a body of water, fountain, aquarium or small fish pond. Enjoy the water by boating, swimming, just watching it. Other options might be to look at pictures of water or soak in the tub. Enjoy the experience of God’s creation of water.

Pray
If there are areas of your life that you know are not pleasing to God, write them down on a piece of paper. Confess each area as sin and repent. Claim God’s forgiveness and his strength to stand against the enemy in these areas. Burn the paper in a safe place.

Snacks
Make jello (sugar free). It’s fun!

World Prayer
Pray for all of the coastal regions of the world.

Sleep
As you go to sleep tonight, pray that your rest will be totally refreshing.

From morning until night, God wants us to worship and commune with Him. Start your day in His Word and then weave throughout the day these elements of devotion, worship, contemplation and service to others.
_______

LYRICS CREDIT:
CCLI # 283314, CCLI Song # 44429, Kirk L. Talley, © 1981 Homeward Bound Music. 1984 Assigned To Kirk Talley Music (Admin. by Integrated Copyright Group, Inc.)

Life Lesson: April 24

24 Apr

Be amazed by God. Remember His graciousness toward you.

Meditate
Read Revelation 1:4-8. Read verse 7 over several times.

Sing
Thou Art Worthy¹

Thou art worthy. Thou art worthy.
Thou art worthy, oh Lord.
To receive glory, glory and honor,
glory and honor and power.
For Thou hast created,
hast all things created.
Thou hast created all things.
And for Thy pleasure they are created,
for Thou art worthy, oh Lord.

Message
As much as we hate to admit it, we often tend to become self-centered in our relationship with Jesus. We pray for things we need or we pray intercessory prayers for the needs of others. We thank God for the things He does for us and we get excited about the work that the Holy Spirit is doing in our lives. All of this is good and it has its place, but how often do we just spend time considering the greatness of God? Spend today being amazed by the wonderful God we serve. Instead of expecting God to fill us and speak to us today, give Him your full attention and your praise.

Blessing
Bless the Lord today by serving someone in need.

Move
Sing the song, Alleluia², and move around in worship to God.

Create
Make a list of the attributes of God from A-Z

Nourish
Share your meal with someone and see if you can spend the time talking about how good God is rather than talking with about your troubles or your neighbor.

Rest
Find 10 minutes to be still. Do nothing during this time. This is God’s time to renew you in mind, body and spirit.

Recreation
Go out and take pictures of God’s great creation. If it is a dark, gloomy or rainy day, go anyway and find God in nature. He is there in the great and the small.

Pray
Pray prayers of praise today. These are prayers that only reflect on God and His greatness.

Snacks
Fast from your snack today and spend time praising the name of Jesus. Feed your soul by looking at song, hymns, or Scriptures that speak of praising Jesus.

World Prayer
Using a map or globe, look at each area of the Earth. Place your hand on each part and pray for God’s rule and reign over that area.

Sleep
As you fall asleep tonight, repeat the words of today’s song, Thou Art Worthy

From morning until night, God wants us to worship and commune with Him. Start your day in His Word and then weave throughout the day these elements of devotion, worship, contemplation and service to others.

________________________
LYRICS CREDIT: 
1) Thou Art Worthy, Pauline Michael Mills, CFO Sings, pg 232; 2) Alleluia, CFO Sings pg 10

Debt Free Lives, Part 1

3 Jul

Even now, I struggle with the title of this chapter. Sin and debt have become so ingrained in our lives and such an acceptable state, we can not imagine life without it. Maybe, in all honesty, we do not want to, but Galatians 5:1 tells us that “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” Yet every day, we make choices to live in the slavery of sin. With everything we do, think or say, we are faced with the choice to do it God’s way or do it our way and more often than not, we choose our way over God’s.

Sin is disobedience, plain and simple. Sin is doing, thinking or holding on to what we should not, even when we know it. Sin is doing it my way instead of God’s way. As previously mentioned, sin is an interior issue, not an exterior one. James 1:14-15 “Each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.” 1 John 1:6, “If we claim to have fellowship with him (God) yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.” I heard a sermon recently where the preacher (not my Father or Husband) was talking about sin. Yet, he did not call it sin. He talked about mistakes and errors in judgment. He talked about those “oops” that we do, not doing things right and that we are only human. It is time that we faced sin head on, call it what it is and determine that it is time to get a handle on our own evil desires. I know the world thinks there are gray areas, but a good rule of thumb is, if we have to ask if what we are doing is wrong, we probably should stop and run away. Stop making excuses and let’s begin to take God seriously.

In order to take God seriously, we need to understand what God say about sin. The Word is very clear and we should have no difficulty with interpretation. Get ready, these are tough words, from Romans 1:18 – 2:6 “But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness. They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.

“Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles.

“So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen. That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.

“Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents. They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy. They know God’s justice requires that those who do these things deserve to die, yet they do them anyway. Worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.

“You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you who judge others do these very same things. And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things. Since you judge others for doing these things, why do you think you can avoid God’s judgment when you do the same things? Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?

“But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin, you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself. For a day of anger is coming, when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. He will judge everyone according to what they have done. He will give eternal life to those who keep on doing good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers. But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and instead live lives of wickedness. There will be trouble and calamity for everyone who keeps on doing what is evil—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile.* But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism.” (New Living Translation)

We have been taught that sin is a part of life and we have no control over it. “We are only human” and “God made me this way” have become our most favored excuses to remove our responsibility and keep doing what we are doing. Let’s be honest, we sin because the consequences seem so far away, everyone else is doing it, it seems harmless, and generally sin is fun. We would not do it, if it was not fun and if it did not give us some pleasure in return. Even if just for a short time. Watch the TV or read a magazine and you will soon understand that our whole purpose in life is to make ME happy. Society has developed a serious idol worship. The idol of self. Everything we do, we do for our comfort, progress and personal wellbeing. (continued in Debt Free Lives, Part 2)

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