Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Proverbs 18 8-18-18

August 18, 2018

The LORD has SO MUCH MORE in store for us we can’t even fathom! Don’t settle for less!!!

Proverbs 18:10 The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.

This world is like a preschool; we are allowed to do pretty much what we want. There are kids who “rule the roost,” kids who push the boundaries, kids who play by themselves; there are also kids who want to be with the Teacher. It is these kids who learn all kinds of neat stuff and get to bask in the attention of the Teacher. I want to be one of these kids.

As we talk to our Teacher, we share our problems, our hurts, our dreams, and our devotion. The Teacher shares with us the radiance of His glory, which includes His abounding love, joy and peace. He whispers hope in the words, “Don’t give up; just a little further.”

What promises keep me going? I’m glad you asked!

1 Corinthians 2:9 However, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him”—

John 16:12-15 “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. [13] But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. [14] He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. [15] All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.

Isaiah 65:17-19 Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. [18] But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy. [19] I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more.

God has so much more in store for us. Let’s focus on what is to come and be content with what we have. Satisfied? No; content? Yes. Let’s stay close to the Teacher today.

Proverbs 17 8-17-18

August 17, 2018

What are we willing to do without in order to learn discipline in an area of our life? Man up!

Proverbs 17:1 Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife.

We can choose to limit ourselves, such as refraining from eating carbs, or we can be forced to be limited, such as with an allergy, financial restrictions, or bad health.

Either way, there is something to learn from it. Many people blame God when bad times come. Aren’t we supposed to “name it and claim it” and we’ll get what we want? Actually, when we came to Christ, we gave up those dreams in order to receive an inheritance that won’t spoil or fade (1 Peter 1:4).

What Americans don’t realize is that most people in the world live below poverty level. See for yourself:

Almost half the world — over three billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day.

At least 80% of humanity lives on less than $10 a day.

From http://www.globalissues.org/article/26/poverty-facts-and-stats

So, taking physical prosperity “off the table,” what about spiritual prosperity? How do we prosper spiritually? There’s really only one way:

Philippians 3:10-11 I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, [11] and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.

Many times, God removes the things we want in order to change our desires. The question is: Are we willing to give up what we want for what He wants for us?

Here’s a verse we can trust:

Psalms 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.

If we make HIM our goal, then He will make knowing Him happen. HE WILL BECOME OUR DELIGHT!

Let’s seek Him today making Him the object of our worship.

Proverbs 16 8-16-18

August 16, 2018

God’s plan is no longer a mystery. Doesn’t it make sense to live according to His plan?

Proverbs 16:4-5 The LORD works out everything for his own ends— even the wicked for a day of disaster. [5] The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.

Lest we take offense at God for His “unfairness” over being God, let us remember that we are His creations along with everything in our universe! Let us be grateful that He has made us in His own image, with a soul capable of choosing to love Him and serve Him willingly. No other animal or part of His creation gets they kind of choice!

How, then, should we live?

Proverbs 16:18-19 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. [19] Better to be lowly in spirit and among the oppressed than to share plunder with the proud.

We cannot base our lives on what we see in this world. We must use our spiritual eyes to see eternally. This world is a testing zone. Ever since the Fall, mankind is only passing through. We must remember:

Proverbs 16:25 There is a way that seems right to a person, but in the end it leads to death.

Only God’s way is the right way. Let’s “go to Him” in prayer (really, we just turn our attention to Him) and Bible study (His revealed word to us!) and follow closely to Him, keeping our eyes fixed on Him.

Colossians 1:27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

Proverbs 15 8-15-18

August 15, 2018

Right thinking is as important as right doing. It’s just harder. It requires continuous submission to The Spirit.

Proverbs 15:28 The heart of the righteous weighs its answers, but the mouth of the wicked gushes evil.

Getting control of our mouths is the first step in becoming holy. We have received His righteousness (He lives inside us); our goal now is to be holy as He is holy (1 Peter 1:15-15). Being holy means they we must not only act like Jesus, but THINK like Jesus.

Giving up the way we think is very personal. It is also at the very heart of who we think we are. What we forget is that who we are has ALWAYS been tainted by sin, therefore we have no idea how we are really supposed to be. Only Jesus does. Hence, our faith. We must trust Him to make us into who we were always intended to be: Like Christ!

Know this: He IS recreating us. Whether we enjoy the process or not depends on us.

Romans 8:29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.

2 Corinthians 3:18 And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

Let’s allow Him to change the way we think. It will change the way we feel about others and about all kinds of things, and it will change the way we talk. In doing so, we will be on our way to being like Jesus; we will be holy.

Link about 1 Cor. 11:1

August 14, 2018

Proverbs 14 8-14-18

August 14, 2018

Christ in us does the world little good unless we work to show Him to the world. Our lives are to be Him loving them through us!

Proverbs 14:16 A wise man fears the LORD and shuns evil, but a fool is hotheaded and reckless.

Before Christ came, people served God more out of fear than any other reason. Today, we serve Christ out of gratefulness. A fool (one who rejects Christ) acts out of his own high opinion of himself whereas Christians, categorically speaking, act out of Christ’s love for others. We are all about showing Christ to the world!

Let’s look at some Scriptures:

Matthew 5:14-16 “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. [15] Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. [16] In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

1 Corinthians 10:31-33 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. [32] Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God— [33] even as I try to please everybody in every way (pointing to Christ). For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved [his whole point]. [11:1] Imitate me as I imitate Christ.

Paul WAS their New Testament. We now have the written Word. How did Paul imitate Christ? He actually allowed Christ to live through Him (Col. 1:27-29). People saw Christ’s love emanating from Paul. We are to emanate like him.

To emanate: Christ’s love flowing out, issuing forth, proceeding from us, as from Christ’s throne or Himself; the origin of that love is Himself. The point: His love pouring forth through us to the world.

We are like coals in a smoker. The closer we are to the flame, the hotter we burn. Following Christ is like that. The closer we follow, the more we emanate Christ.

Jesus is excited to live in us and to be about transforming us into His image. Let’s be willing students! Don’t forget: 🎵”You’re the only Jesus some will ever see, you’re the only words of Christ some will ever read, so let them see in you the One in whom is all they’ll ever need, ’cause you’re the only Jesus some will ever read.”🎵

For a humorous picture of us imitating Paul imitating Christ, go to

Proverbs 13 8-13-18

August 13, 2018

Most relationships, particularly marriage, break down at the conversation level. We forget to love with words.

Proverbs 13:10 Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.

Pride is a big issue. It is at the heart of each of us. It’s hard to get away from ourselves! Yet, that is exactly what we must do. Christ wants to change our disposition and our temperament. He wants us to be like Him. The best way to circumvent our pride is to practice being Christ-like BEFORE pride rears its ugly head. A banner verse/passage for us might be:

Ephesians 4:2-3 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. [3] Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.

We MUST start early in the day (and conversation) being kind and pleasant. Pretend that people are new acquaintances–it really helps (we really don’t know others as well as we think 🤔 we do). Some might call it “faking it,” but I prefer to call it “faith-ing it.” We are trusting Jesus to change our natures to His nature, to renew our minds, and to shine through us. Dying to self is the biggest challenge we face everyday, all day.

Remember that God has us where we are and who we are with for a reason. Let’s trust Him and work hard to be like Him today.

Proverbs 12 8-12-18

August 12, 2018

Our position in Christ is sealed and secure! Our relation to Christ is getting to know Him and learning to trust Him.

Proverbs 12:21 No harm overtakes the righteous, but the wicked have their fill of trouble.

It seems like a good “Prosperity Gospel ” verse, doesn’t it? The problem is that there are too many verses that reveal suffering in store for those who follow Christ:

Philippians 1:29 For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him,

2 Corinthians 1:5 For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

1 Thessalonians 3:3-4 so that no one would be unsettled by these trials. You know quite well that we were destined for them. [4] In fact, when we were with you, we kept telling you that we would be persecuted. And it turned out that way, as you well know.

2 Timothy 3:12 In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,

John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Don’t confuse suffering with God’s wrath or even His discipline. Suffering is what happens on the outside; we are interested in what is going on inside us!

Our POSITION in Christ is taken care of for us by the work of the Holy Spirit. HE is the Agent of transformation:

  1. He wakes us up,
  2. He picks us up and
  3. Moves us across the Great Divide,
  4. He cleans us up,
  5. He gives us a white robe, sandals, and the ring of sonship,
  6. He signs adoption papers and receives us with gladness and great joy!
  7. He even seats us with Him in heavenly places!
  • Our relation to Christ is another matter. It is the interactive part of our relationship. We are blameless (Jude 24), but we are not mature and complete in Christ, yet. He takes great pleasure in recreating Himself in us, revealing Himself and His will to us, walking us through hard times (and carrying us through others), and teaching us how to be like Him by revealing Himself to us. We may be suffering on the outside, but inwardly, we are being made into His image.
  • 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. [17] For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. [18] So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

    Today, let’s fix our eyes on the eternal: our relationship with Him and our home in Heaven–IN OUR NEW BODIES! No more sin nature! Won’t that be something?!

    Proverbs 11 8-11-18

    August 11, 2018

    We have dual natures. God will eventually reign supreme in our hearts, but as what cost?

    Proverbs 11:3 The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.

    Duplicity is having dual, and conflicting, sides. We Christians have a black dog (our “old man”) inside of us along with a white dog: the Holy Spirit. Which one leads depends on which one we feed.

    Integrity is who we are when no one else is looking. God gave us the desire to think and do rightly when He gave us His righteousness, and He gives us the ability to succeed through His Spirit within us. Learning to turn from dark thoughts and turn to Him–regardless of the draw of our natural desires–is what the Christian life is all about.

    Each Saturday, I pray this prayer for you:

    “Lord, I pray for my brothers and sisters in You that they would be categorically committed to You, devoted to Your Way, and convinced (fully persuaded) that You are worth following. May their lives now be simply a shifting and sorting of priorities, a trading of their thoughts, life, will, dreams, aspirations, agenda, schedules, goals, desires, pleasures–every aspect–for Yours. Thank You, Jesus!” This prayer is based on four Scriptures: 1 Peter 1:7, Romans 8:18, Romans 4:20-21, and Acts 20:24. Please take the time to look them up, especially Acts 20:24!

    When we get discouraged, let us remember that JESUS KNOWS our struggle and loves us anyway–in fact, He’s CRAZY about us and is excited to be with us helping us to become like Him!!! Let’s focus on that reality, shall we!

    Proverbs 10 8-10-18

    August 10, 2018

    Showing love and respect. Easy to say, hard to practice. Even so, God wants us to learn. It is His heart!

    Proverbs 10:12 Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.

    Speaking to one another in loving tones–and looks–and with respect is something that we must learn. We must realize that hateful feelings come from our sin nature. When we speak from how we feel, it’s usually not God-honoring! Instead, we take every thought captive for Christ, even TO Christ. His Spirit empowers us to take control of our mouths by controlling our thoughts!

    2 Corinthians 10:4-5 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. [5] We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

    He even offers to transform our minds:

    Ephesians 4:22-24 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; [23] to be made new in the attitude of your minds; [24] and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

    This is not a self-help process. Quite the contrary! We learn to lean on Jesus for everything in all situations, to take care of every thought, and to guide our conversations.

    Let’s put our Christianity into practice today by calling on Him for every word and giving Him command of every thought. To follow Him IS WHY we became Christians, right?