Thursday, March 28, 2019

Are We Loving One Another?

Are We Loving One Another?

What do you do when someone comes to you and says, “I’m worried, I’m afraid, I’m hurting or I’m depressed?”  Do you have to personally experience their specific pain or suffering to be able to listen or care for them? Do you think that the only people that can help those in distress are pastors, elders or professional therapists? 

The Bible makes our response clear towards a brother or sister in need, “. . . love one another earnestly from a pure heart. . .” (1 Peter 1:22,23). The love indicated here by Peter is the love of choice and to meet the needs of another with a fervent, unfeigned love. Fervent is defined as: having or displaying a passionate intensity and unfeigned means: genuine; sincere. We don’t need to have all the answers to be able to come alongside someone and love them through their sorrow. We need to love them where they are and know that God commands us to do so in Scripture. John 13:34; 15:12,17; Romans 12:10; 1 Thessalonians 4:9; 1 John 4:7 are Christ’s command to us to “love one another.” Our responsibility is not to “fix” the person who’s suffering but to love them as Christ has loved us.

Love is portrayed by concern, compassion, sympathy, and affection. Paul teaches us in 1 Corinthians 13 that love is patient, kind, and never ending.  Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. The theme that resonates throughout the entire Bible is the love that God has for His own, an unconditional love. This sincere and genuine love motivates one to share Christ with those that are lost and care for those that are hurting and hopeless.


Lord, may my heart be caring, my actions be kind and my desired purpose be in loving others to the glory of God.


Friday, March 22, 2019

Why Read God's Word?

Why Should I Read the Bible?
You may be asking, “How should I read the Bible?” The answer is clear. The Word of God should not be read as a self help manual determining how you are to live out the perfect Christian life. The Bible provides hope through the pages of its narratives as well as through the timeless truths which offer grace and mercy to fallen man. It is written about OT people that are in captivity, suffering in misery and crying out in utter despair. Yet, they see and experience the faithfulness of God through extensive hardships and pain. The Apostle Paul suffered many difficulties for the advancement of the Gospel nonetheless, he proclaimed encouragement and comfort through the faithfulness of Christ. A believer, living to the will of God, rests implicitly on his Creator's faithfulness to accomplish what is set before him by faith. 


We need to see the sinful state of our existence as condemned without hope, (Romans 3:11-18). Yet, God’s wonderful redeeming love is shown throughout Scripture through the timeless story of His precious Son, Jesus Christ. We are assured of His birth, His death on the cross, His miraculous resurrection and glorious ascension into heaven. The Bible is most advantageous when read through the sorrows of life. But, in spite of all the heartaches, this precious book gives hope to the hopeless, rest to the weary and peace to those struggling in the midst of life’s storm. 

The Bible is clearest when reading as a weary pilgrim in need of Christ not being clouded by our self-righteousness. If we understand who we are and who He is, we will not read the Bible to get a quick fix. Scripture should be read through the lens of the Gospel, seeing Christ’s love bestowed upon mankind in all that He accomplished on the cross. Galatians 1:3-4a says, “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins. . .”


Lord, may I read Your Word through the eyes of love and gratitude.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Suffering for His Sake

Suffering for His Sake

Philippians 1:27,29 
Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel; For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake...

Paul, a citizen of heaven, wants the Philippian church to realize that the world around them can only see the true Gospel by what they view in their lives. We are to conduct ourselves in a manner worthy of the Gospel of Christ. The most powerful weapon against the enemy of Christ is the consistent life of a believer living out the Gospel day after day.  

The sufferings of the Philippian Christians were mentioned more than once by Paul in his writings.  If we suffer for Christ’s sake, we are to consider it a precious gift from Him. We are to labor together for the Gospel’s sake and not against one another. We are to be of one spirit and one mind, standing against any opposition of the Gospel Satan may bring (Matthew 5:11-12). 

Paul is encouraging believers that when they stand for the sake of the Gospel they will suffer persecution. He instructs them to be consistent in living their lives worthy of the Gospel and in the end, they will receive a great reward. “If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us:” (II Timothy 2:12 KJV). Paul instructs the people that there is an enemy that wants to steal this treasure from them and cripple the ministry of the Gospel; but God gives the grace we need to go through any trial and enables us to have joy in the midst of every battle.


Lord, may I ever walk worthy of the Gospel of Christ though trials may disrupt my path and obscure my way. 

Friday, March 8, 2019

Are You Fearful?

Are You Fearful?

                              Proverbs 29:25 

“The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe.”


The Definition of Fear: An unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat. A feeling of anxiety concerning the outcome of something or the safety and well-being of someone.

How often do we experience the crippling effect of fear? What circumstances or situations send us into uncontrollable waves of anxiety? Can we let go of this overwhelming fear or, are we afraid of what might happen? Does the fear of man have such power over our lives that it paralyses us to the point of despair? We are encouraged through the Word of God to depend upon the power of God which keeps us from the fear of man. 


May I assure you that God is working in and through every aspect of your life. You can trust Him with all that He has allowed to come across your path. It is not easy to trust God in times of adversity because no one enjoys pain or suffering to be sure. Having such a relationship with a God that allows you to walk through any trial with confidence, gives assurance that He is there with you through every situation. God never walks away and leaves you to chance or random circumstances, but moves in your life to accomplish His purpose and bring glory due His name.


We must not fear the unknown, nor sickness, nor the loss of life, nor any unfavorable experience laid at our feet–––for with all adversity comes a deeper relationship with our God. His faithfulness sustains us for we are not independent of God but dependent upon His continuing power to give us life and breath. 

Lord, may I trust Your Word in knowing that You are with me no matter what fear or trial may come my way.

FRIDAY, MARCH 17, 2017


Friday, March 1, 2019

Sign of True Conversion

November 24

Signs of True Conversion

I Corinthians 15:1-4 KJV
. . . Christ died for our sins. . . was buried, . . . He rose again the third day . . . 

The assurance of our salvation is a reoccurring joy on the basis of the continuing work of the Holy Spirit, fellowship with Christ and the Father. This is  a crucial part of our so great salvation. The person that is truly saved will be sensitive to sin in his or her life and cry out as Paul did in Romans 7:24, “O wretched man that I am!” True believers are to, . . . walk in the Light as He is in the Light,” (I John 1:7), confessing and forsaking sin as it is made known to them. If we say we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness of sin, we are lying to ourselves and are not practicing the truth–––Light and darkness do not coexist.

God gives us the confidence to know that we have eternal life not based on feelings or experiences but on the truths of Scripture. If this is true, then there is never a reason for any of us to live a ho-hum Christian life. We are to live our lives experiencing His exceedingly abundant grace and mercy by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and what He has done for us on the cross.

Suffering rejection because of your faith is a painful test but you are not to be surprised by this persecution (I Peter 4:12,13). If you are being persecuted by the world and have experienced rejection, bitterness, hostility, and alienation, then this may bring clarity to whom you belong and whose name you bear. 

It is the Christian’s blessed hope that one day Christ will return and we will see Him face-to-face. Our citizenship is in heaven and one day we will be transformed from this frail, sinful body into a glorious body bearing “the image of the heavenly” (I Corinthians 15:49b). Our longing to see Christ indicates the wonderful reality of eternal salvation.


Lord, thank You for saving grace.