Wednesday, August 27, 2014

You Do Not Go To Heaven By Your Own Way



Jesus said to him, I am the Way and the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father except by (through) Me. John 14:6 (AMP)

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT

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. 1 John 1:9 NLT

I have hidden Your word in my heart, that I might not sin against You. Psalm 119:11 NLT

But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:7 NLT

They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. Revelation 12:11 NIV
 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Strength Is For Service Not Status

Mark 10:35-45 (AMP)

35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, approached Him and said to Him, Teacher, we desire You to do for us whatever we ask of You.

36 And He replied to them, What do you desire Me to do for you?

37 And they said to Him, Grant that we may sit, one at Your right hand and one at [Your] left hand, in Your glory (Your majesty and splendor).

38 But Jesus said to them, You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink or be baptized with the baptism [of affliction] with which I am baptized?

39 And they replied to Him, We are able. And Jesus told them, The cup that I drink you will drink, and you will be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized,

40 But to sit at My right hand or at My left hand is not Mine to give; but [it will be given to those] for whom it is ordained and prepared.

41 And when the other ten [apostles] heard it, they began to be indignant with James and John.

42 But Jesus called them to [Him] and said to them, You know that those who are recognized as governing and are supposed to rule the Gentiles (the nations) lord it over them [ruling with absolute power, holding them in subjection], and their great men exercise authority and dominion over them.

43 But this is not to be so among you; instead, whoever desires to be great among you must be your servant,

44 And whoever wishes to be most important and first in rank among you must be slave of all.

45 For even the Son of Man came not to have service rendered to Him, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for (instead of) many.


It’s amazing to see how God works and His perspective on things. Being great in the Kingdom of God is totally perceived different than this world believes. In Mark 10:43-45(NIV), Jesus said, “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be a slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

In his book, the Purpose Drive Life, Pastor Rick Warren expanded Jesus’ Words more and said, “God determines your greatness by how many people you serve, and not how many people serve you.”

Yes… exactly.

Jesus measured greatness in terms of service and not our status, but the world measures greatness in terms of status, their classes, or ranks.

It’s all about serving people and making a difference and be a good influence in people’s lives folks! The more people you help or serve in your life, the greater you become.

Luke 22:24-27(AMP)

24 Now an eager contention arose among them [as to] which of them was considered and reputed to be the greatest.

25 But Jesus said to them, The kings of the Gentiles are deified by them and exercise lordship [ruling as emperor-gods] over them; and those in authority over them are called benefactors and well-doers.

26 But this is not to be so with you; on the contrary, let him who is the greatest among you become like the youngest, and him who is the chief and leader like one who serves.

27 For who is the greater, the one who reclines at table (the master), or the one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am in your midst as One Who serves.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Someone Is Watching You

Paul and Silas in Prison
Acts 16:16-40 (NIV)


16 Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. 17 She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” 18 She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.

19 When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities. 20 They brought them before the magistrates and said, “These men are Jews, and are throwing our city into an uproar 21 by advocating customs unlawful for us Romans to accept or practice.”

22 The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. 23 After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. 24 When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.

25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. 27 The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. 28 But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

29 The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” 32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. 33 At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. 34 The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household.

35 When it was daylight, the magistrates sent their officers to the jailer with the order: “Release those men.” 36 The jailer told Paul, “The magistrates have ordered that you and Silas be released. Now you can leave. Go in peace.”

37 But Paul said to the officers: “They beat us publicly without a trial, even though we are Roman citizens, and threw us into prison. And now do they want to get rid of us quietly? No! Let them come themselves and escort us out.”

38 The officers reported this to the magistrates, and when they heard that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens, they were alarmed. 39 They came to appease them and escorted them from the prison, requesting them to leave the city. 40 After Paul and Silas came out of the prison, they went to Lydia’s house, where they met with the brothers and sisters and encouraged them. Then they left.


One day at work during lunch break while in the kitchen I ran into one of my co-workers. We were just briefly talking about our lives. You know.., the general talk; how are you doing, how is family? But during our conversation she said something that awestruck me. And this is what she said; “You really inspire me, Helen.” Knowing what we have just talked about was kind of brief, this compliment was kind of out of the conversation. It must have come from somewhere; she really surprised me. What is it made her be inspired by me? I wanted to know more. And so we talked more.

I came to realize that sometimes someone could be inspired just by watching you from afar how you live your life in difficult times. There are people watching how we live our lives, and we will never know whom God has placed in the corner for us to inspire. How we live our lives, how we handle our trials and tribulations could be an inspiration to someone whom God has placed in our lives. It’s our chance to glorify God through our lives and hence become good witnesses of Jesus Christ.

My message today is do not give up on your faith, your life, your dreams, or on things, just because you are facing many challenges or going through a very difficult situation right now. And it may be what is happening to you is unfair. The situation is so difficult, and you feel like cannot even go to someone and ask for help; so you say to yourself only God can help you. You may feel like God has forgotten about you. Perhaps you think you don’t deserve to go through what you are going through right now. You have been going to Church regularly, you have been reading the Bible, you have been serving God over time, even tried to walk extra miles against your normal to do good to others, but instead for things to get better, they get worse.

Sometimes God allows unfair situations to happen to you, and for His whatever reason, I believe His plan is always to get the glory out of those situations.

Perhaps your situation could be somehow similar to Paul and Silas. If you read Acts 16:16-40 above, for Paul and Silas to go to prison was unfair to them. But God allowed that unfairness to happen to them so that they could be witnesses of Jesus Christ to those in prison.

It is easy to believe and have great faith when things go well with you. But what happens when everything in your life goes sour? Perhaps like me, my perseverance in faith in God, during my current trials, tribulations, or persecutions inspired one of my co-workers. And I have to say I give all the credit to the Holy Spirit because I wouldn’t be able to do this without His help to keep me together in my faith.

My friend, my advice to you is that whatever it is, keep the faith and let God be glorified through you. For you to keep the faith is the only way you can be a witness of Jesus Christ to those around you. So keep the faith for you will never know who is watching. And like Paul and Silas, keep praising and thanking God in advance as you seek Him in prayer for your breakthrough, expecting for Him to move on your behalf. He will definitely come through and set your free from your circumstances. God’s timing is always perfect timing even when we think He is somehow late.

1 Peter 1:6-7 says, “In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”

Perhaps your situation may be for you to be strengthened in your faith in Christ Jesus. But whatever the case always know there are people around who always seem to be watching you, and as you witness you bring glory to God.

When push comes to shove all we have to do is to ask The Holy Spirit to give us strength to endure. Ask God for the strength to do His Will, His way. He will strengthen us and keep renewing our strength as we continue to trust in Him (Isaiah 40:31).

Let us keep trusting God completely until we see our breakthrough. Amen!

In Christ,


HM


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 NIV

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7 NIV

I can do all this through Him Who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13 NIV

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. John 16:33 NIV

Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will persecute you also. John 15:20 NIV

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Let Your Lives Be Built On JESUS

 
 

Spiritual Fullness in Christ

6 So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, 7 rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.