Reconciled

We are Now Ambassadors for Christ

ambassadors' flags

Now, then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us; we beg you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

2nd Corinthians 5:20

Did you know that if you are a Christian, you are now an ambassador for Christ? It seems that we may have missed the boat to go over to the other side where Christ is. If Christ is Lord overall, then we are with him. If you are a follower of Christ, you are His ambassador. The Strong’s concordances for the Hebrew word for ambassador is [tsiyr], which means “an official envoy or messenger of a country or state. Today, this may be close to a goodwill ambassador that is appointed by a charity or other organizations to publicize its activities or promote a specified cause. An ambassador for Christ is a messenger of Good News, for the ambassador brings healing and health to the souls of those who will listen.

As the cold of snow in the time of harvest, so is a faithful messenger to those who send him; for he refreshes the soul of his masters.

Proverbs 25:13

We should enjoy hearing the Good News of the Gospel, because it brings the message of Christ and reconciliation to God. I can remember a time of refreshing when the presence of the Lord came into the churches across America. In Acts chapter 3 in verse 19, Peter spoke these words, “Repent, therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.” We may have missed the meaning of what Peter was saying in Acts 3:19 in that everyone should repent so that the time of refreshing comes upon us all. Having sorrow about our sins is not repentance. Even Christians need to repent from their sins and be reminded that if they have lost their standing with God, they need to confess before God instead of carrying the sorrow of sin within their heart. Repentance means to change your mind. A changed mind regarding sin, self, and God can only bring times of refreshing and the presence of the Lord within our mist. Let us not be fooled in this regard of the true meaning of repentance. It is one who follows Christ in word and in deed because he changed his mind not to be of this world.

We are to be a messenger for Christ and not for ourselves. We must remember that our faith will be tested in where our mind and heart truly is. Jesus said, “No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the Kingdom of God,” see Luke 9:62. We are either for Christ or against Christ. We do not look back to what we were living in, for we came out of darkness since the light has shone upon our hearts. We no longer walk in darkness but in the light of His glory. His light shines on the path in which we now walk daily. Our eyes are now open to the truth and our minds are changed to walking on a new path. The Lord may send you out like the seventy he sent forth in chapter 10 of the Gospel of Luke. We should pray for the laborers who are sent forth into the harvest field. We all are sent out into the field knowing about the ministry of reconciliation as is stated in 2nd Corinthians 5:18. Are we not a new creation in Christ? Is not the old man passed away because of Christ?

Let us examine ourselves to see that we are in the faith of the one who we believe in. This is what the apostle Paul said to the Corinthians in 2nd Corinthians 13:5. What about the seventy that went out that Jesus had appointed in Luke chapter 10? They came back with joy and were amazed saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject unto us through thy name.” Yes, with joy they came back as victors in Christ Jesus, and Jesus said, “I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.” And oh! You must read the rest of the story of that wonderful chapter. About the things being revealed unto babes, the power of God. These seventy people that Jesus appointed were not elders of a church, they were babes in Christ doing the will of Christ, and Jesus thanked the Father about it and said, “for it seemed good in thy sight.” Will you go forth and share your testimony of what Christ has done for you?

What if you were appointed like one of the seventy people? Does this frighten you? I can remember asking elders of the church to come with me and my husband to the men’s homeless mission in Seattle, Washington. To my surprise some were afraid to go to a Christian based homeless shelter for men. Granted the scene sometimes in and around the shelter was not always pleasant to witness. There were men living in cardboard boxes by the mission. Some were intoxicated, some had mental conditions, and some were just rough around the edges. This was witnessing human degradation due to circumstances that happened in their life. This is where human dignity was gone because of failure of themself or at someone else’s hand. This is where Human dignity was violated. You may think why God would be concerned about those who violated themselves as well as others. Why? Because God so loved the world that he gave us his only son.  Everyone needs the love of God residing in their heart.

Human dignity is lost when there is slavery, torture, poverty, starvation, armed conflict, domestic violence, racism, genocide, rape and human trafficking. The evil power in these practices do not reflect on the goodness of men, but rather the opposite. We may not want to be reminded of such wicked or cruel acts, but they are written down in many history books for a reason. The reason being that we should not fall to such a low estate ourselves. Can we have a change of mind towards repentance of seeking our own success and power? Yes, we can. Just look at Charles Colson and the Watergate scandal under President Richard Nixon. Charles Colson’s life changed because of Jesus Christ, and he had to tell his story in a book titled, “Born Again.” Colson became founder of the non-profit ministry of the Prison Fellowship. He made a promise while in prison to remember prisoners and their families. What a change of mind and profession Colson had, and many thought he was crazy. Would you be crazy for Christ?

Maybe we should ask that question if we would be crazy for Christ. To walk under God’s power is the best way to walk as ambassadors for Christ if we are reconciled to God. We have our minds changed from doing wicked works to doing good works in the love of Christ. This new life gives us human dignity because His love for us is genuine and not faked. We remember who we once were but now we walk in the light of His glory. We go where he sends us even if it is our own back yard because we are now ambassadors for Christ. Do not be afraid of what you might see, share how you changed your mind for Christ and received freedom from the burden of sin. Live in the light of His love, hope, and peace.

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Justification, Love, Peace, Righteousness

Perfect Peace

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Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed o thee, because he trusted in thee.

Isaiah 26:3

The world is a dusty dirty place and we as Christians must walk in it every day. There are times when conflict and the daily grime we experience weighs heavy upon our heart to bring us down. It is no wonder that Jesus said to shake off the dust of your feet in Matthew 10:4. We go out to work, play, and buy and it is not always pleasant. We witness anger, arguing, and nasty words not worth mentioning, but see no peace. Visiting someone’s house who may or may not be receptive to what you have to say can be nerve wracking.  Some do not want to hear what you have to say because you’re a Christian. We may want to tell the world what God has given us, but we are hit in the face or told to shut up. Has this happened to you? Has someone walked away from you because you are a Christian? Some may even say, “Oh! you think you are so righteous.” It happened to me.  I just looked upon the person with sadness in my heart, for they were speaking judgement rather than the love of God. This is a reflection upon themselves that they are not what they want to be. In fact, no one is righteous before God.

Only those who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as the son of God who died, and arose from the dead, have been given the gift of Christ righteousness. The word righteous is a Hebrew word “ tsadiyq,” meaning to be upright or just. This speaks about an upright or just man. The meaning is of a just man because that person is right with God and follows God’s commandments. As a child of God, we carry the peace of God with us everywhere we go. If you are not received, when you depart, shake off the dust of your feet. Why? Shaking off the dust of our feet is a testimony against them [see Luke 9:5]. This speaks to the day of judgement, and your peace should be return to you. We are to be in perfect peace no matter what happens in the world. God’s peace should reign within our hearts. Jesus told his disciples, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid,” [John 14:27]. As Christian we see with different eyes because of Christ.

Because of Christ we are a new creation. We are reconciled to God through Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ has given us the ministry of reconciliation. This is the ministry of atonement for our sins, for judgement came upon us all, but through Christ we have the gift of justification toward life [see Romans 5:18-19]. We have been made righteous through Jesus Christ. If our mind is anchored in Christ, we will have perfect peace within our heart and soul. Our trust is in what Jesus has accomplish for us on the cross. Paul states that “being justified by faith, we have peace with God through Jesus Christ,” [see Romans 5:1]. In fact, the whole fifth chapter of Romans 5 speaks about our justification. It is about living in the grace of God and having hope. Paul affirms that through tribulation, that we experience, we will learn patience and hope. We are not ashamed because the love of God is in our hearts. Love is the fulfillment of the law [see Roman 13:10]. All things must be done through love, or it means nothing, and what is done is done in vain. That is why the apostle Paul stated in 1 Corinthians chapter 13, verse 13, “now abides faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

Love makes the world go round. . .love is what we humans need. Love is what God gave us through his son Jesus. That love gave us perfect peace. As Christians we are restored because we trust in the Lord.  That is what Isaiah was talking about in chapter 26. It is a testimony of the restored and the path of the just.  Jesus Christ is our strength when we are weak. He is our peace, if our mind is firmly anchored in him. We are not to be anxious about anything, but to pray and ask God for help. “Let your request be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus,” [Philippians 4:7]. This is a promise that God gave us that we ourselves would have perfect peace, if our mind and heart is anchored in Christ Jesus. If we do not have peace, we must ask the Lord why? Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you what has cause the peace to leave. Remember a right relationship with God is an open relationship where nothing is hidden.

I remember singing this worship song titled, “Peace Give I To Thee,” at youth meetings in 1974. I also had the album. Let this song resonate within your heart and share it with others as a reminder of who gives us peace, faith, hope, and love. May God’s perfect peace be with you at all times.

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Righteousness

Have you submitted to God’s Righteousness?

For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Romans 10:3

Are we ignorant of God’s righteousness? Have you ever considered your own righteousness being above that of Christ? Do we take it for granted and think that we have attained righteousness because we are decent, honest, and just? That we are righteous because of the good works we do. Some claim they are righteous by the church they have become members of. Righteousness is not a common human trait. Righteousness is what we learn through experience in how we treat each another. We are not born with righteousness. Righteousness is doing what is right and just in all our relationships. Righteousness maintains the peace in every situation. However, a self-righteous attitude does not maintain the peace, it thrives on its own virtue. One might say a self-righteous person has a superiority complex and that has negative results of conflict and irritation, which only creates distance within a relationship.

In Romans chapter ten, the Apostle Paul is talking about the failure of Israel’s claim that they are righteous by the deeds they have done. Their claim is not different than what any church or individual may claim in that they are superior in what they do. They may have a great zeal towards God. A zeal towards God by their actions by doing good works, yet they persecute others for not coming up to their standards has brought disappointment in God’s eye. The apostle Paul said they are ignorant and do not know about God’s righteousness. They have established their own righteousness. An example of this is when a place of worship becomes a place of merchandise thinking that you are doing good deeds by selling items for the glory of God. This brings disapproval in God’s eye [see John 2:16-17]. This is not the true form of righteousness.

To think that we can obtain our own righteousness by the deeds we do is an impossible task since sin reigns within our mind not to do good.  We only do good if it is for our own benefit. We think we are better than the next person, but we are not.  Superiority means nothing in God’s eye. To think that you are better than someone else is a falsified claim. Why? Because we should be all one in unity with God through Christ. There is one body, and one Spirit, and one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all [see Ephesians 4:4-6]. Paul tells us to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace [Ephesians 4:3]. This was the theme for every Christian Church.  I remember a song we sang in church titled, “We are one in the Spirit,” written by Peter Scholtes in the 60’s.  This song reveals the nature of the truth that Paul was talking about in Ephesians chapter 4, but it is also in John 13:34 that we should love one another.

We are one in the Spirit
We are one in the Lord

And we pray that all unity
May one day be restored
And they’ll know we are Christians
By our love, By our love
Yes, they’ll know we are Christians
By our love

Do they know today that we are Christians?  By our love?  We should all pray that all unity may one day be restored. How is it restored? It is restored through the process of reconciliation through the cross of Christ.  We need to be restored back to wholeness as a child of God.  Restoration is done through the Holy Spirit. Through the love of Christ death on the cross is the only way we as human beings can be restored.  Paul stated in Ephesians 4:13, “Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” Wow! In the unity of faith in the knowledge of the Son of God.  In the knowledge of the Son of God and not in the knowledge of anything else. Why? Because “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth,” [see Romans 10:4]. Christ is the living bread of life. Christ said, “I am the living bread which came down from heaven,” [John 6:51]. Christ also said, “the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life,” [John 6:63]. The words are spirit and life, yet we enter in through the flesh, which does not profit because it is not spirit or life. The flesh speaks to its own self-worth instead of Christ. Our self-worth only comes from the Son of God who is worthy of all praise. Note that the Apostle Paul ascribes righteousness to faith [see Romans 10:6]. Righteousness is of faith, and this is what Paul is preaching about.

The righteousness of God was approved in Christ Jesus. Only Jesus met every requirement of the law. No flesh will glory in God’s presence. Christ Jesus is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption, [see 1 Corinthians 1:29-31]. This is the full meal package that is based upon the word of faith. This is the word that is near us and in our mouth to speak states Paul. Faith comes by hearing the word of God. Can we believe that Christ is our righteousness and that He fulfilled the law and the commandments? Can we believe that God has raised him from the dead? Look to God, Believe in His Son, and Confess with the mouth that God raised Christ from the dead. This is a heartfelt confession, for the Spirit reveals it to everyone who listens. We can either accept it or reject it. God knows those who have a true confession. Do not think for one moment that you are above anyone when it comes to righteousness. Do not fool yourself into your own self-righteousness. Our virtue comes from Christ alone. Adam brought death because of sin, but Christ gave us the gift of righteousness and life eternal. Let us submit to God’s righteousness through Jesus Christ who paid the price on the cross and arose from the dead to give us the gift of righteousness. We receive it with open arms, and we are thankful for God’s provision. We walk in faith accepting God’s gracious gift and ask for the Holy Spirit to help us to live the life of Christ by working out the conflict we have within our heart knowing that Christ is our righteousness. Through faith we submit ourselves to the righteousness of God.

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Faith, Health

Who is the Health of your Countenance?

Why art thou cast down, O My soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? HOPE IN GOD; for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

Psalms 43:5

Are you cast down and distressed? Do you have someone to lift you up from your oppression? Does your current situation have you tied up in knots? We are living in uneasy times since Covid arrived around the world. The way we function has changed due to Covid and robberies are now a common thing within our boundaries. It is unnerving to see vandalism, stealing, and destruction of property. We are witnessing this and hearing about it on a weekly basis. Carjackings is on the rise across the Nation. It’s not just the car they are after, but any items one could sell to make quick cash. Cars were broken into in our own neighborhood including ours. The one thing they took was the multifunctional Cup organizer in the middle of the car. Why? Because it held coins. A couple of weeks ago there was a string of vandalisms on one corner strip where they broke in and took the cash registers of businesses down the row. We are living in uncertain times, and this has brought out the negative side of humanity.

If you find people to be more withdrawn it is because of fear.  Fear causes us to think irrationally. Long term exposer to fear can cause one to be anxious most of the time. We are anxious about what will happen next. If you are in this state, turn off the nightly news cast on your devices. If you feel on edge, refocus your mind on God’s word of peace. Remember that there is another spirit at work in the world that does not belong to God. Hear the words of Jesus;

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

John 16:33

Oppression, affliction, and distress are a part of this world’s tribulations. Humanity outward appearance reveals its nature of inward struggles of the heart. Therefore, we should question who the health of our countenance is. We question it because it will reveal where our hope is. King David was a man who lived in distress. He was hemmed in from all sides including from those to whom he thought he could trust. In Psalms 42 and 43, three times David asked himself why his soul was cast down, that He should hope in God, and praise Him, “who is the health of his countenance, and his God.” Our God being the health of our countenance. Can you imagine that? Look at the beginning of Psalms 43. David asked God to judge him and plead his case against an ungodly nation. He then asked God to deliver him from deceitful and unjust men. This should be our prayer as well. Do you think that David knew who his enemy was? Yes, my friend, David knew full well who the enemy was. He questions himself why he was mourning because of the oppression of the enemy [see verse 2 of Psalms 43].

We can learn to wait upon the Lord God who is our hope and our confidence. Just look at Psalms 62 and read it and know where your confidence comes from. We are not to trust in oppression. . .

Trust not in oppression and become not vain in robbery; if riches increase, set not your heart upon them. God hath spoken once, twice have I heard this, that power belongeth unto God.

Psalms 62:10-11

David is having a conversation with God, and he heard God tell him twice that “power belongs to God.” Wow! Power belongs to God and not man. Think twice about those who are ruling countries today and pray for them. God will judge every man’s work. Not only that, but in Psalms 62, David also exclaims that God is his strength, defense, and refuge. We are to always trust in God and pour our heart out to him. Have you poured out your heart to God? This is refocusing your mind towards God and crying out to him how you feel. Let us be honest about our own fears and anxiety and talk to God about them. Let us sing praises unto Him to whom all power belongs. Let God be always the health of your countenance because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world [see 1 John 4:4]. If you are God’s children, He will hear you loud and clear. There is no doubt when you place your trust in God. David had full trust in God. David did not trust in his bow or his sword to save him. He trusted in God to keep him alive. Can we trust God to keep us alive during these times of uncertainty?

I pray that your answer is yes, amen. Like David we are not to trust in any form of oppression but to take it to God in prayer. Ask God to bring the truth and light upon whatever circumstances you may find yourself in. Remember what Peter said in chapter 5: 7-9. To cast all our cares upon him. To be sober and vigilant because your adversary, the devil, like a roaring lion walketh about seeking whom he may devour. Resist steadfast in the faith. Resist fear, anxiety, and oppression in the name of Jesus. Allow his peace to rule your heart and have a clear mind. You are under His care for He cares for you. Always hope in God for He is the health of our countenance, and our God.

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The New Man

Are you a new Creation?

If any man be in Christ, he is a new Creation; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

2 Corinthians 5:17

“Behold, all things are become new.” We love to hear about new things, new technologies, new fashion, etc. We are fascinated about newness of an arena, stadium, and theaters, for entertainment. We as human beings desire to be amused and entertained in some way. It is what we call relaxation and relaxation can be in many forms. Something new will always be the height of our fasciation. Just look at all the new kitchen small appliances on the market and the biggest item is the Nespresso machines. Our coffee is no longer percolated. There are now so many ways to make coffee at home, one does not need to go to Starbucks to get expressos or lattes. Just think about it. I grew up with the percolator and now I have a small Nespresso machine that I got for Christmas. Talk about something new. . . we love to talk about it.

What about the old percolator? It still is around, and some believe it still makes the best coffee. We end up using it when the power goes out. Now you are probably wondering what all this talk about coffee is. Well, I thought it might be a good illustration for a new creation. A new coffee machine means that you let go of the old one. The old machine is put away in some cabinet and many never see the light of day again. All the glory is in the new coffee machine. Its appearance gives way to its being new and novel. In verse 12 of 2 Corinthians, Paul mentions this glory in appearance, and not in the heart. In last week post I mentioned the importance of having a clear conscience towards God and men. We need to be honest with ourselves in who we are as humans. God is not necessary concerned with your outward appearance, but with your heart. What is the point in getting saved and going back to the same old ways or as some would say to the slime that made you sick in body and soul? We need to be made new. We need to become a new creation in Christ. Our life is not to go back into the mire. We are to pray and go forward.

Something new has taken place within our heart when we have received the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ. That Christ died for all and if he died for all than all were dead [see verse 14 of 2 Corinthians]. We have missed it thinking that we can live with one foot in the world and another foot in Christ. You cannot serve two masters.

“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”

Matthew 6:24

The love and hate often happens between children wanting to serve either the mother or the father. Whoever gives out more treats. And this goes without saying when it comes to who is doing the abuse against the child. Christ died for all that all may have a new life. A new life that is not bound by the ways of this world or by fleshy desires. Do you want a new beginning? There are those who are thankful for the chance of having a new beginning in life. This is the power of God to change our heart and mind to become a new person in Christ. We ask God to do this because we cannot help ourselves. We may try but fail. Christ has already done it for us through the cross. Through His shed blood we are cleansed from all unrighteousness. When Christ arose from death, he took back what Satan took from man and that is death.

We were alienated from God through the sin of Adam. The law of the commandments and ordinances was the foreshadow of things to come. No matter how hard it was to keep in the past, today it is impossible to follow and keep. The law shows how weak man is. The law also points to Christ for the final sacrifice. Christ has abolished this enmity in order to make in himself one new man in that we would have peace with God. This new man is a new creation in Christ. The apostle Paul tells us that we are the temple of the living God and not of the dead. We are to “come out from among them, and be ye separate saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, [see 2 Corinthians 6:17]. I will receive you is based upon you coming out and separating yourself unto God. There is no compromise when it comes to being a Christian. Paul tells us to cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit [see 2 Corinthians 7:1]. The works of the flesh is our selfish ambitions to consume something. This is where jealousy, anger, and envying stick out to the point of causing someone harm or to suffer. This is contrary to the will of God.

Paul further tells us Christ died for all and those who have received him should not love unto themselves, but unto Christ who died for them, and rose again [see 2 Corinthians 5:15]. A new man is a new creation in Christ and has been reconciled to God. This is done through repentance. Godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation, but the sorrow of the world worketh death [2 Corinthians 7:10]. I pray that you have experienced this godly sorrow that moved you towards repentance to salvation. I pray that you are totally reconciled to God and separated unto God. I pray that you are a new creation in Christ and that His Spirit is residing in your heart to guide you in the path of righteousness as you are being changed from glory to glory. To have this experience of being changed into the image of Christ is done through the Holy Spirit.

Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.

Psalms 51:11-12

If David can ask God to clean his heart and renew his spirit, so can we. Do not allow any other thing to control you accept God. Let go of any other commitment that is contrary to the will of God. Serve God fully and ask Him to restore your joy of salvation. Let not your heart become heavy from the burden of sin. Repent, place it at the feet of Jesus and allow God to change you into a new creation in Christ Jesus. Hold your ground in Christ as ambassadors for Christ and rebuke the devil in the name of Jesus. He will flee when you stand against him [see James 4:7]. In all things “humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up,” [James 4:10]. Read the word to know His will. Be a new creation in Christ and let go of the old ways. Each day is a new day in Christ. Each day can bring new possibilities. Look forward to the promises of God in your life as ambassadors for Christ.

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Godliness

Exercise Thyself Towards Godliness

“Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.”

1 Timothy 6:5

There are many who display an outward appearance of godliness, but within their heart is anything but godliness. They complain and want more for themselves rather than being content with what they have such as food and clothing. Displaying godliness and getting more is not gaining one anything, since we brought nothing into this world and can take nothing with us. So, what is the point of gaining it all but to flaunt it and show it in a boastful manner. This is not exercising thyself towards godliness at all. The apostle Paul talked about how one’s devotion towards God can be devotion towards something else, such as selfish ambition. True devotion towards God is having a clear conscience towards God and towards men [see Acts 24:16]. The question arises as to what form of godliness should we have?

What root of evil should be pulled up from the ground? We have all heard how money is the root of evil. The apostle Paul warns how the love of money brings destruction and eternal punishment. Yet, for many, the self needs to be gratified despite the dissolution of morality. This is known as the human condition towards sin due to lustful desires. Every human knows that within themself lies a strong desire towards self-gratification. This is where unpleasant and disruptive behaviors or emotional outbursts come, and some are violent. We may control it for a time, but behind closed doors disruptive behaviors are bursting out. This is not godliness by any means, and Paul is telling us to flee from those who have this root of evil. It is not just the money but what they teach that brings ungodliness rather than godliness. As we near closer to the end of this world we will begin to see the growth of self-gratification as it was in the days of Noah.

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

2 Timothy 3:1-5

We read it but are we hearing what the word is saying? Paul is warning those who are professing Christians in the world. There will be perilous times and destruction will come because men will be lovers of themselves. Men will have a form of godliness but will deny the power of God through the Holy Spirit because the Spirit will convict men of sin [see John 16:8]. We cannot deny the power of God through Jesus Christ who is raised from the dead and is now sitting with God in the heavenly places [Ephesians 1:20]. God has put all things under the feet of Jesus. Jesus sends the Holy Spirit to guide those who believe in the truth. This is the power of God to change every human heart. Men is unable to change their own heart even though they may be able to exercise it for a time. That is why a man must be “born again not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever [1 Peter 1:23].” It is the incorruptible seed that has eternal life and that is the word of God. Jesus exclaimed, “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life [John 6:63].” The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. How can we understand it unless we are born of the Spirit?

“Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”

John 3:8

Like the wind upon the earth, we may hear it but may not know where it is coming from. Today, we rely on the weathervane to show us the direction of the wind. When I was in Australia as a teen, one Sunday morning I went to church with a friend. I heard a different sermon from that which was spoken by the minister. The sermon I heard was about being saved and my heart needed cleansing from sin. After the service I went to the minister to have a word with him. He directed me to his office and asked what it was I wanted to say. I told him I wanted to be saved, for I heard him talking about it. The minister looked troubled and said, “I did not preach about being saved.” I was adamant about what I heard. He said that he could not help me but was sure that I had heard something from God. I left the church not knowing how to be saved. I did not know who Jesus was. I did not know that “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life [John 3:16].” The Spirit of God was moving upon my heart in preparation for me to receive the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  I needed the water and the Spirit to guide me to the truth.

What do you do with the issue of sin? What do you do with a form of godliness but denying the power of God? Mere men cannot know God unless He is born of water and Spirit. Born of water is the word of God and hearing plus believing it. Born of the Spirit is after believing it you receive it and become saved. Your conscious is no longer seared because you have accepted God’s sacrifice for your sin. It is through Jesus’ death on the cross that we can be saved from sin. The way toward Godliness is through the word and the Spirit of God that moves upon our hearts to believe and receive.

“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”

Hebrews 4:12

The word of God is the two-edged sword that pierces the soul and sprit of men’s hearts. This is the incorruptible seed. Are we willing to receive it? We are to exercise our will in response to the will of God that is in the word. Exercising is your will to become doers of the word of God and that is done by believing and receiving. Our faith is in who Jesus is. Our walk as professing Christians is in the power of God through the Spirit that our stony heart will be changed with the heart of God. We should always have a clear conscience as Zacchaeus did in Acts 24:16.

“And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.”

Acts 24:16

It is also important to make restitution and correcting past violations you have made.  If you have borrowed something from a friend or neighbor and haven’t returned it, then you need to take that item back and make it right. This is exercising thyself towards Godliness. If you’ve made promises to your family, or others that you have not fulfilled, then you need to ask their forgiveness and see to it that the promise is fulfilled. That is exercising thyself towards Godliness. If you have harmed someone’s reputation through gossip or slander, then you need to humble yourself and ask their forgiveness. That is exercising thyself towards Godliness. Always having a clear conscience before God and man will keep your heart pure before God. You will be able to turn away from all perverse voices of corrupt men.   They are those who do the opposite of the will of God and gratify their own self.  Always keep the water [the word of God] and the Holy Spirit by your side.  This will make your devotion towards God real and active as you gain new heights in your walk with the Lord.

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The Seed

The Parable of the Sower

Blessed are your eyes, for they see; and your ears, for they hear.

Matthew 13:16

Have you ever considered who the Sower of the seed is in Matthew chapter 13? In the Gospel of Matthew chapter 13, Jesus spoke this parable about the Sower that went forth to sow seeds. This parable although simplistic in nature, is one of the most important messages, yet misunderstood as to its meaning. Have you ever sowed seeds and took part in the labor of maturing a plant to its full growth? It can be labor intensive compared to the amount of work it takes in relation to its output. So many things can go wrong when planting a seed in the ground. There are weeds to pull, there is root rot to consider when it gets too much water, and you must consider the weather patterns and unforeseen or unusual weather patterns that causes destruction of crops. Yet, Jesus speaks and says, “who hath ears to hear, let him hear,” [Matthew 13:9]. Of course, you must consider the soil where the seed is planted. It must be good soil in order to bare a great crop of fruits. There is a preparation time for the soil before a person can sow the seed. There is a time for everything, and we must hear and know the season of time.

Just read the beginning of the song by the Byrd’s. . .Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything There Is a Season)

To everything turn, turn, turn
There is a season turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven

A time to be born, a time to die
A time to plant, a time to reap
A time to kill, a time to heal
A time to laugh, a time to weep

To everything turn, turn, turn
There is a season turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven

This song is taken from Ecclesiastes 3:1-8. In verse 9, it states, “what profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he labored?” Right now, there are many people questioning their own profit. The truth is that it is a gift of God [see verse 13 of Ecclesiastes 3]. A gift of God that one can work and have a profit. Take time to read the whole chapter three of Ecclesiastes.

Let us think about the word Christendom. The meaning of Christendom is the worldwide body or society of Christians. The body of Christ, the children of the kingdom that belongs to Christ. We forget that it is Jesus the Son of man who holds the key to the Kingdom of Heaven. It is the Son of Man that sows the good seed. This seed that He sows is the word of God, for He said that my word is spirit and life [see John 6:63]. The church is not meant to be a political entity. The church does not belong to man but to God. Jesus as the Son of man is master and Lord over all things. This word produces the children of the kingdom who are scattered in the field of the world. These are those who have ears to hear and eyes to see the truth through the Spirit. They are born of the incorruptible word of God. they are the living stones being built up a spiritual house that is acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

The children of the kingdom are those who will endure troubles, misfortunes, and hardship for they know where their help comes from. They have received the good seed in the ground and understand it. This is a time to check the seed we are hearing, for God is moving in a new way. This is a time to check and see if we are hearing and seeing with our eyes the truth of God’s word. Every individual is important to God and especially those who belong to His kingdom. The reality is that it does not matter who plants or waters the field because it is God who gives the increase [see 1 Corinthians 3:6-9]. We are all laborer’s together with God. We are God’s building. There is no new template, method, strategy, actions, or policies to follow but Jesus and His word. Our profit comes from God who gives us the blessing of fruit for our survival. He knows that you need all these things (food, clothing, and shelter).

Every purpose is under Heaven, and we must move with God towards that purpose. This is a time of building you up into a spiritual house towards a holy priesthood in offering up spiritual sacrifices that is acceptable to God through Jesus Christ [see 1 Peter 2:5]. This is a time of consecration. Consecration is the solemn dedication to a special purpose or service. This is not for just the few who are educated, this is for all those who are children of the kingdom of God. Each child of God has a special purpose or service to perform in the kingdom of God. Ask the Lord what that service is. Ask the Lord how you can serve him best. Place your talents and gifts in His hand and ask Him to use you. Most of all ask the Lord to get understanding.

Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore, I hate every false way

Psalms 119:104

Get into the word and pray for God to speak to you through the word. I am amazed how he reveals to me the message for the weekly post. How one scripture leads to another as I remember certain words in the scripture. He can do the same for you through the Spirit. I sometimes cannot remember where a specific scripture is but thank God for the internet. I use the official King James version online to search for words at https://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/. Check out this non-profit site that has been online since November 2007. The truth is that the method is Jesus for He is the way. Watchman Nee exclaimed this is his book titled “Christ the Sum of all Things Spiritual.” Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me ” [see John 14:6]. We all start with Jesus by believing, now we must walk in that believe in Jesus. Jesus is way. Do you know him? Spend time in reading his words and pray for understanding. You will be blessed with eyes to see, and ears to hear.

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The Living Water

I will do a New Thing

Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.

Isaiah 43:19

The New Year has arrived and what are we thinking about. How are we going to make it in this New Year? I guess we cannot exclude Covid-19 anymore since a new variant has entered upon the world. Along with Covid-19 came conspiracy theories that promote an agenda for their own benefit in selling products that are a cure, but no cure has been proven. Whatever you are hearing today may be an alternate reality game due to what people are believing or hearing on social media sites. The biggest culprit is the mouth.

“Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.”

Matthew 15:11

Let us remember the words of Jesus that it is our mouth that pollutes, degrades, and impairs us as human beings. Our God is concerned about our heart and what we put into our minds. This is what can pollute our actions towards death instead of health. Conspiracy theories bring confusion, fear, anxiety, and stress. Be careful how you respond. Step back and reconsider. Guard your tongue and pray for revelation of the truth in everything that comes your way. Remember as a Christian we are not to walk by sight, but by faith [see 2 Corinthians 5:7]. God is in the business of doing a new thing. He wants to birth in us a new heart and spirit. He will make a way through the wilderness and desert that many Christians are experiencing. Our God is making new wine to flow out of our belly. Job exclaimed, “Behold, my belly is as wine which hath no vent; it is ready to burst like new bottles [see Job 32:19].”

What did Job experience when he said his belly is as wine and was ready to burst like new bottles? He was speaking about the Spirit of God. Jesus spoke about it in John 7:38, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.  He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. We need the living waters to flow within our human bodies. This will be the awakening that many have been praying for regarding the movement of the Holy Spirit. But we need to remember that it begins within everyone’s heart. This begins by setting aside all doubts and believing in who Jesus is and being thirsty for more of His Prescence. “Are you thirsty, asked Jesus? Then come unto me and drink.” Drink of the new wine of the Holy Spirit. This is what Ezekiel was talking about in chapter 36. I urge you all to read it. In verse 17, Ezekiel said, “Son of man, when the house of Israel dwelt in their own land, they defiled it by their own way and by their doings. “

Going your own way and doing what you want will bring destruction because you are not following God. There are many people who are scattered because they have no true guide to guide them back into the light of the revelations of God. God is wanting to cleanse us and put a new heart and spirit within us, so that we will not devour one another anymore.

A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

Ezekiel 36:26

God is not interested in a get rich theme church, he is interested in a body that belongs to him through Jesus Christ. Will we deny self and pick up the cross of Christ and walk in the Spirit? Will we carry the new wine within our bellies? This is the time to think about the true direction of God and his provisions. We need to trust and obey God for the time of harvest. Pray for the harvest of souls. Pray for your own soul to be renewed and restored. His supply is inexhaustible when we hear and obey His word. We each need to be a new man and women renewed in the knowledge after His image and not the image of any other man who does not walk in the love of Christ [see Colossians 3:10]. It is time to get out of the cycle of doing the same thing repeatedly. You cannot go back to the way things were, for God is creating a new thing and way to go.

The fear response is to protect yourself, but God wants you to trust him. He wants to build your faith in Him. He will make all things new for He is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is thirsty a fountain of the water of life freely [Revelation 21:6]. Are you ready to let go and trust Him for everything you need? Are you thirsty for the fountain of living water to flow in your life? Pray and get ready for the fountain to flow within you. Ask and receive it in Jesus’ name.

Know that every day, you are standing on Holy ground.

When I walked through the door
I sensed His presence
And I knew this was a place
Where love abounds
For this is a temple
Jehovah God abides here
And we are standing in His presence
On holy ground


Chorus 1
We are standing on holy ground
And I know that there
Are angels all around
Let us praise Jesus now
We are standing in His presence
On holy ground

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Thanksgiving

Enter into His Gates with Thanksgiving

Can we be thankful to God and bless his name when our life has been turned upside down by unforeseen circumstances? Yes, we can because we know that all things will work together for good to those that love God states Romans 8:28. The apostle Paul learned that whatever state he was in, to be content [see Philippians 4:11]. Paul said this after a long discourse of whatsoever things . . .

 Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Philippians 4:8

We are to think on these things. The things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, and things that are of a good report. Do you have a good report to share with someone? Is the Spirit drawing you to enter His gates with Thanksgiving? November 25th is Thanksgiving Day, and many are getting ready for “Turkey Day,” and it comes at a high price this year anywhere from 30 to 50 dollars for a 10-pound Turkey depending on if it is organic or not. I heard my son say that he wondered if He was going to get a free bird this year. Some companies do give their employees free birds, but maybe not this year. Some people are just giving up on the cost of Turkey since there has been a supply chain issue. It is interesting to note along with the Turkey issue is also the gas price and the Christmas Tree supply chain issue here in America. The mad dash to the grocery store has become anything but enjoyable these days with road rage just getting to the store. I’m not kidding about this, for it is happening in nearby cities where we shop. That is one reason why our family changed to Chicken and even Pot Roast for Thanksgiving dinner in the last couple of years instead of Turkey. We are still thankful even if we do not have Turkey for Thanksgiving.

We may forget that the Indians and the early Plymouth colonies were thankful to God for a wonderful harvest. In 1863 it was declared a national holiday by President Lincoln. Harvest time was always a time to be thankful for what food the fields brought in. Some of us grow our own vegetables in our gardens and we are thankful for what we harvested this year. With thanksgiving in our hearts, we give thanks for what we have at our table. The word Thanksgiving in Hebrew is “Chag ha•ho•da•ya,” which takes on the meaning of Holiday and glory, splendor, or majesty to God. Interesting note on the Hebrew word ” Hó•du,” which means the turkey bird. I wonder if that is how the turkey entered the picture for Thanksgiving. We can find this all amusing as we sit at the table and feast this Thanksgiving and know that the Lord is good, and His mercy is everlasting no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in. Our family knows what it is like not to have money to buy a Turkey, and it was the kindness of other Christians who came at the door leaving us several bags of goodies on Thanksgiving Day.

God always supplied our need and we have never gone without food, and that is something to be thankful for, besides all the other blessings that we have received throughout the year. We may see that things are a little crazy out in our world today, but we can be thankful for what we do have at our table this year. We have each other to thank also for making this year more bearable since Covid-19 came upon us. As we praise God and serve Him, we can serve each other this Thanksgiving with joy in our heart, for “this is the day that the Lord has made, and we will rejoice and be glad in it,” Psalms 118:24. Oh! Let us rejoice and be glad in it. Lift your head and rejoice this Thanksgiving for what God has done for you personally. He has given you this day to rejoice and every day to rejoice and be thankful, for you are alive in the Lord and He has not forgotten you. You have a purpose in this life and God will reveal what that purpose is.  He will direct our paths as we acknowledge him [see Proverbs 3:6]. We have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things [see Ephesians 1:11].

I pray that you are being lifted as you read this devotional, for my heart is being lifted as I write this. Oh Lord! Thank you for this day and bless those who need their hearts lifted on this day. Thank you for giving us this day to enjoy each other in our family as we sit at the table of thanksgiving. Let us rejoice and be glad for all that you have given us. Let us share that joy with others so they can be thankful too. . .let us enter His gates everyday with thanksgiving . . . in Jesus Name, Amen.

This is my last post for this year; however, I will be back after the New Year. This is a time to reflect, pray, and be with those you love.  Use your time wisely and engage with those around you with love and kindness.  Be a blessing and you will be blessed.  I will continue to pray for you and please do pray for me.  May we all stay healthy and blessed in Jesus Name.  Take time to read the bible and any post you may have missed.  God bless you all in the name of Jesus.

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Fellowship

The Mystery of the Fellowship

To make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages hath been hidden in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 3:9

What exactly is “the fellowship of the mystery” in Ephesians 3:9?  The Bible states in verse 9 of chapter 3 in Ephesians that It was hidden in God in the beginning of the world, but now it has been made available through the body of Christ. This wonderful fellowship that every believer has is made possible through Christ Jesus. One need not to ever feel alone, since we have the promise of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the key to the mystery of the fellowship, yet it is often overlooked in the body of Christ. After I got saved, a wonderful thing happened. I felt God’s Spirit residing within my heart, and I no longer had the great burden I was carrying as a young adult. I was looking for love in all the wrong places. Through Christ, I found a real love that I desperately needed. I found that Christ was the real meaning for Christmas. I believed in God but did not know about His Son. I found that Christ was more than just a prophet as some have taught. I found that He is the foundation for the mystery of the fellowship.

All the Prophets and Apostles are founded in the mystery of the fellowship through Jesus Christ, yet we can be so distant from the true fellowship by denying the promise of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Let us consider the meaning of the word fellowship. Fellowship in English means companion, a unified body of people with a common interest, and goals. It also takes on the meaning of partnership and membership within a body. The Greek/Hebrew word is “koinōnia,” which means fellowship, association, communion, or joint participation according to the Thayer’s Greek Lexicon. The two words often used in the New Testament is fellowship and communion. As a new Christian, I was excited to go to the youth group Koinonia up on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle Washington. To be a part of a fellowship of believers in Christ was special to me because of the joint participation of worshipping and learning more about our blessed Lord Jesus Christ.

We should never get tired of knowing more about him. His love should always draw us into that fellowship of His Spirit. This mystery is the new relationship we have through Christ and with each other as members of the body of Christ. In the Gospel of John, Chapter 14, it conveys something that is special regarding the Holy Spirit. The fact that there is an intimacy between man and God. Jesus exclaims in verse 20 of Chapter 14 in the Gospel of John, “at that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.” We seem to overlook this oneness between the Father, the Son and us, but it carries a wonderful relationship that is very personal. It is love that carries us through from Jesus to the Father. To think about how the Father and Jesus will abide with us is amazing [see John 14:23]. This should not be overlooked. The Comforter, who is the Holy Spirit shall teach us all things [see John 14:26]. Nothing should separate us from having fellowship with the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. Jesus said that he would pray to the Father for the Comforter to come and abide with us forever [see John 14:16]. Our fellowship is always linked to the Father through Jesus Christ.

That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.

1 John 1:3

The Apostle John expressed this and stated that this was written that our joy may be full [see 1 John 1:4]. Let us have the joy of fellowship in holiness with the Lord. As Christians our fellowship is based upon what Jesus did on the cross. The Apostle John states that “if we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth,” [see 1 John 1:6]. However, “if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another” because the blood of Jesus has cleansed us from all sin [see 1 John 1:7]. The basis of our fellowship is on repentance of our sins. It is the Holy Spirit that draws us towards Christ. Jesus said that the Spirit shall testify of me [John 15:26]. The Holy Spirit will always point to Christ, for we cannot come to the Father without the blood of Christ, for Christ is our sacrifice, and we were bought with a price.  This is the Spirit of Truth who will guide you into all truth, for he will never speak of himself [see John16:13-14]. If you have any other teaching then that of Jesus Christ, or a spirit that does not point to Christ, it is of another entity and that spirit is in darkness.

You cannot have fellowship with the Father and his Son Jesus Christ without the shed blood of Christ for the remission of our sins. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to have a clear conscience in order to keep that fellowship with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Apostle Paul states it clearly that we are one body with many members. “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body,” [1Corinthians 12:12-13]. We follow Christ Jesus, because He is our foundation. It is Christ that we place our faith in. The Holy Spirit is given for our edification. It is the revelation of truth for our present time and of our future. Christ gave us the Comforter so that we would never be alone in this world, for He has chosen us out of this world. We have this Spirit residing with us and guiding us into all truth. All we must do is ask in prayer for the Holy Spirit to guide us every day in our walk and to teach us through the Holy Bible the truth of the meaning of all mysteries that we may come across in the Bible.

Remember to walk in the light is to have fellowship with the Father and the Son through the Holy Spirit. Ask, and you shall receive. . .take time to fellowship with the Lord through worship, prayers, and the reading of His word every day.

The song titled, “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms,” expresses it well:

What a fellowship, what a joy divine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
What a blessedness, what a peace is mine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Refrain

Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms.

The everlasting arms of Jesus and the blessed fellowship He gives us through the Holy Spirit should carry us through every day. If it does not carry you through than ask the father through prayer what is holding back the fellowship. Ask for His Spirit to reveal the truth to you. Have an open heart to listen and hear His word.

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Security

What Foundation do you Live Upon?

Is your foundation upon a rock or is it upon some other material? The word “foundation” is in the Bible 48 times, so it bears consideration into the meaning of what lies behind the word.

Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will show you to whom he is like;

He is like a man who built an house, and dug deep, and laid the foundation on a rock and when a flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it; for it was founded upon a rock.

Luke 6: 47-48

In this scripture Jesus spoke these words right after the sermon of the “Beatitudes.” Let us take note that this was said after he said, “for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh,” [Luke 6:45]. We must always consider our heart, for out of our heart flows the issue of life. Taking that into consideration will help us to define where our foundation is laid upon. A good firm foundation on a house is of the utmost importance and everyone knows that in the city a skyscraper must have a good foundation. Have you ever seen the beginning of building a skyscraper? Tall structures need to have a low center of gravity to support the structure, so it must be dug deep until bedrock is found. This can be 85 meters deep. Bedrock is the key to a strong foundation.

When you think about the depth you must dig down to build a skyscraper.  You can understand the importance of what Jesus was saying in this scripture about the foundation.  If the foundation is laid upon a rock or bedrock, it will be able to withstand a flood. I have seen houses flow down a river of water after a big storm hit. It is like the great St. Patrick Day Flood in Pittsburgh in March of 1936. When the rain melted the snow, it carried down the Allegheny River and the Monongahela River a large amount of water and reached past the flood state of 46 feet.  It flooded the city, yet some buildings were left standing.  Read more about it at Pittsburgh’s Golden Triangle. You might say why bring this story up? Because it drives the point home of having a firm foundation to withstand the storm. How about the classic bedtime story of the “Three Little Pigs?” Have you ever thought about its meaning? Jesus is concerned about the foundation you are living on. Is your foundation built upon the rock or is it build upon something else?

The word foundation means the act of laying, establishing, or setting a building with support. Jesus is saying that whoever listens to His words and does them is a wise person who build’s his house upon a rock. In other words, it is Jesus himself who is the rock, the firm foundation and the support is His words. The apostle Paul exclaims this in 1 Corinthians 3:11.

For other foundation, can no man lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ is our foundation, and we should take note of His words spoken in red in the Bible. When building a foundation, you must dig deep. This means you must dig deep into the meaning of the words of Christ in the Bible and ask Him to reveal its meaning. It is the Bible that is our moral compass for living every day and Jesus exclaims if we do them, we will be building a house upon a rock. We must dig deep and allow it to fill our hearts and change us so we can stand strong when the floods come. This is the Christian service that those who are called and saved are now fellow workers with God. We are God’s building being built up for good works [see 1 Corinthians 3:9]. It does not matter who is planting or watering in the garden that God has put us in charge of. What is important is who is the center of our foundation.  Our focus is on our foundation, and we must build upon that foundation only and not on anything else like gold, silver, wood, hay, or straw [see 1 Corinthians 3:12]. The foundation will be tested stated the Apostle Paul in verse 13 of 1 Corinthians chapter 3.

In fact, the whole chapter 3 of 1 Corinthians should be read in context to where our foundation is laid. We are not to deceive ourselves as thinking we are wiser than others.  We are not to give glory to men. We are to glorify God in giving us, a sure foundation in Jesus Christ. We are one body in Christ, and we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus. This means that you are created to do good works and not evil works. This means that God has a plan for your life in being fellow workers in building upon the Kingdom of God. Working in the place where God has placed you and where you will grow to see the wisdom of God. We are all growing to become a holy temple in the Lord for a habitation of God through the Spirit states Paul in Ephesians chapter 2 verse 21-22. You need not feel alone for you are fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God [see verse 19 of Ephesians 2:19]. And in the same chapter of Ephesians 2 verse 20 it states that we “are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone.” I would say” hallelujah!” Is this not a blessing?

Yes, it is, for all things are yours, salvation, healing, eternal life, and much more. All things are possible through Christ Jesus, because he is the chief corner stone of a sure foundation. You can build upon Jesus Christ by digging deep into His foundation and allow him to build you up into a holy temple. Ask God to help you to become a holy temple today. Rely upon Him to give you the answers you seek. Make sure your foundation is built upon Christ only and not upon any other foundation that way you can have the full assurance of security.

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Kindness, Mercy

Put on Mercy and Kindness

“Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;”

Colossians 3:12

Mercy and kindness are seldom seen these days. It seems it takes too much effort in trying to show kindness. That may be the reason why we now have World Kindness Day. Did you know that it is a Holiday? According to the inspirekindness.com web site it is a Holiday and there are over 28 countries that participate in observance of this day which is on November 13, 2021. Some consider this a joke, but it is no joke. I encourage you to visit the web site Inspire Kindness to read more about it. This web site states that this movement started in Tokyo, Japan in 1997. This organization encourages people to be kind to others by doing one act of kindness to benefit someone else. Sometimes a movement like this helps us to understand the how and the way of blessing others by being kind. World Kindness Day is just around the corner on November 13th, so I thought why not get a head start by thinking and pondering about it now.  Asking God for guidance in this area in showing you someone you can bless will change your life in ways you cannot imagine.

The bible exclaims that Christians should put on bowels of mercy and kindness. Putting on mercy, kindness, meekness and longsuffering is profitable because of God’s love toward us. Have we not experienced this ourselves when we realized that we needed deliverance from the evil one and from our own sins? We all needed to be rescued from ourselves also because of our own selfishness and the desire of doing evil rather than good. Putting on means to immerse our minds in awareness and who we are in Christ. If we allow the peace of God to rule our hearts, then mercy and kindness will be a part of our life because we have been delivered through the mercy of God. The Hebrew word for kindness is [Che•sed], and it takes on the meaning of grace, mercy, kindness, and charity. It is to have mercy within our own hearts and to refrain from hurting or distressing others. I pray that we have not become so busy with our own lives that we do not think twice about sharing with others or showing mercy. I pray that we do not have to begrudgingly do an act of kindness.

Have you ever asked a child to take out the garbage and the child is grumbling about having to do it? The child is reluctant in doing this task. The child is unenthusiastic about doing this chore. I know I was as a child because I had other things in my mind like playing with my favorite toy or going out to play in the yard. A child cannot conceive in his or her mind that they are being helpful to their mother by doing this kind act. They have not been taught that this is an act of kindness by helping mom out in lightening her load of all the things she is doing in making a home clean and livable. Kindness is about helping others without thinking twice about doing and showing it. We really need more of this in our communities. I remember the song “Try a little Kindness,” that Glen Campbell sung in 1969. Just look at the second verse and you will see the real meaning to the song. Do not walk around the down and out, lend that helping hand instead of hesitation or doubt.

Don’t walk around the down and out
Lend a helping hand instead of doubt
And the kindness that you show every day
Will help someone along their way

We should all lend a helping hand without hesitation in doing good every day.  Isn’t the good works that Christians do helping others to see and glorify God?

You got to try a little kindness
Yes, show a little kindness
Just shine your light for everyone to see

Do you have a light to shine for everyone to see?  “Shine your light before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father, who is in heaven,” taught Jesus in Matthew 5:16. Are you a follower of Jesus? If you are then you have the light that can shine out to others. The light of love, peace, joy, gentleness, and goodness should flow out of you towards others. Kindness and mercy are what Jesus gives to all humanity. Pray and ask our Heavenly Father to put the salt of Jesus back into your life so you can shine the light and love of Jesus to others. Ask Him to restore your soul and give you strength. Ask Him to open ways of lending a helping hand by doing kindness towards others. Ask Him to help you every day to follow the good shepherd so that surely goodness and mercy can follow you every day.  This great song written by John W Peterson and Alfred Smith is based on Psalms 23, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”  Is the Lord your Shepherd?  Did the kind Shepherd find you?  I pray that He has and is now guiding each step of your way.  This song is an affirmation of your walk with God.  Listen to this song and sing it every day.  It will bless your soul.

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