Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Wednesday's Thought of the Day !!

And all of us have had that veil removed so that we can be mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of the Lord. And as the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more and more like him and reflect his glory even more. – 2 Corinthians 3:18 (NLT) 

Is the Spirit of the Lord being reflected in your life?  Or do others see something else when they look at you? 

Be honest.  I hear so often "Well, I hope...."  Don't look at what you hope is true or what you would like to be true.  Take a good hard look at yourself today and ask yourself what others would say that they see in you if they were completely honest with you.  How many would say that they see a selfish person or a hypocrite?  How many would say that they see someone who is prideful...or how about undependable...or how about quick to become angry...or how about neglectful of others' feelings?  I'm sure I couldn't count the number of times that these have been what others have seen in me over my life. 

How many would say that when they look at you they see a little piece of Christ?  My desire is that when people look at me they see a small reflection of the one who lives in me.  My goal needs to be to be more reflective of Him and less of me.  How about you? 

In the love of Christ,

greg

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Tuesday's Thought of the Day !!

Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later. Romans 8:18 (NLT)

It’s like Paul has a set of scales and on one side is our suffering.  This suffering is weighing down the scale.  It seems as though the weight of it will break the scales.  All the heartbreak we’ve had in our lives, all the pain caused by others, all the physical maladies we’ve lived with, the loved ones lost, the dreams dashed, not to mention the suffering we’ve come across for the sake of Christ (being ostracized for doing right, losing close friendships because we’ve become different people, and so on).

Then he puts the glory that will be revealed to us, His children, on the other side and it falls to the bottom as if nothing were on the other side.  Nothing compares to the greatness of knowing Jesus and all his glory.  Absolutely nothing.  

There is much that God does for us now, but Paul is looking to the future glory that He has in store for us here.  I can only imagine what it will be like to step into the glory of Heaven one day.

Think about it for a moment.  In the first few moments of being in Heaven what do you think you’ll see?  Well, first off there’s Jesus.  That’s a pretty good beginning.  But beyond that I imagine much brighter colors than I’ve ever seen.  I can see them with more clarity that my earthly eyes have never been able to use.  There might even be colors that we’ve not even seen in this lifetime.  I believe for the first time I will see what it feels like to have absolutely no pain, no depression weighing me down, no resentment or feelings of jealousy, no feelings of loss.  There will only be joy, pure complete joy.

Imagine that for just a moment.  Imagine that it’s not for a time, a season or even a lifetime.  Imagine it’s for eternity.  Now do you more completely understand what Paul means when he says, “Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later”?  

We can read over this, even glance over it as another of the many great verses in the Bible.  But let it sink in this day.  I can only imagine.

In the love of Christ,

greg

Monday, February 08, 2016

Thought of the Day !!

Today's thought is different.  I've been looking at Psalm 51 this morning.  I encourage you to do the same.  I've rewritten the Psalm in the form of a prayer for us to pray today.

Psalm 51 (Paraphrased as a prayerful devotional)

Have mercy on me, O Lord.
Wash away my sins.
My sin is always before me,
   and you are right in your judgement of me.
I've always sinned, ever since my birth.
You desire better from me.
Wash me, O Lord, and I will be clean.
Let me find my happiness and joy in you.
Create in me a pure heart.
May this pure heart remain in me and never cease.
Do not cast me way,
   or take your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore me to the joy that comes only from 
   knowing your salvation.
Grant me a willing spirit to stay in your ways.
I will then show others.
I will teach them about you.
They will see.  
They will see that you are truly the Way, the Truth, the Life.
Save me so that I might sing your praises, Lord.
Church attendance and money in offering plates
   are not what you desire from us.
You prefer our hearts to be in love with you and with
   our fellow human beings.
Then, and only then, will our sacrifices of time and money
   be acceptable to you.
Build up your Church, O Lord, so that we will be pleasing to you.

May God bless and keep you today as you make Psalm 51 your prayer.

In the love of Christ,

greg

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Thursday'a Thought of the Day !!

O LORD, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress. – Isaiah 33:2 (NIV)

Our days may be planned out, but we never know when something will come in and mess up our plans.  Surprises can happen at any time that will derail us.  But when we rely on God's strength each day, He will see us through the days that go according to planned, as well as those that don't. 

This verse from Isaiah sounds like a good prayer to begin the day with.  "O Lord, my God, please be gracious to me today for I long to be with you constantly.  Be my strength this morning and save me from all the distress that will come my way this day."

In the love of Christ, 

greg

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Wednesday's Thought of the Day !!

At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?"  He called a child, whom he put among them, and said, "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. –  Matthew 18:1-3 (NRSV) 

There was a little girl who attended church and Sunday school each week.  She loved her church and wanted to be there all the time.  One day at school an older boy who was picking on her told her that there was no such thing as God.  He kept telling her that she was just a little girl and that she didn't know anything.  Finally he asked her, "Why do you believe?"  She responded very simply with "I just do".   

Later in life when she was older and in the workplace and confronted with the same question, she made a very similar response, but she would always add that her faith gave her hope.  Without it, life just wouldn't be worth living.   

Jesus didn't want us to become childish.  He wanted us to become childlike.  There is something about a child, or more specifically for today's thought, a child's faith that is incredible.  They simply believe.  So often we become calloused by the world in which we live in and lose some (or all) of our childlike faith.   

Sometimes we can't know all the answers.  We have to rely on a childlike faith and the hope that it brings us.   

In the love of Christ,

greg