Monday, March 07, 2016

Monday's Thought of the Day !!

And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you. – Romans 8:11 (NIV)

If the Holy Spirit lives in us we will have life, not just in Heaven, but right now.  But what does this mean?  Does it mean that the Holy Spirit is what keeps our pulse going, our hearts beating, our lungs expanding our brain functioning?  

What Paul wants us to understand is that God's Holy Spirit is what gives us life worth living.  When we have the Holy Spirit within us, we have meaning because we are doing what we were created to do.  We were created with the purpose of connecting to God in a relationship of sacrificial love. It's only then that we will be totally complete.  Nothing else in this world will give us true life.

So what does this mean for us?  Will we be happy all the time?  For a select few it seems like it.  These are the ones who've submitted their lives so totally to God that even when they're persecuted or go through trials they see it as a time of leaning on Christ.  This doesn't happen overnight though.  It comes with surrendering more and more daily.  But with our surrendering and emptying ourselves of the world, more room is made for God to come in.  

Maybe you're not there yet and you struggle like most of us with trials and hardships.  Think about how much worse they would be if you did not have the Holy Spirit in you because you had not let Jesus into your heart.  There would be no Rock, no Foundation to lean on.  Think about how you would grieve loved ones who've died.  There would be no hope for them after they are gone...or you either.

Jesus came to bring life and through the Holy Spirit we can receive that life.  Let us surrender more and more until we've got so much life in us that every moment can be one of joy...even when things are difficult for us to get through.

In the love of Christ,


Thursday, March 03, 2016

Thursday's Thought of the Day !!

Don't speak evil against each other, my dear brothers and sisters. If you criticize each other and condemn each other, then you are criticizing and condemning God's law. – James 4:11 (NLT)

How many times during the week will we be given the opportunity to say something ugly about someone?  How many times will somebody make us mad and "deserve" an unkind rebuke?  How many times will we want to explode into a tirade of "colorful metaphors" when somebody messes up our order at the drive-thru?  

We are given many opportunities to give in to anger, jealousy, envy and a whole host of other things that stem from hatred, which is what all these can eventually lead to if not held in check.  When given the opportunity, will you give in to the temptation to speak evil against someone?  Or will you rise above the situation, relying on the strength of God and remembering your own imperfections, to hold your tongue (or your thoughts if that be the case)?

May God bless those who have a desire to be blessings to others (even when they deem them undeserving).

In the love of Christ,

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Wednesday's Thought of the Day !!

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. – John 14:27 (TNIV)

There is a difference in the peace that we get from the world and the peace we receive from Christ.  The world's idea of peace is the absence of conflict.  But there will always be conflict in a sinful world.  

Jesus' gift of peace is what gets us through not only the good times, but also those times of conflict.  When you have a sick child…when you're stressed over your job…when you aren't sure how the bills will get paid, these are times when we don't think about peace.  That is, unless we seek it from the only one who can give it without any strings attached.

When speaking of this verse of scripture in his Explanatory Notes on the New Testament, John Wesley wrote these words.

"Lord, evermore give us this peace!  How serenely may we pass through the most turbulent scenes of life, when all is quiet and harmonious within!  Thou hast made peace through the blood of the cross."  

This is the peace of Christ…when no matter what's going on outside, there is quiet and harmonious within.  Do not let your hearts be troubled.  Do not let them be afraid. 

Do you know this kind of peace today?  Do you truly feel that you'll be taken care of in a dangerous situation?  Can you take the laughter or jabs or innuendos of unbelievers when you stand up for what's right or share Christ with them?  When someone has brought you pain can you allow yourself to be healed within from the One who created you?

May you have the peace of Christ with you today and forevermore.

In the love of Christ,


Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Tuesday's Thought of the Day !!

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. –  2 Corinthians 4:17-18 (NIV)

We see many things in this world from the beauty of creation to the ugliness that we can make of God's creation.  We also see struggles; ours and other people's.  

But the fact is that none of these things will last forever.  There will come a day when our eyes will be opened to unimagined beauty.  We will experience things in a whole new way; a way that won't be troubling anymore.  

We have a choice in life of whether or not to accept this future.  When we place our hope and trust in Christ Jesus, coming into a relationship with God, we will be fixing our eyes on what is unseen, eternal and perfect.  It's this hope that can get us through any temporary troubles that come our way.  

Be blessed with the hope of salvation today as Christ abides in you through the power of the Holy Spirit.

In the love of Christ,


Monday, February 29, 2016

Monday's Thought of the Day !!

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. – John 1:9 (NLT)

Forgiveness.  It might not be something we think about on a daily basis, but is something we need so badly.  If a friend or family member holds a legitimate grudge over us for something we've done or said, it will affect us more than we can know.  This is because it affects us deeply in the heart.  We might try to outwardly hide it or inwardly wish it away, but it continues to hurt us.  It's painful because we know what we did was wrong.  We know that we would love to take it back, but can't go back in time.  And we know that we can't control the person that we've harmed to make them forgive us.  We can apologize.  We can try to make amends.  But we cannot control the situation.

We've all sinned according to Paul in Romans.  None of us has been the perfect child to God.  We've been selfish and prideful.  We've struggled to obey His commands. We've placed something in our lives before Christ.  We might be guided by His love and seek to love others, but there will simply be times when we will fail.  And when we are in love with our Savior, our Father in Heaven, the Spirit that resides in us, we pain ourselves when we have let Him down.  

That's where forgiveness comes in.  No matter what we've done or how far we've gone, God's love goes farther and reaches deeper.  We cannot out-sin God's forgiveness.  He says if you love me you will obey me.  He also points out that when we fail to obey, we can repent (or change).  Part of what makes this repentance genuine is confession.  Confession shows that we know we are wrong as well as being the beginning of our own healing.  When we confess, God forgives.  He begins the healing process.  He brings us back under his wings and tells us that what we've confessed is no more.  

In the love of Christ,


Thursday, February 25, 2016

Thursday's Thought of the Day !!

He who guards his lips guards his life, but he who speaks rashly will come to ruin. – Proverbs 13:3 (NIV) 

What comes out of our mouths cannot be put back in.  What we say can heal or increase goodness.  But it can also ruin relationships.  Be careful of what you say and how you say it, for you never know the lasting effects.  

The same goes with notes or letters that are written.  The same goes with texts and emails.  Let us not forget that every word written or typed, once the send button is hit has gone out just as if came straight from our mouths.  For words, spoken or written, show the love in our hearts or the hollowness of them.  Which will your words show today?

In the love of Christ,