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Showing posts from June 21, 2015

Prayer Life

We are encouraged to pray often, even daily, and so often it is easier to know what to pray for others than what to pray for ourselves. Prayer can become routine and seemingly empty of meaning. Does this mean we should stop praying? No, it means we need to look for examples of prayer that enlighten us to prayer as it should be. David came to the Lord often and in good and bad times in his life. He was clear about what he was asking for and confident that God would bring it to pass. Psalm 143 gives us a great example to follow in praying for ourselves. He said, "Show me the way I should go, for I lift up my soul. Rescue me from my enemies, oh Lord, for I hide myself in you. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground." (Psalm 143:8b-10) David asked for direction in difficulties. He needed to know what to say and do in specific situations that upon his life. He also asked for protection in the midst of adversity for his refuge wa…

Power Source

It's easy to take the position that we are the power source for our life. It is us who make things happen and us who determines the direction of our life. This is a narrow and selfish assumption. Elisha was a trainer of young prophets and like most young men, they had big dreams, one being a larger space for training down by the Jordan River. Wise Elisha does not stand in their way and goes with them to work on building this new training center. In order to build, one young prophet had borrowed an axe. But soon in the midst of his work the head of the axe flies off into the river. The young prophet considered the cost to buy it again at the local Home Depot but doesn’t have the money, so he considered this unforeseen accident the end of his ability to help in the dream. Elisha overheard his dismay and said, "'Where did it fall?' When he showed him the place, Elisha cut a stick and threw it there, and made the iron float. 'Lift it out,' he said. Then the man…

Fix

Most of us understand the idea of fixing our eyes on something. We have seen it when we found the girl or boy we love and fixed our eyes on them becoming our spouse. We fix our eyes on many things as we desire them like a new car, a home, an electronic devise, and a job. But there is another way in which we can fix our eyes. The writer of Hebrews speaks to this when he says, "Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Hebrews 12:2) Jesus focused on the joy of the end result as he endured the cross and finished his race sitting down at the right hand of the Father's throne in heaven. We are to look at his example, actions, struggles, and endurance for encouragement in our lives. We are to fix our eyes on his patience, his perseverance daily through life, and the endurance of inhuman punishment to bring sons to glory. That …

Trinity Survey Results

Several days ago I asked each of you to help me with a project. It concerned your understanding of the Trinity and the three Persons in it. You were asked to place the descriptive words down below "underneath whichever Person of the Trinity you identify them with." And, I added a special opportunity to suggest any other descriptive words. Twenty percent of you responded and here's what you thought: Father                        Son                 Holy Spirit Approachable                       2                      13                                0 Stern/Just                              14                    0                                  1 Friendly                                 1                      13                                2 Comforting                            1                      4                                  11 Powerful                                13                    1                                  3 Creative                       …

Full of Joy – Being Like Jesus Series #17

In our continuing series about ways in which we can be conformed to the image of Christ, we highlight one more: being full of joy by the Holy Spirit. Jesus had sent the seventy-two out to share the good news of the Messiah and now they returned to him joyful. They were filled with joy because "even the demons submit to us in your [Jesus'] name." (Luke 10:17) He redirects their joy by saying, "Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven." (10:20)  Then Luke records, "At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit" (10:21) began to praise God the Father because He had revealed things to these simple disciples that were changing their lives and had hidden them from seemingly wise and learned persons. Jesus was full of the Holy Spirit from the moment he was conceived and this was revealed to others on the day of his baptism when the Spirit descended "like a dove" on him as he came o…