Sunday, June 28, 2009

Spectacular Suffering...

When we belong exclusively to God and we sense we have been hurt by people, we must choose from one of two stances:

#1: Am I mistreated by people?


#2: Am I crucified with Christ?

Let's choose "crucified with Christ" because it means we are not alone in our suffering. Suffering at the hands of others can either leave us experiencing the agony of increased isolation, yes all alone, or with the awesome experience of increased intimacy with our Lord. Yes, even suffering can be called "spectacular suffering" if we embrace the Galatians 2:20 stance as our own.

Galatians 2:20 (NIV) -- I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Not a Trace of Resentment

Dearest My Lord Jesus:

In the wake of the words You spoke in Your Sermon on the Mount of Beatitudes, yes Your soul-searching words recorded in Matthew 5:23-24, this is my personal and passionate prayer:

Lord, let there not be a trace of resentment -- either expressed or suppressed -- in my life towards another. Amen.


Matthew 5:23-24 (NIV) -- (23) "Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, (24) leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift."

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Galatians One & Romans One

Multiplied blessings to you!

If you need a chapter in the New Testament to saturate in for a few days, I invite to look at two that have me locked in. It's a good thing, but mostly a God-thing.
(1) Galatians 1
(2) Romans 1


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Breathe Proverbs 3:5-6

Proverbs 3:5-6 has been an especially inviting passage for my seeking soul over the years and over these past few days it's really been calling my name aloud. So here's a prescription if you need some good medicine from God's Word for your soul:

Read Proverbs 3:5-6.
Pray Proverbs 3:5-6.
Obey Proverbs 3:5-6.
Inhale Proverbs 3:5-6.
Exhale Proverbs 3:5-6.

Proverbs 3:5-6 -- Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.


Saturday, June 13, 2009

Faith's Reward

Yes, faith must be committed;
Because, faith is going to be tested;
So that, faith can be rewarded!
God's voice is the reward of committed and tested faith. <'(())><


Thursday, June 11, 2009

Creative Loafing

As this season of summer is underway, don't spend all of your time racing and sweating. Take some time for resting and Sabbathing. I define Sabbathing in two words -- creative loafing.

Lord Jesus, in Your name, I have asked for and received the Promised Gift of the Father, Your Holy Spirit. Now, by Your Spirit, please cause me to know a simultaneous and healthy balance between adoration, occupation, recreation, and restoration. Move false guilt far from my life and let me seek seasons of creative loafing that I may know You and make You known to others. Let Your holy presence, not my human performance, attract others to You. Recreate within my heart, mind, soul, and strength the rhythm of a right relationship with You -- not just for me, but for Your glory and for the good of others. Amen.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Outlast It!

Patient endurance is what you need now, so you will continue to do God's will. Then you will receive all that He has promised. Hebrews 10:36 (NLT)

I often say to others "Longevity is the greatest convincer! So, I will be content to just let my life -- over the longhaul -- be my argument."


Monday, June 8, 2009

Hear and Heed

Seven strong words from Ephesians 4:30 are on my heart this morning. Let's hear and heed the Apostle Paul's counsel: And do not grieve the Holy Spirit...


Saturday, June 6, 2009

Ears Wide Open

Here's a little, original prayer chorus that I wrote down on a sticky note while driving my vehicle one Tuesday morning after meeting with my Pastor's Prayer Patrol. Ever since I first heard it in my head, I've been singing it from my heart as The Holy Spirit is ever-faithful to bring it to mind:

God the Father, God the Son,
God the Holy Spirit... One.
Reign in me, with purity.
Let Your perfect will be done.

Are you familiar with this irresistible invitation from Almighty God recorded in Isaiah 55:3? Come to Me with your ears wide open... (NLT)

My God, teach me to pray, help me to listen, encourage me to obey everything You say. I want to live for Your glory from a totally surrendered heart. In the name of the One called Wonderful I pray. Amen.


Friday, June 5, 2009

Great. Greater. Greatest.

This thought is on my mind today: Instead of focusing on doing something great for God with your life, let God become greater in your life, because He is Greatest and He is Life!

He must become greater; I must become less. (Words of John the Baptist about Jesus the Christ recorded in John 3:30.)


Thursday, June 4, 2009

Overworking or Overflowing?

Are our lives defined by "overworking for the Lord" or "overflowing with the Lord?" Overworking leads to religion and perhaps even idolatry, that is, alienation from God. Overflowing is all about fulfilling relationship and increased intimacy with Immanuel, yes, God with us, that is, adoration of God.

In my life, Lord, be magnified, be glorified, be satisfied. Give me the desires of my heart, only if my desires are one with the desires of Your heart. I do desire to live moment-by-moment in the overflow of Your presence, purity, power, peace. I exist that you might reveal Yourself through my life. I earnestly pray, as always, in Your name, my King, the Nazarene. Amen.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Peace. Peace. Peace.

Let us be encouraged with these Old Testament Words in Isaiah 26:3 (NLT) -- You (GOD) will keep in perfect PEACE all who trust in You, whose thoughts are fixed on You!

And let us be inspired by this New Testament portrait of PEACE recorded in Mark 4:39 (NKJV) --Then He (JESUS) arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "PEACE, be still!" And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.

Finally, let us live outloud these words penned by The Apostle Paul in Ephesians 4:3 (NLT) -- Always keep yourselves united in The Holy Spirit, and bind yourselves together with PEACE.


Monday, June 1, 2009

A Simple Prayer of Trust

This is the prayer I am praying today. Join me in praying it if you choose:

Lord, I want to work with You, not for You. Teach me the joyful difference between "doing something for you" and simply "serving in total surrender" as I sing "Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus." Amen.

As one songwriter penned, I also testify:

"It's not in trying, but in trusting;
It's not in running, but in resting;
It's not in wondering, but in praying;
That we find strength from the Lord."