Sunday, September 30, 2012

Keeping It Together

How can we not lose our souls when everything and everybody pulls us in the most different directions? How can we "keep it together" when we are constantly torn apart?

Jesus says: "Not a hair of your head will be lost. Your perseverance will win you your lives" (Luke 21:18-19).

We can only survive our world when we trust that God knows us more intimately than we know ourselves. We can only keep it together when we believe that God holds us together. We can only win our lives when we remain faithful to the truth that every little part of us, yes, every hair, is completely safe in the divine embrace of our Lord.

To say it differently: When we keep living a spiritual life, we have nothing to be afraid of.
- Henri Nouwen

Jesus is our Way of "keeping it together".

Saturday, September 29, 2012

The Best Part of the Good News

Too often it seems we look for the Kingdom of God in all the wrong places. Listen to where Jesus said the Kingdom of God is located:

They can't say, 'Here it is!' or 'There it is!' You see, the Kingdom of God is within you."
-- Luke 17:21 (GWT)
Lord, the Best Part of the Good News is that because the Kingdom is within us, then surely You, our King of Kings, reign on the throne of our lives. Let us not make become idolaters by searching here and there and everywhere for a kingdom, but give us eyes for You alone, our King of Glory!  Surely, if we seek You, our King, with all of our hearts, once we find You we will find Your Kingdom (within ourselves) as well. Amen. 
Thy Kingdom come, Thy will Be Done, within us, as it is in Heaven!

Friday, September 28, 2012

God Chooses Not to Remember Our Sins

My friend, Keith, sent me these words of encouragement from Max Lucado's writings. Be inspired.

His words. “And I will remember their sins no more.”
Wow! Now, that is a remarkable promise. God doesn’t just forgive, He forgets. He erases the board. He destroys the evidence. He burns the microfilm. He clears the computer. He doesn’t remember my mistakes. For all the things He does do, this is one thing He refuses to do. He refuses to keep a list of my wrongs. When I ask for forgiveness he doesn’t pull out a clipboard and say, “But I’ve already forgiven him for that five hundred and sixteen times.” He doesn’t remember.

Yes, indeed! “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”
It's not that God has amnesia. It's all because of what Christ accomplished on Calvary, that God chooses not to remember our sins! -- kw

When God looks at me, He only sees the Blood!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Commonly Practiced Form of Unbelief

Sometimes one thought is enough to fill a whole day. Such is this thought I am posting today:

Engaging in excessive planning in an attempt to control what will happen in the future is a commonly practiced form of unbelief.
-- Sarah Young

Lord, help our unbelief!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


I awoke early this morning in tears. Not because I had to get up early, but because I awoke from a heart-wrenching dream.

In the dream, my own son had become separated from our men's group in a large, confusing city and though I kept calling him on my cell phone there was no answer from his end. The group of men eventually all returned to one place but my son did not. Hope was vanishing quickly. My heart was so broken as I imagined all kinds of scenarios for my lost loved one.

Then I heard my cell phone ringing. It was the personal ringtone I have set for my son's incoming calls. I answered the phone on the first ring. The dream was over. I was awake in my bed and holding my cell phone. Yes, my son's ringtone is the same ringtone I have set for my cell phone alarm clock.

I got up out of bed and headed across the dark room towards the shower. I wept silently and asked the Lord, "Why do I have such dreams?" He didn't answer me immediately but a few moments later He did. It seemed He tenderly whispered this response to me:

"Kerry, since you have prayed and given Me permission to break your heart for what breaks Mine, I allowed your heart to be broken in a dream. Now you know more about how broken My heart is over the lostness of all of the precious sons and daughters I died to bring back Home to Me. They are in a state of confusing lostness. Though I keep calling them, they do not answer my calls from their end. Now you know more deeply how badly My heart is broken because I want My loved ones back in My family."

"Yes, Lord, I know," I sobbed. "How broken Your Holy heart must be."

As I turned on the shower,the pains of confusing lostness pierced into the depths of my broken heart like never before.

The Son came to seek and to save... The Father's lost sons and daughters.

P.S. My son loves the Lord with all of his heart. We hugged each other just a few minutes ago.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Save Us. Answer Us. Give Us Help!

(6) Save us with Your powerful hand, and answer us
so that those who are dear to You may be rescued.

(12) Give us help against the enemy
because human assistance is worthless.
-- Psalm 108:6,12 (GWT)

Save us, O Loving Lord, and please answer us with Your Loving Kindness. You surely give us help against our enemy. We trust only in The Lord, our GOD! Amen.

 Click here: Bob Bennett Hand of Kindness - YouTube


Monday, September 24, 2012

Fleeting Happiness or Forever Holiness

Let us once again hear a truth which our narcissistic age overlooks:
For it is not possible, in the nature of things, that a man should be happy who is not holy.
-- John Wesley

...those who are not holy will not see the Lord.
-- Hebrews 12:14b (NLT)

Lord, help me to know that Your highest goal for my life is not fleeting happiness, but forever holiness.


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Tempted to Fall? Endure!

There isn’t any temptation that you have experienced which is unusual for humans. God, who faithfully keeps His promises, will not allow you to be tempted beyond your power to resist. But when you are tempted, He will also give you the ability to endure the temptation as your way of escape.-- 1 Corinthians 10:13 (GWT)

When we are tempted to fall, Jesus wants to be our Endurance to keep standing. To "endure temptation" for me, means Jesus is walking in me and talking me through every temptation!  - kw

Definition of TEMPTATION

(1) the pressure to give in to a desire for easy or immediate pleasure.
(2) something that persuades one to perform an action for pleasure or gain.
Tempted to Fall? Endure!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Beware of Unbelief!

Beware of unbelief.
It dishonors God,
and it robs your soul of its heritage (inheritance).
-- Andrew Murray

By Faith! In Faith! (Hebrews 11)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Most Worthy to be Praised!

Looking at the sunrise this morning over the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia from a mountain-top perspective caused my soul to shout: "HOW MAJESTIC IS OUR GOD! INDEED HE IS MOST WORTHY TO BE PRAISED!"

Brian Arner recently encouraged our hearts during our local church's revival season. Below is a sample of his worship-filled singing for the glory of our Worthy GOD!

Click here: Worthy to be Praised Brian Arner YouTube

Holiness Unto The LORD!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Quit Trying

Let's quit trying to live our lives for Jesus and let's finally trust Him to live His life through us. -- Dr. Stephen Manley paraphrased
By Faith! In Faith! (Hebrews 11)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Avoid the Activity Addiction

Lord, by the passionate power of Your Holy Spirit within me, please allow me to avoid the activity addiction of this age. Lead me to be still before You more often than not, simply because I desire to be desperate for Your presence. Help me to be present in the present enjoying the present (the gift) of Your precious presence.
In Jesus' name. Amen.

Be Still and Know... God. (Psalm 46:10)

Monday, September 17, 2012

From Life into Sin, From Sin into Life

Because of the first Adam, we died out of Life into Sin, which leads to death.
Because of the Second Adam (Jesus), we can now die out of Sin and reenter into Life.
 My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
-- Galatians 2:20 (NLT)
Holiness Unto The LORD!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Live Triumphant Over Sin & Death

For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and His gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ.
-- Romans 5:17 (NLT)
Holiness Unto The LORD!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Worship & Warfare

If we will be certain to care about God in spiritual worship,
He will surely take care of us in spiritual warfare.
Holiness unto The LORD!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Let Us Focus On The Wounded One

Let us not focus on our own wounds, but let's focus on the One Who was wounded for us!

We must focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith. He saw the joy ahead of him, so He endured death on the cross and ignored the disgrace it brought Him. Then He received the highest position in heaven, the one next to the throne of God.
-- Hebrews 12:2 (GWT)

He was wounded for our rebellious acts.
He was crushed for our sins.
He was punished so that we could have peace,
and we received healing from His wounds.
-- Isaiah 53:5 (GWT)

They will look on Me whom they have pierced and mourn for Him as for an only Son. They will grieve bitterly for Him as for a firstborn Son who has died.
-- Zechariah 12:10b (NLT)


Thursday, September 13, 2012

When We Back Up On Christ?

There's no point in Christianity where we can back up on Christ and still be truly Christian.
-- Dr. Stephen Manley

23 Examine me, O God, and know my mind.
Test me, and know my thoughts.
24 See whether I am on an evil path.
Then lead me on the everlasting path.

-- Psalm 139:23-24 (GWT)

Lord, please correct any and all spiritual slippage in my life. I want to live totally true to You for forever and today, so as to honor Your holy name and never break Your heart or ever bring a reproach on You. Amen.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Under The Holy Spirit's Control

Our heart and life are to be entirely and unceasingly under The Holy Spirit's control. In prayer we are to be led by The Holy Spirit every day and every hour. In His power our life is to be a direct and continual abiding in the love and fellowship of Jesus.
-- Andrew Murray
Lord, Teach Us To Pray!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I Depend On Your Prayers

Years ago while in Bible college, my missions professor, Dr. Phyllis Perkins read a letter to our class from a missionary. The final line in the missionary's letter was: "I depend on your prayers." I have never forgotten the heart-wrenching plea.

As a local pastor now for over 18 years, I know firsthand what the missionary meant. I too depend on the prayers of God's people. Sometimes people pray for me by e-mail. Below is a sample of a prayer that one dear person recently offered to Almighty God on my behalf:

Heavenly Father, we thank you today for your work in creation and the abundant blessings that we have as Your children.
We thank you for the glorious gospel; the gift of your Son Jesus Christ as the one mediator between God and man.
Thank you for the gift of pastor, which your Word says you gave to your church "to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ" (Ephesians 4:12, 13).

Thank you for Pastor Kerry and his faithfulness to your cause, for the Bible says, "it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful" (1 Corinthians 4:2).
Thank you for his personal commitment to Jesus Christ as his Lord and Saviour and to the Word of God.
Thank you for the love he has for his wife and family demonstrating a stable and healthy family. For the Scripture says of church leadership, "he must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect" (1 Timothy 3:4).
Thank you for his thoughtful exposition of your Word, as he heeds your call to "Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction" (2 Timothy 4:2).
Thank you for his leadership in our church services and the orderly manner in which he leads us, seeking to fulfill the Biblical call that "all things be done decently and in order" (1 Corinthians 14:40).
Thank you for his interest in the flock under his care and the burden that he carries for your people.
Thank you for Kim and her compliment to his leadership and her service and thoughtfulness as well.
May you continue to confer your richest blessing upon this ministry couple as they seek to fulfill their call amongst us and thus bring You glory.
In the powerful name of Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.
Note:The humbling thing about the prayer above, is that I am not formally the pastor of this precious praying person, but they have adopted me as their own. I am humbled beyond measure, because indeed I do depend on the prayers of God's people.


Monday, September 10, 2012

Live in His Love or Die in Our Sin

Let us choose to live in the Father's House of Love or else we will die in our pig pen of sin!

And I will dwell (live) in the house of the Lord forever.
-- Psalm 23:6b (KJV)

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Holy Light

These four words hang on a professionally painted board over the exit doors of our local church sanctuary:
"Holiness Unto The Lord!"

And four more words are painted above the front exit doors of our local church foyer:
"Be Light! Go Shine!"

Click here: Go Light your World, by: Kathy Troccoli - YouTube

Let us go with His Holiness to light our world!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Delivered From the Destructions That Awaited

He sent out His Word and healed them, snatching them from the door of death.
-- Psalm 107:20 (NLT)

Here is Adam's Clarke's commentary on Psalm 107:20:

He spoke: "Be thou clean, be thou whole;" and immediately the disease departed; and thus they were delivered from the destructions that awaited them.

There is Hope and Healing in the Name of Our Lord!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Stress? Out!

One morning as I was asking the Lord to help me, yes, to heal any uneasiness within me, it seemed He replied, "Child, you must first invite Me to help Myself to your unbelief."

"Yes!" was my immediate and passionate response. I prayed:

Search me completely, Lord,
until it can be said that my life is not "stressed out",
but "STRESS? OUT!"

Holiness Unto The LORD!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Obvious Masks that Scared People Wear

A while back, my wife and I visited New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, for the very first time. One of the shops we browsed in near the riverfront had walls and walls covered with masks for the annual Mardi Gras "celebrations". It got me thinking about the many masks we are tempted to put on in our everyday lives.

Perhaps there are no more obvious masks that scared people wear, yes, no more positive proofs of full-bloom fear than when we are found in these two destructive disguises:
#1: arrogance and #2: isolation.

I am so blessed to be an island boy by birth, but I have no desire to live now and/or die later as an island. No, I am not independent! I pray that I will never again be found posing in arrogance and/or lost in isolation.

We really do need each other.
-- Rueben Welch

Grateful... indeed!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Truth Trampled in the Ground

I only have to look around,
to see Truth being trampled in the ground.

My heart cries out: "Lord raise a voice,
to make it clear, we have a choice."

"I am here, though frail and weak,
Yet through my life, You still can speak."

Instead of being up-in-arms,
down-on-my-knees, I sound alarms.

TRUTH was buried once before,
But on Day Three, YOU opened Heaven's Door.

I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life...
and I am alive forevermore! -- Jesus

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Goals And Gifts

If we set out to achieving future goals apart from appreciating past gifts, once we arrive we will find we have only journeyed to a dead end destination.

Let us be forever...

Monday, September 3, 2012

When We Bear One Another's Burdens...

Could it be that when we bear one another's burdens, fears, and stresses, we realize more quickly an eternal perspective, that is, God's holy point of view on burdens, fears, and stresses?

Help carry each other’s burdens. In this way you will follow Christ’s teachings.
-- Galatians 6:2 (GWT)

Let's have sibling compassion as children of Father God.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Your Eternal Joy, My Temporary Fears

Just a thought...

Whenever I enter into the griefs, pains, sighs, and stresses of other Jesus-believers, I almost always emerge with my own burdens undeniably lightened. Within the community of spiritual suffering, God's holy, eternal perspective somehow correctly focuses the lens of my life so that I can view my temporary fears and concerns as just that, temporary.

Lord, don't let Your eternal joy escape my life when my temporary fears threaten to steal it. In Jesus' name. Amen.

What joy awaits both the planter and the harvester alike!
-- Words of Jesus in John 4:36b (NLT)

Holiness Unto The LORD!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

We Will Hear The Holy Spirit Speak Within Us

When we are spiritually free, we do not have to worry about what to say or do in unexpected, difficult circumstances. When we are not concerned about what others think of us or what we will get for what we do, the right words and actions will emerge from the center of our beings because the Spirit of God, who makes us children of God and sets us free, will speak and act through us.
-- Henri Nouwen

"Don't be naive. Some people will impugn your motives, others will smear your reputation—just because you believe in Me. Don't be upset when they haul you before the civil authorities. Without knowing it, they've done you—and Me—a favor, given you a platform for preaching the kingdom news! And don't worry about what you'll say or how you'll say it. The right words will be there; the Spirit of your Father will supply the words."
-- Words of Jesus in Matthew 10:17-20 (MSG)

Let's continue to trust the Hoy Spirit of the Living God who reigns within us, so that we can live in complete freedom even in a world that desires to give us over to those who would unfairly judge us and incorrectly evaluate us according to their own self-centered motives of rebellion and self-righteous mindsets of religion.

Lord, remind us that You are our Audience of One. Amen.