Monday, September 29, 2014

Come on, do you really expect me to believe.....

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Matthew 19: 26

...that the Child in the manger is the very God of the universe,
the incarnate Son of the living God come of His own
volition to do His Father's will.

...that the very star shining as a beacon ushering light into
a darkened world, guiding eastern wise men and amazing
shepherds was placed into existence by that same baby

...that this child in the manger was immaculately conceived,
born of a virgin as both fully human and fully God.

...that this child born into insignificance would walk briefly
through this world proclaiming the good news of God's
plan for reconciliation; a plan that could only be brought
into being through the sacrifice of His beloved Son, this
baby in the manger.

...that the one and only answer to the questions,' Who
am I, why am I here, and where am I going' lies in the
word...the truth...the love of this Christ Jesus.

NO! I do expect you to believe these miraculous truths
without the reaching out of God towards you, without a
trip into the Holy Book, without a willingness to learn
and desire the process of salvation through grace, faith
and the realization that we, as created, can only be saved
by He who created us. Unless He reaches out to you in
love, you will never be able to accept the Truth.

Why not kneel down and ask God to come into you
heart and into your life. After all, you belong to Him.

Praise God!

Thursday, September 25, 2014


 Romans 8:28 
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

I remember an old joke about a set of parents who send their son
on an errand and move away before he comes back. Well, in
a slightly different arena of events, I moved to join my daughter and
son in law and due to God's circumstances, they moved away. I
became stuck 900 miles from the loved ones I had so fervently
wanted to be near.


So here was an excellent opportunity to put into action that
which I have come to say, write about and hope to put
into practice, God's sovereign goal of fashioning me into the
image of Christ should have allowed me to put my faith in His
good will, His plan, His provision. How did I do?


I have fretted, worried, questioned, felt sorry for myself; you
name the signs of weakness and I have lived them. It's not
as if this was serious like the struggles many are living through
each day. This was an inconvenience, a little roadblock, a
small bump in the road.


So what's to learn, here? I know that God will forgive my
terrible lack of understanding and patience, I know this is
a process, I know I have shown that there is plenty of room
for the continuing transformation by the Holy Spirit in my
life and I feel this will give me, with God's  grace, the realization
that I have every reason to trust Jesus and every reason to
express my gratitude.


Maybe next time it won't be, 'Whoops, I did it again!'
Maybe next time I will abide more steadfastly in Lord Jesus,
my shepherd and King.

How could I not? Praise God!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

THE promise keeper!!!

 Numbers 23: 19  God is not a man, so He does not lie. He is not human, so He does not change His mind. Has He ever spoken and failed to act? Has He ever promised and not carried it through?                                                                                

Ever break a promise? I am going to guess that we all have. Circumstances change, situations sometimes call for a change
of heart or maybe we have just moved on and no longer
care about something we promised. There can be damage, though,
if our failure to keep a promise impacts us or others.


You know the old expression 'Don't make promises that
you cannot keep.' Well in practice that would seem to be good
advice but, perhaps, poor living. We all want to serve others,
be dependable and follow through; so we will make
well meaning promises.


On an eternal level, we know that to have faith in what God
says, we must depend upon His promise. He has promised
through the redemptive work of Jesus, to lift us up on the
Last Day, drawing us to Him, washed clean of sins, able
to enter bravely into the family of God as adopted children. We have
been promised these things as a result of our declaration
of faith, trust and belief on Jesus as our prophet, priest
and king. We have been born up through death of our former
selves into life through the power of Jesus.


The reason, therefore, that we can live our lives looking ahead
through and past death is because God made a promise. God
chose not to avoid making promises because HE NEVER


We, being human and broken, will sometimes fail to follow
through....God will not!


Praise Him!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Sweeet Lord, where are you walking?

"When men sought to make Him a king, he fled; now that they
have come to kill Him, He goes out to meet them."
Rudolph Steir

John 18: 4
Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to Him, went out
and asked them, "Who is it you want?"
"Jesus of Nazareth," they replied.
"I am He," Jesus replied......

"If you are looking for Me, then let these men go."

One who loves and cherishes Jesus cannot, it seems to me,
help but feel so powerfully moved by these events. It is
enough that the Lord Jesus had been beset by terrible emotional
turmoil at the thought of what He knew must soon take
place. Now He is fully aware that a mob of men: soldiers,
Pharisees and Judas, the one who betrayed Him, have come
to set in motion a terrible, yet ultimately triumphant series of
He actually had to wait for them to regain their feet after being
knocked, literally, to the ground when He told them, "I am."
He asks them once again who they seek.

Here, in a most truly amazing picture of the love and
compassion of our Savior, He seeks that His beloved be
let go. Even staring at what was to come, His concerns
are for His flock.

One need look no further than the tug at ones heart to understand
the amazing love of our Christ. He is God and King forever.
He is the answer. He is truth.

Praise God!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Allow me to introduce my Father: GOD!

John 14: 7

If you really know me you will know my Father as well. From now
on you do know Him and have seen Him.

   God is an overwhelming concept. He, in all His attributes, is
at the center of every Christian's life; yet, none of us could
describe Him, for no one has seen Him.

   In the times of the Old Testament, it was commonly believed that
to see God meant death. That is why Moses climbed up leaving
the Israelites below, for they could not be allowed to see the face
of the Holy One.

   We know that through the work of Christ on the cross, the veil
separating God and man has been removed. God is no longer
inaccessible. Jesus, throughout His precious three-year ministry,
tried His best to explain that He, Jesus, was and is the personal
revelation of the Father.  John 10:30  I and the Father are one.

   Jesus, through scripture, is described as one not standing
out in physical appearance so as to be different. Yet His glory
is momentarily exposed in the Transformation. He is the
embodiment of God, the lamb and the lion. full of power,
strength, compassion and loving-kindness. Want to know
God? Read the words of Jesus. Want to see God? See the
life Jesus lived. He is the one sent for the purpose of
revealing God to all. After all....He was and is God... from
everlasting to everlasting.. from alpha to omega.. even
to and beyond the end of the age.

   God is close by; in your heart, hidden no longer. If you get
very quiet, you can hear His gentle whisper in your soul!

Praise God.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

You will sin and you can't hide it!

Psalms 5:4 For You [are] not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness, Nor shall evil dwell with You. 5 The boastful shall not stand in Your sight; You hate all workers of iniquity. 6 You shall destroy those who speak falsehood; The Lord abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man.
It has been said or written that one can tell the true nature of a
person by what he or she does when no one is watching. It does
seem true that being in the midst of others might act as a
deterrent to doing wrong; yet, our very nature assures us that
we will sin.
If it weren't of eternal significance, one could almost find humor
in the way people deal, at times, with sin. We create our own
hierarchy of sin. The little "insignificant" ones aren't so bad as
the nasty ones. The sins done by "bad" people are surely more
reprehensible than those little mistakes by a good person. Plus
if we aren't caught...... did a sin really happen?
We have a problem when it comes to God and sin. He doesn't like any
sin. He must punish all sin to remain true to His holy, righteous
nature. What's even more problematic is the fact that He knows
of all our sins- every one- and we cannot hide them from Him. We
can pull the covers over our head, close all the blinds and curtains,
even build a lead-lined fallout shelter; He knows. In fact He knows
of each sin before we commit it.
Accepting Jesus into our hearts, believing on Him and being
adopted into the family of God means we have been forgiven
our sins once for all; yet, even then we sin.
I would suggest that we listen to the Holy Spirit, recognize our
sins, go to God and present them openly AND use the fact that
we cannot hide them as a mighty help in avoiding them in the
first place. Christ took our sins on His back to the tree
at Golgotha; we need not add even one to His precious sacrifice
if we can avoid it.
Praise God!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Why did you come, Lord Jesus?

He came to do the will of His Father.
He came to be the final word, the final prophet of God.
He came to save sinners.
He came as a representative of man.
He came to tabernacle among us.
He came to remove the veil, to open to all who
   would believe, access to the Living God.
He came to know the true suffering and dilemma of mankind.
He came to serve as a servant.
He came to heal the sick.
He came to share the Good News of the gospel of forgiveness.
He came to fulfill the prophets.
He came to accomplish the Law.
He came to be the scapegoat.
He came to make God known to us.
He came to do what He agreed in the covenant of the God-head.
He came to be the light against the darkness.
He came to defeat death.
He came to offer hope, meaning and fullness of life.
He came to pay the debt of the sins of mankind.
He came to exchange His righteousness for our sins.
He came to live among the sinners.

He came willingly.
He came to die a brutal death, abandoned and reviled.
He came as God and man, fully each.

He will come again to judge the world and to call His
   flock to Himself, King of all creation for evermore!

   Come Jesus, come.
Praise God!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Cherish that inferiority complex!

I will never forget the pastor at the small Texas church that I attend
saying that self-esteem was not important; Jesus esteem was preferred
and needed. Well this flew right in the face of what I had centered my entire teaching
career around- the need to help all students believe in their ability to
learn and be successful.
   To be reborn into the life that gets turned upside down when Jesus
becomes Lord, one must become lesser, a servant, dependent, willing
to not be primary, first, me-centered. Let me tell you about me becomes let me tell you about Him. How can I get ahead becomes how can I do what brings glory to God. Rather than strive for the recognition, one seeks to give Praise for blessings given.
You see, when Christ turns a life upside down, He is taking a
life which was already inverted beyond recognition and righting
the ship, so to speak.
   John the Baptist made it clear to those who traveled into the
desert that he was not a prophet, not the messiah. He was
not even worthy to touch the sandals of the One who was to
come. Well, we are all John the Baptist when we consider the
person of the God/ man, Christ Jesus. We are unworthy
of the grace that He has proclaimed because He, who created
everything that was ever created, came willingly to die for our
   Consider the image of this incarnate God kneeling before His
disciples cleaning their feet. Serving them. Kneeling before them.
Loving them.
   Cherish being inferior. It is what we are; yet, we are not
unimportant! We are His beloved sheep and He will love us
into eternity!
Praise God!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

The Painter is NOT the painting!

John 1: 3

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome[a] it.  John 1: 3

I had a memorable conversation recently with a neighbor who. with his wife and young
son, had just moved to America. He has no social security card, no green card and speaks
very little English. He is from Czech Republic, and upon hearing that I was an English
teacher, wanted to just talk "English."

Well the conversation headed toward a discussion of God. I asked him to tell me about God.
Oh, said he, God is everything; God is the tree, God is an animal and God is me. He could
tell without me speaking, that, regardless of the language, I wasn't in agreement. Gently
I asked him if he prayed. He assured me that he did. I asked then if he prayed to himself or
to the trees. 

This is really a direction in which many people who live here in the United States are dangerously heading. The direction of pluralism, new-age religious acceptance even a
form of Hinduism. God is seen as His creation. Anything can be God. Anyone can be God.
No, God is God.

God, the creator of all things, is separate from His creation, outside of His creation, outside
of the space-time continuum of people. He cannot be anything but what He is and has been
since before creation, everlasting to everlasting. God is not in need of His creation; He does
not derive sustenance from what He has created; He sustains it. He controls it. He is
above yet directly involved with what He has created, but He is not the created for
He was not created.

Alistair Begg lists five things that God is:  Creator, Sustainer, Ruler of all Governments
in His creation, Father and Judge. He sustains the world and all that is in it. But He
is not of it. He is Holy and apart. He is the lion. He is also the lamb. He is the redeemer
who was willing to walk inside that which He had created to allow for the redemption
of all who are guilty of sin.

It is true that we can see God within His creation, in fact the Bible suggests it. But we
must remember that He is not His creation. He gave to all artists the gift of creativity.
What they create is not equal to who they are. What God created in His grace and
in His power is not God. God is God!

Praise Him!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Don't forget to not be afraid!

New International Version
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.  Isaiah 41: 10

Do this in remembrance of me.” New American Standard Bible and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, "This is My body, which is for you; do this in ...  1 Corinthians 11: 24

It makes perfect sense that the one who created us would know us thoroughly. In reading
through the Bible, the story of Jesus Christ, one often runs across there two exhortations:
Fear Not and Remember Me. 

I think it's safe to say that all human beings deal with fear throughout life. Some of the
fears of childhood, when looking back, seem foolish. I was fearful of bridges. Whenever
we, as a family, would travel in the car, I would hold my breath from the beginning of
the bridge until the end. This became a bit of a problem on long spans!!! I was afraid
of the dark, bees, piano recitals... the list is relatively long. As an adult the fears tended
to change but there were still fears. Despite 34 years of teaching, I was always nervous
during parent open houses. I could handle 120 8th graders easily, but give me a room
full of parents....that's fear!

I suppose it won't come as a surprise that death frightens me. Woody Allen suggests
that he isn't afraid of dieing, he just doesn't want to be there. Well, now that I know Jesus
Christ I am well aware that I will face only one death and it will be with Him at my side.

Angels, prophets speaking with the voice of God and Jesus, who was God, all frequently
admonish us to not be afraid.  Of course, Jesus admits that we should fear the Evil
One who can kill the spirit as well as the flesh.

At the very apex of His ministry, in an upper room, Christ Jesus shares in a post-supper
passing of the bread and the wine. A large part of the ceremony He was setting into
motion was about not forgetting Him, His words, His commission and His ministry.
How, you might ask, could the disciples possibly forget? Well, I am constantly aware that
it is easy for me, in the common tasks of the day, to not be conscious of the love and grace
of the gospel, of what the cross represents and and the ever-present Holy Spirit living within me.  

Yes, he knew us quite well! He knows us, today and we would be smart to remember Him and to minimize our fears. After all, He is the shepherd and we are His beloved sheep.

Praise God!