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We are to love God above everything. It is my number one way of living and I hope it is also yours. Believe, believe, believe! Being with God is a gift. He brought me to TN near Chattanooga! So glad. #godisalwaysgood #godislife #jesusloveus #godisamazinglyawesome #praisehimalways #praisegod🙏 #clevelandtn #chattanoogatn #nooga
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Only God knows your future. You might as well be happy in the process. #polymathproftips 👍😀 #leeuniversity Let God work in your life at His own time. ⏱⌛️ #lifecoaching #adviceoftheday Things happen for a reason and they often happen to make you stronger. Embrace the process! You can do it. #motivationalspeaker #inspirationalquote 👊💪
Have you thought about becoming a soldier of Jesus Christ? The methods in which you can serve the Lord are more flexible than you may think. In this blog post, we are going to briefly talk about the former with a touch of practicality.
In Matthew 28:16-20, we learned, “Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Notice that we aren’t called to be a soldier for Christ in any particular way. The methods by which we can serve God is open ended! They are flexible! What a blessing I might add. What am I saying? Well, what I am saying is that you (and me) can certainly use the internet as a way to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with others. Technically, we can share the gospel of God in three ways.
- Face-to-face interpersonally
- In small-group conversations in person
- On-line discussions and blogs.
Isn’t that cool? What are your thoughts about all of that? We all need to spread the gospel! Let’s get the conversation going. Finding ways to share the gospel is what we are called to do. God bless!
Give praise to the Lord, proclaim His name; make known among the nations what He has done” (Psalm 105:1).
Let me ask you this. What is 750,000 miles long, reaches around the world thirty times, and grows twenty times longer each day? Answer: The number of people who have never heard the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is a LOT!
The bible is an unique book of revelation that unveils God’s plan for humanity as well as a salvation plan. Evangelism might be an activity that is carried out by humans but is definitely inspired and guided by God. The gospel is good news ladies and gents and must be shared to the nations.
For years folks have been asking how can we, in 2017, evangelize unbelievers in such a complex and technological world. The answer is surprisingly simple! It starts with giving a testimony. By the way, how did you find God? Do you remember the exactly moment when you found the love of God in you? Well, it starts there.
At Westmore Church of God, we spoke in great detail about this plan of evangelism in last week’s Wednesday class. Let me share with you a model of evangelism that I know will help you to actively engage in the great commission. It goes a little but like this and starts with a testimony.
- Use your testimony
- Plan your testimony
- Point people to Jesus
- Clearly explain the gospel message
- Share several key scripture verses
- Explain how you actually receive Christ
Here is my advice: Spend some time alone, have conversation with God and put together (if you haven’t done so) a sketch about how you found God. After that, look at the model above and start evangelizing! Why not? We are called by God to do so. As the great 92 year old missionary educator James Beaty once said, “It pay off to obey God.”
The Lord has given you a gift for a very good reason — to glorify Him with it. We all are good in something and brothers and sisters… we need to make sure that we stick with the talent (or talents) that God has given us. The actual gifts given by God to us are many. So the question is… What is your gift? Seek to find what you are good at and use it! Keep in mind though that the gift that you have received came from the creator of the universe.
“My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in” (Proverbs 3:11-12).
Most people are uncomfortable with receiving a dose of discipline. Chances are high that you will be disciplined by someone sometime in your lifetime, both privately and publicly. It is the way that God, through the holy spirit, acts in this world to teach you and show God’s love to you. God develops those He loves. Remember: God Disciplines You Because He Loves You.
You are to welcome discipline and try to better understand what God has planned for your life. In this world, the most impactful learnings you can have come from predictable rebukes given by others yet orchestrated by the Lord. With reason, be open to this unpredictable criticism — as long as the criticism is constructive and well intended. The spirit will tell you if the feedback is well intended or if it is malicious. My recommendation? Pray about it every time you are rebuked. It is amazing what God does to you and the person who disciplined you after you pray. Our God is a fair God.
God has cautioned us against the dangers of astrology in Deuteronomy verses 4:19, 18:9-12, and Daniel 2:2-17. Seeking guidance from a star isn’t exactly what a Christian is supposed to do. Astrology is idolatry plain and simple and is highly condemned by God. Back in the old testament, the prophet Isaiah declared that he who who practices this craft won’t be able to save themselves or anybody else. God also warns us all about such practices in 1 corinthians 6:-9-10 declaring that anyone who engages in astrology won’t inherited the kingdom of God. We are to flee from such practices, period. We need to seek guidance from God and celebrate His name.
“Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14); “Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness” (James 3:18).
We are to promote peace and live a peaceful life. We are to live a life full of enjoyment, along with great and memorable moments. Brothers and sisters, this is our call. Please choose peace over conflict in this short journey that we call life. The Lord is in control. Never forget that. Trust.
“Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them” (James 4:13-17).
The reality is that we can’t even start to guess how much hair we have on our heads. Trying to plan for what will happen to you or your business two years from today is literally madness. Without being God’s will, I emphasize, predictions are merely self-centered mad guesses. Only by acknowledging that the Lord is in control that we start our journey towards true wisdom. The former opens the door for potentially deeper questions of value such as “why do we go to war?” or “Why do brothers and sisters complain against one another?” God knows it all. We don’t.
We are to “submit to God and resit the devil” (James 4:7). Don’t forget to “humble yourselves before the Lord and He will exalt you” (James 4:10). In everything ask, “If it is the Lord’s will” and life will then be what it was intended to be from the beginning. A perfect relationship between man and God. God sets the tone, we follow. There is no technology that will ever change that.
Tesla cars maybe represent what is the most attractive in auto innovations in the automobile industry. Model X’s interior is without question a piece of art along with its futuristic door technology. However, Model X starting price is 69 thousand dollars.
I am not against anyone making millions of dollars each year, as long as exploitation isn’t a part of the person’s philosophy of wealth. I don’t believe in “starving” God with what is His at the expense of luxury, though. God must always comes first. It is important to give, especially to what is of God.
If giving to the Lord means that we don’t own a Tesla or any other luxury car, then so be it. I am okay with it and you should be okay with it, as well. Christians must live for God not man. Any materialistic possession should never come ahead of God.
Luxury cars, big houses, expensive vacations, eating in fancy restaurants are all meaningless and short lived. Our trust and faith must be in the Lord. Giving is good…
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23); “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned” (Romans 5:12).
Smile! Jesus is Lord and that’s our hope for a better future. Are you ready for a dose of reality? We all fall short of doing good in this world. Brothers and sisters, we all have sinned and without question fall short of God’s ideal. We are imperfect and we must accept this fact. No technology will change the former, that’s for sure. The good news folks is that we have the Lamb who has paid a tremendous price for you and me so that we can have salvation. Celebrate! Jesus lives and so do we. Our God is an awesome God, isn’t He?
“Do not eat any meat with the blood still in it. Do not practice divination or seek omens” (Leviticus 19:26); “There shall not be found among you anyone who burns his son or his daughter as an offering, anyone who practices divination or tells fortunes or interprets omens, or a sorcerer or a charmer or a medium or a necromancer or one who inquires of the dead, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord. And because of these abominations the Lord your God is driving them out before you. You shall be blameless before the Lord your God” (Deuteronomy 18:10-13).
The Lord forbids all forms of occult arts. Flee from the occult and don’t look back. If you own tarot cards, throw them away. Say NO to astrology and the Quija board. These former things are without question enemy’s tools of perversion. The knowledge of the paranormal is dangerous and no Christian should come even close to it. The appropriate response for those practicing the art of spiritism, eastern philosophy, alchemy or magic is to first and foremost get rid of occult paraphernalia followed by joining a bible believing Christian church. Again — Say NO to these things. It is the right thing to do.
Reminder: Only God deserves reverence. No other entity either in form or thought should be a part of your life. We are the army of God! God be glorified in heaven, always.
“Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:16-20).
We need to spread the word of God to all the nations including here in the United States. It is the gospel — it is good news! A large number of American Christians don’t seem to be putting into practice God’s instruction to engage in the great commission. Why? Perhaps because too many of us only practice cultural Christianity. We need to be Christians 24/7 not just on Sundays. We must share the word of God with others every week at work, during conversations in the mall, sometimes even in elevator conversations.
We are called to spread God’s love with others. Let’s not forget that in many parts of the world, Christians are being persecuted for spreading the gospel. In fact, many go to Jail in order to spread Christ’s word. The minimum that we should do is to do our part and engage in the great commission.
So, next time that you visit a coffee shop… take the initiative and speak with others about God’s love. This is out call.
Flee from the Yogi of the east and focus your attention on the Lord. Yogi (also referred as gurus in India) recommend that people look within themselves in order to receive a divine spark and guide themselves in this world. Be very careful with such practices as only God can guide us with what is right. Be also very cautious about yoga, meditation, and the chanting of mantras. All these practices encourage folks to seek an inward light as a means for solving problems and living the good life.
Christ has warned us about such practices as seeking “inward lights” can de facto be an encounter with darkness. Let’s not forget that the adversary (satan) appears as an “angel of light” (2 Colossians 11:14). We, the brethren, experience light when we “preach the gospel” (2 Colossians 4:4). Flee from Yogi (gurus) and don’t fall into the temptation of accepting their practices and philosophies. Yogi are tools of the enemy. Always choose God, instead.
“This disaster happened because the people of Israel sinned against the Lord their God who had brought them out of the land of Egypt from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt and because they had worshipped other Gods” (2 Kings 17:7).
Brothers and sisters, we worship a jealous God. The Lord doesn’t want us to glorify anything other than Him and Him alone. Wealth, cars, family members, symbols, statues… are not to be worshipped. Only our God deserved the former. We should never forget that God is all powerful and in control of everything under the sun and in heaven. We must flee from idolatry and focus our eyes on the Lord and do what we can to be more like Him. We must resist sinning against the only God of the universe. If you feel tempted, pray!!! God will help you. He will help me, my family and yours.
One thing is for sure. We can’t do it alone. We need Jesus Christ! It is our only chance… The penalty for disobedience and lack of repentance is too much for us to bear. It ain’t worth questioning God’s commands, thats for sure.
“The righteous, the wise, and their works are in God’s hands. People don’t know whether to expect love or hate. Everything lies ahead of them; everything is the same for everyone” (Ecclesiastes 9:1); “…for the one who takes the oath and for the one who fears an oath” (Ecclesiastes 9:2).
Enjoy your life and do wonderful things in this world even though you (and I) will die one day. Just remember that “the heart of the people is filled with the desire to commit crime” (Ecclesiastes 8:1). Maneuver yourself away from them and keep the faith in Jesus Christ. Be good and do good in God’s eyes because it is good. Smile, give and receive hugs, laugh, eat and enjoy your family and friends — Work hard! As it is written, “There is nothing better for man than to eat, drink, and enjoy his work” (Ecclesiastes 2:24). This life is temporary. Our biggest reward is in heaven. Carpe Diem — Live your lives extraordinary.
Never forget that, brothers and sisters. God is in control.
“When you make a vow to God, don’t delay fulfilling it, because He doesn’t delight in fools Fulfill what you vow. Better that you do not vow than that you vow and not fulfill it” (Ecclesiastics 5:4).
We need to be very careful with making a vow to God. Scripture is pretty clear about it. As children of God, we need to fear God and His commands. We need to obey and keep in mind that the good God is in control. Let’s not be impulsive. Rather, we should be rational and glorify God all the days of our lives. “Do not let your mouth bring guilt on you” (Ecclesiastics 5:6). We need to think before we act. Before making an actual vow to God, pray about it.
God is good, all the time.
The problem of evil is an issue that most (if not all) Christians must struggle with especially when speaking with unbelievers. A number of well versed atheists question the validity of God by constructing arguments grounded in the problem of evil, pain, suffering… The atheist argument often goes like this, “…because if there was a God, why do we have so much evil, pain and suffering in this world.” Some of us, Evangelical Christians, accept the fact that evil does exist in this world because the good God gave us free will. I personally believe that evil and God exist in addition to the former because evil is temporary and living with God is better than living in this world. Let’s not forget that ‘evil is absence of good’ proposition comes from Saint Augustine of Hippo who used this analogy in theological doctrine conversations. Most Christians have no problem with the former statement.
During an apologetics workshop delivered by Dennis Anderson and Jesse Stone at Westmore Church of God, in Cleveland, TN, the presenters made excellent arguments for the existence of God including the following statement constructed by Jesse, “A perfectly good being might desire to accomplish greater goods for his creatures that are only possible if evil exists.” I find the former sentence to be of great value for the discussions regarding the “problem of evil” in our region. But if God is love…
Okay, now we have a logical problem again. How can a loving God allow a poor little kid to be eaten by a crocodile? Great question. I have to think a lot deeper about the former in order to fully answer the question for anyone. An Omnipotent God could have stopped that event. As Christians, we must ground our arguments based in scripture, though. The bible says, “This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength” (1 Corinthians 1:25). Maybe we are not supposed to understand, I don’t know. As of today. I justify horrific tragic events like the kid who was eaten by a crocodile as a divine mystery. My search for a better answer to this question continues and my hope is that your search continues, as well.
By faith we believe.
Teaching. We would all be dead without it. Consider this. Somewhere along the line, you were taught everything you know and do today.
“All labor and all skill work is due to a man’s jealousy of his friend. This too is futile and a pursuit of the wind” (Ecclesiastics 3:4); “Better one handful with rest, than two handfuls with effort and pursuit of the wind” (Ecclesiastics 3:6). “There is a person, without a companion, without even a son or brother, and though there is no end to all his struggles, his eyes are still not content with riches” (Ecclesiastics 3:8).
Which good do we get by working our bodies non-stop, at the expense of our health and sanity? No good I would say. Riches should not be the reason for why we live in this world. We live for God to glorify Christ to all the nations of the world not to collect gold and silver for our own purposes. remember: Everything passes and is short-lived, brothers and sisters. Life on earth and in heaven is about glorifying the Lord not a seek a blind trip towards accumulating wealth at all costs. What a miserable task chasing the pursuits of the wind is. Be different; Choose God and sanity before earthly wealth. Make your life meaningful.
God must always come first.
“You are salt for the earth. But if salt loses its taste, how will it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled on by people. “You are light for the world. A city cannot be hidden when it is located on a hill. No one lights a lamp and puts it under a basket. Instead, everyone who lights a lamp puts it on a lamp stand. Then its light shines on everyone in the house. In the same way let your light shine in front of people. Then they will see the good that you do and praise your Father in heaven.
We have the duty to make a difference in this world by how we choose to act and re-act both verbally and non-verbally in life. Even if we make a tiny difference at times — we can still be a shiny lamp in a lamp stand for someone. We can then be seen by many as examples of what God has taught us in this evil world that we live in. Making a difference in the lives of others is a critical component of being a practitioner of Christianity. Our acts have a much bigger impact than what many believe. So the question is: In which ways are you being the salt of the world? Are you that light that cannot be hidden? I hope your answer is yes to these questions. We need to do good so that many praise our father in heaven.
In the book of Ecclesiastics, we learn about the futilities (short-lived and quickly passing) of life. Some of these include possessions, the relative value of wisdom, and work. Christians are to glorify God and make the Lord the center of our lives as everything including silver and gold, singers, cattle and flocks, our diligent work and many others come and they go. Everything in meaningless. “There is nothing new over the sun” (Ecclesiastics 1:9).
“What happens to the fool also happens to me. Why then have I been overly wise?” (Ecclesiastics 2:15); “The wise man has eyes in his head, but the fool walks in darkness” (Ecclesiastics 2:14).
Brothers and sisters, “There is nothing better for a man than to eat, drink, and enjoy his work” (Ecclesiastics 2:24). Life without God is futile. Things in life come and go. Most of the work we do will be given to others. The only way to live is to love the Lord and live our lives to Him.
Thanks always be to God.
“You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up” (Deuteronomy 6:7); “Arise, walk about the land through its length and breadth; for I will give it to you” (Genesis 13:17); “Therefore, you shall keep the commandments of the LORD your God, to walk in His ways and to fear Him” (Deuteronomy 8:6).
We are to walk in the ways of the Lord, always giving thanks to His blessings and following his commands. Being with God is a gift — It is only by accepting God’s calling that we start to understand what life is really all about. Life, my friends, is about walking with God all the days of our lives, keeping His commands fearing Him. We need to instill these habits in our children so that they grow up understanding the importance of obeying God.
God bless the children and our abilities to inspire them to better understand God, in Christ Jesus.
“A fool does not delight in understanding but only wants to show off his opinions” (Proverbs 18:2). Be cautious to always want to be heard and share your opinions at the expense of others. God clearly advised us about the dangers of foolishness. There is no room for selfishness and non-sense behavior in the live of a devoted Christian leader.
Excessive speech isn’t appropriate and should be avoided whenever possible, as the bible teaches us. “The intelligent man retrains his words,” as stated in Proverbs 17:27. We have learned in Ecclesiastics 3 that there is a time for everything… “A time to be silent and a time to speak” (Ecclesiastics 3:7). Clearly, the one who is constantly speaking lacks understanding and isn’t following God’s advise found in the book of proverbs.
Brethren, let’s be different and make God the center of your lives. Keep some of your opinions to yourself. It is worth your time.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice” (Ephesians 4:31); “If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth” (1 John 1:6); “To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech” (Proverbs 8:13).
Listen carefully: There is no room for evil in the life of a Christian. God has instructed us to choose love, instead. We are to love each other as Christ loved you and me. Anger, slander, malice, arrogance… everything that is evil along with hate comes from the enemy. We need to be the salt of the world and act like it. Flee from hateful behaviors and welcome love in your life.
Remember Luke 6;31, “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” God bless.
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:31); “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Proverbs 27:4); “And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind” (Ecclesiastes 4:4).
A true christian doesn’t live a life of envy. He lives a godly life always seeking to follow God’s message of love. Flee from envy! Flee from everything that is evil and focus your efforts in better understanding who God is and what He has planned your life to be. If He talks to you, listen.
Who can be better that God? Nobody can. God is faithful and “he won’t let you bear more than what you can handle” (1 Corinthians 10:13). Remember that we are to do good not evil and show to others our fruits, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23).
Overcome evil with good, always.
“A sensible person sees danger and takes cover, but the inexperienced keep going and are punished” (Proverbs 22:3). Remember this and never forget brethren — If you see danger coming your way, the very best thing to do is to protect yourself. Don’t wait or try to remediate a dangerous situation because chances are pretty high that things won’t work out the way you planned. In my life, I have seen too much evidence that supports the former.
If you are going to protect yourself by finding a hiding place below a dining table at your house, by leaving your place of employment due to a bad situation, or simply by avoiding and isolating an evil person, it doesn’t matter as long as action is taken. Too many Christian brothers and sisters pay a high price for being naive and thinking that things will change overtime when danger heads their way. The eminent effects of danger often proves them otherwise overtime. If danger is heading your way, pray that God takes you out of that dangerous situation. “A sensible person sees danger and takes cover, but the inexperienced keep going and are punished” (Proverbs 22:3).
Ecclesiastics 3 teaches us that there is a time for everything. Sometimes, there is a time to uproot and a time for refrain… or a time from embracing or give up. If something appears to be, it often is — don’t forget that.
A Time for Everything
3 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
Remember: “There is a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing.” Don’t embrace anything that puts you in danger. If silence helps you to get away from danger, do it. Always, in prayer, we shall live. Glory be to God.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33); “It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?” (Hebrews 12:7).
Too many folks out there are operating under the wrong biblical assumption that life gets easy when we get closer to God. No it doesn’t. Life gets better because of Gods grace so that we can deal with the many temporary injustices we see in this world. I’ve seen a number of devoted Christians who are very poor, excellent brothers in Christ who are discriminated against because of how they look or talk, intelligent people without the means to get a college education without putting themselves into major debt, you name it. Who said that life is easy and fair for the brethren?
Let’s not forget the teachings of Timothy, “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Timothy 3:12), or John, “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you” (John 15;18), or Peter, “For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil” (1 Peter 3:17), or Matthew, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:10), and many more!
There is hope, which is the good news, “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10). We also learn that we should keep course as, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).
Keep the faith and love what is good despite of what you might encounter in this world. Stand firms in the faith! Never give that up. Our hope depends on it. Remember what we learned in Romans, “God will repay each person according to what they have done” (Romans 2:6).
Our only hope is the lamb. Patience in a virtue but only God saves.
“The way of the LORD is a refuge for the righteous, but it is the ruin of those who do evil” (Proverbs 10:29). Listen this proverb carefully, brethren. Flee from violence, jealousy, and any life sin that deviates you from God’s overall plan. Seek love and gentleness at all times because brothers and sisters in Christ — you will need it.
“Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy” (proverbs 31:9). “Favor is deceitful, and beauty is vain” (Proverbs 31:30). BE HUMBLE! “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (Chronicles 7:14).
Only God can give you the life you need for His own glory. Seek the ways of Jesus Christ. Your role in this life as well as mine is to glorify God not yourself. I do realize that the former is a tough concept to process and accept but it is the way… Only God has the ability to help you and I to live a life of meaning. Glory always be to God.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9). “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6). “I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me” (Psalm 120:1).
When I was a PhD student at Penn State University, I prayed to God to work in a Christian University where I would have the opportunity to teach communication classes and coach golf. The good God back then lead me and my family to Waynesburg University where I served as an Assistant Professor of Communication and Head Golf Coach. I asked, God head and the rest in history. Then I asked God, “Please God take us to a larger university so I can teach graduate students and get tenure…” Two years later, the Lord took me and my family to Indiana University of Pennsylvania where I taught graduate students and received a letter of tenure.I asked, God head and the rest in history.Then, my wife wanted to come south; I wanted to be closer to my parents; I prayed, “God, please take our family to the south where is warm and closer to Atlanta, GA.” I asked, God head and the rest in history. Now, I prayed, “I think it is time for our family to leave a research university and go back to a Christian school with a teaching focus where I could potentially study God’s word to one day, perhaps, become a pastor.” In a few days, we are heading to one of the most outstanding Christian universities in the United States! Lee University. I asked, God head and the rest in history.
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us” (1 John 5:14); “And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him” (1 John 5:15). “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” (Mark 11:24); “I call on you, my God, for you will answer me; turn your ear to me and hear my prayer.” (Psalm 17:6).
If you decide to love God, He will lead your steps towards His glorification. The ride, my friends, is a gift.
If you do love the Lord, you will be persecuted. How do I know? Because it is written…
–> “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Timothy 3:12); “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you” (John 15:18); “But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled” (1 Peter 3:14); “Do not be surprised, brothers, that the world hates you” (1 John 3:13).
Here is the good news, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22). “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” (John 10:11); “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).
I say — Pray for them anyways. Sooner or later, the good God takes you out of the lions den and will do justice to them. Sometimes, God will do the former in ways you least expect without much understanding.
If you think you are being persecuted is because you are. If something appears to be it often is… In my life, I have suffered a number of calculated attacks by a number of very evil people. Despite their ignorance and malicious schemes, I have always prayed for them anyways. My reward? The good God has done justice to them all and have blessed me with more than I deserve. I tell you this to you: God doesn’t tolerate evil doers. He does justice in His own time, don’t worry or get angry. Those who are unjust will pay for their transgressions. Don’t be envious of their evil deeds. God will put them in their places. All you have to do is pray.
“Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed” (Psalm 37:1-3); “The face of the Lord is against evildoers. To cut off the memory of them from the earth” (Psalm 34:16).
They have hated Jesus, first. They will hate you and me. It will happen. You role isn’t to hate them but to pray. It is amazing what happens in your life when you take this kind of stance. God will do miracles in your life, I say.
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11. Life is about glorifying God. One of the ways we do this is by encouraging one another and building each other up. Whenever we do the former, if you have God at the center of your life, inevitably you will give all the glory of you successes to Him anyways.
Never forget one important detail, though — “Do everything in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:14.
“Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you.” 1 Timothy 4:14.
We are all good at something. Some of us are fine engineers, others are good with numbers, some are excellent speakers or nurses and a few are indeed awesome photographers or graphic designers. One of our main goals in life is to find out what that “something” we are great at is and go deep so that we can glorify God all the days of our lives with it. Our gifts aren’t to be used for man, like many do in the music industry. Our godly gifts are to be used, without question, for God’s glory.
Who are we without God? We are nobody, I say. Spend some time this week to find your true talent so that you can glorify the almighty with distinction. Remember: You work for God not man. Once you find that special gift, dedicate your life to that talent so that the Lord is glorified continuously. If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31).