Tuesday, September 25, 2012

God's Power

"For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek."
Romans 1:16
God's power is in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.  It is the power of God to bring salvation to those who believe. The main call that each and every one of us have when we receive Jesus as our Lord and Savior is to go.  We are to go out and make disciples of the nations and to preach and to share everywhere what Jesus did for us.  Romans 10:14-15 tells us "How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in the one whom they have not heard?  And how can they preach unless they are sent?  As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!"
We have good news for those around us.  Those at our work, in our home and in our neighborhood.  We have the power of God in our lives.  The power for those in sin to be forgiven.  The power to free us from guilt and condemnation.  The power to free us from sin and bondage.  The power to change our lives.  The power to love unconditionally.  Jesus paid the ultimate price and gave us the power to share with others this good news.  Jesus, the son of God died for our sins.  Sin separated us from God the Father and he died so that we can come into relationship with God.  He also ascended so that we could receive the promised gift of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit is the one who will be with us bearing witness that we are children of God.  It is the promise and seal of our eternal redemption. 
When you share what Jesus has done, there is power to bring salvation into a person's life and to save them from eternal damnation and hell.  It is offering them a promise of life and life abundantly through Jesus Christ. 
God desires that all men and women be saved and come to the full knowledge of him.  It is his goodness that leads us to repentance.  He desired and put a plan in place that would allow for us to be made righteous and holy before him.  It is not based upon our performance but based upon his son's performance.  We cannot earn this, but it is by his grace that we are saved.  It takes off all the pressure to perform and be perfect.  He is the one who will make us perfect in him.  It is him who will make us righteous.  It is because of him we will find the inner peace and joy. 
Look around you and may God give you the opportunity to share the good news, the power of God for salvation!

Prayer of Agreement

"Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.  For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."
                                                                 Matthew 18:19-20

There is power when two of us agree on earth and ask for anything it will be done for you.  Doesn't it sound so simple.  It is powerful when in our hearts we truly believe and ask in agreement.  When we are not in agreement, the prayers will not avail much.  Jesus understood the importance of being in a spirit of unity and oneness.  He was in complete harmony with the will of the Father.  He knew that when he prayed his prayers would be answered.  He also desired that we would come to that complete place of unity as well. 

Satan knows that there is power in the prayer of unity.  As a married couple, if you understand how powerful the prayer of agreement is then you would be able to move mountains into the sea.  However, sometimes arriving to that destiny does not happen easy.  The enemy uses strategies to keep us from walking in the fullness of what we could do by interfering with our marriage with evil thoughts and disagreements.  When we understand this completely then we will see results. 

Moses even used the prayer of agreement with Pharoah in the book of Exodus.  Remember when the plague of frogs took over the Egypt and Pharoah called him to get rid of the frogs?  Moses asked him, when do you want the frogs removed and Pharoah said tomorrow.  Well, they were gone the next day.  Funny thing is that Pharoah decided to wait another night to rid of the frogs.  Crazy, huh? 

Well sometimes it takes us time to evaluate the truth in our own hearts.  The heart is deceitful above all things.  Sometimes we come for prayer, but are not in agreement.  Without agreement there is no answer to your prayer.  When you come to that place and understand that it is possible and can happen, then you will see the power of God moving on your behalf.  One puts a thousand to flight and two puts ten thousand to flight.

May the Lord bring you into complete agreement with those you are praying with and in your marriages and family.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Trials and Tribulations

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble but take heart! I have overcome the world."    John 16:33

Jesus was speaking to his disciples.  He knew of that when his time came to die for our sins that his disciples would be scattered and that they would leave him all alone.  But God would not leave him alone.  He knew that they would mourn and question if they were following the way, the truth and the life.  They would witness a horrific death and their savior whom they had seen perform mighty miracles killed innocently.  They would be questioning what was the purpose over the last three years and a half years.  The loss of such a great friend and such a great prophet would be too much too bear.  On top of it, Peter would fail him by denying him three times before the cruxifiction.  The guilt that Peter felt when he did it. The disciples were scattered and hid to protect their life from the religious leaders who put Jesus to death.  It was heart wrenching to see such a terrible thing happen.

Jesus knew that they would have to endure such a great loss for the glory he was to bring to the whole earth.  The gift of eternal life through what he would do.  Many today are enduring hardships, trials and tribulations.  Some are being persecuted for what they believe.  Across the world there are still many who are laying down their lives for an eternal redemption.  We who here in America still have some freedom left.  We can talk about Jesus and his goodness.  We can talk about how he died for our sins.  We can talk about repentance and the good news of the gospel opening without being put to death.  Some are going through deaths of loved ones, sickness and disease, hardship and pain.  Even I myself am enduring times that I prefer not to endure.  But there is a greater glory at the end of this road.  Yes, we will have trials and tribulations, but we need to be of good cheer....Jesus overcame the world.  We have not had to endure death on the cross and separation from God as he had too.  What we have is greater.  He said that when we receive him as our Lord and Savior, we will receive the comforter, the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit is God with us.  He will be there to comfort us during our trials and tribuations.  He is there when we cry or when we laugh.  He is there when we are disappointed and discouraged.  He is there when we are broken hearted.  He is there to comfort us and heal us.  He is there to help us through our times of trouble.  He is there to bring us newness of life and his eternal peace.  So today may the Lord bless you with his peace and may you see the overcoming power that Jesus so gave us!


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Great Faith

Matthew 8:5-13 - The Faith of the Centurion

5 When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. 6 “Lord,” he said, “my servant lies at home paralyzed, suffering terribly.”7 Jesus said to him, “Shall I come and heal him?”
8 The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. 11 I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. 12 But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that moment.

In Matthew 8:5-13 we see an encounter with Jesus where real faith is demonstrated.  It was the faith of the centurion that made Jesus take notice.  The centurion not only believed that Jesus would heal his servant, but that Jesus could do it without having to come to his home.  He knew that Jesus was a man in authority.  Jesus said that no where has he seen one with such great faith.  He knew this man understood submission to authority, acting in authority and faith to believe that once the word was sent it would be carried out.  We go on to read that within that hour his servant was healed. 

The centurion was a man who knew that once an order was given by him or to him, that it was required for the order given to be followed and completed.  He was not only one subject to authority, but also one who acted in authority.  If you didn't follow through on the task given to you, it could cost you your life or the lives of others.  So he submitted himself to those above him and to those around him.  He knew that if he failed to do what was asked or required it meant harm to him troop. 

We too are in a battle.  The battle ground is one that Jesus has already beat.  He has defeated the enemy.  However, in the midst of a battle if we do not follow the orders, we can cause ourself to get hurt or cause others to get hurt.  He has given us his word in the authority given to him to instruct us of what we need to do while we are here on earth.  He has also given us his word that he will do it if we have faith to believe what he has said. 

The centurion did not know Jesus other than what he had heard about him.  He knew that when he spoke the word, he healed people.  Understanding what he knows about authority and the giving of the word and how it is followed through, he had no hesitation in knowing Jesus's words and the authority given to him would heal his servant. 

How powerful a statement.  So today as you read the word, let this word resonate as truth.  Let the faith arise in you to know that Jesus can heal you and deliver you from your circumstances.  We are told that if we ask and have the faith of a mustard seed, we can say to the mountain be thou removed and cast into the sea.  If we ask believing by faith, it will be done unto you.  So today, believe you will receive.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Seek First His Kingdom and His Righteousness

"But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well."  Matthew 6:33

Matthew 6:25 - 34 tells us not to worry.  Jesus goes on to say that we do not need to worry about our life, what we will eat or drink or what we will wear.  He goes on to tell us is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes.  He shares with us how God takes care of the birds of the air who do not sow or reap.  He reminds us that we are more valuable than the birds of the air.  He also tells us our worrying shows us how little our faith is. 

When trials come, it comes to test your heart.  It is to show you what you believe in.  Do you believe in what God said or do you believe it what is currently happening?  The answer your prayers sometimes come out differently than expected.  Jesus tells us to have faith and that if we believe in him, he will help us through the problem and we will gain more of him and his glory. 

Matthew 7:7-8 tells us "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who ask receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks the door will be opened."  We are told to believe that when we ask, we will receive His promises. 

How is faith developed?  Faith is developed by hearing and hearing the word of God.  Once you receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior, our faith is developed when we read the word of God and fellowship with other believers in Christ.  When we hear the word, it encourages us, blesses us, divides our soulish behaviors from our spiritual life, it washes and cleanses us, it gives life to our mortal bodies and it is health to our whole flesh.  God is the embodiment of the word and it is what gives us our foundation in truth.  It is used for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.  It will show areas of our life that need to be changed.  It also shows us God's goodness as well by providing us with a way to make yourself right with God and to have fellowship with Him.

The road is narrow to life.  When you seek His Kingdom first and His righteousness, you will find that He will guide you and help you through this life and the trials that come.  Jesus is the one who we are to look to.  He is our righteousness.  He is the one who paid the price for us to seek His Kingdom. He paved the way to give us life through the Holy Spirit.  He had to leave so that we may receive this promise that He is God with us.  Hebrews 12:1-3 says "let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles us, and let us run with perserverance the race marked out for us.  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.  Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you do not grow weary and lose heart."  As we look to Jesus, He will finish the good work he started in us. 

Today ask God to help you to surrender those problems, that weight that keeps you from fulfilling God's plan and for Him to help you to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness.