In Christ we have everything we need. Now, that statement is so powerful, IF you understand who Jesus is and what He came to do.
Have you ever heard the term, maybe from your dad, “My house; My rules”?
When I first heard this, I was a teenager living with my Grandparents. I wanted to be independent. I was trying to find my own way; trying to be my own man. But Grandpa made sure that I understood that if I was living with him, I would be living by his rules.
Tuesday night I talked to the men about 1 Timothy 6:11-12 which says “But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”
Today our season of corporate prayer and fasting comes to an end. My prayer is that you and your family have experienced God in a very real and meaningful way. God’s desire is continual fellowship with us. This time of purifying, both physically and spiritually, has helped position us for life-giving fellowship with our Father.
One day, my grandson was standing in the living room when he put his blanket over his head and took off running. Of course, you can probably imagine it didn’t end well! He ran straight into a piece of furniture and he cried a good cry. We were sympathetic, but giggling at the same time, because he was so naïve to think that would be a good idea!
Have you ever been told to live outside of the box? Usually the person saying this is trying to encourage us to live free, without limitations. Such limitations are often self-imposed restrictions, or the reflection of limitations with which others have tried to restrain us. It’s time to break out of comfort zones and fear, and live out the dreams and visions God had given us.
Fasting opens the door to the miraculous. In Acts 27, the Apostle Luke is telling of the circumstances regarding Paul’s shipwreck on Malta. Paul warned the men sailing the ship that danger lay ahead, but the men ignored Paul’s warning. After all, Paul was merely a prisoner and they were expert sailors.
Recently I was visiting with family members whose son was recently in a terrible automobile accident. Their son is currently in a rehabilitation facility and we asked about his progress. The young man currently has no feeling in his legs, but he is standing in faith that he will walk again. One day physical therapists came to show him the newest, most modern wheelchairs. After the visit, the therapists left and the young man’s dad turned to him and said, “You know, those are really cool. But you’re not going to need one!”
When I got married to my high school sweetheart, I couldn’t wait to literally carry her over the threshold of our home. Leading up to our wedding, I dreamed about the joy of that moment when I could hold her close and take the first step into our new life together. Funny thing, that first step was connected to another step, and another step. If I had taken one step and dropped her, it would have been a terrible start to the rest of our lives!
One of the most fun things I have done as a Pastor is accompany our youth group to summer camp at Texas Bible Institute. A portion of the activities they offer is a series of contests between the different youth groups to inspire some healthy competition. A favorite of Lifeline Youth is the tug-of-war contest.
We live in a culture that is highly demanding of our time, attention and energy. Your job, your immediate and extended family, friends, church, extracurricular activities for your children or yourself, serving your community; all are areas that we may choose to engage to enhance our lives or the lives around us.
When we fast, we choose to refocus our time, attention and energy on God.
Fear is the greatest enemy of faith. Fear subverts faith; it works to undermine our ability to trust God and believe that He is who He says He is, and will do what He says He will do.
I remember one time after my parents divorced, my mom, my sister and I were living in a little apartment in government housing. There had been a rash of burglaries in the area, and several of our neighbors were so afraid, they chose to stay with other family members rather than stay in their own apartment. I felt like we were the only people left in that whole complex!
There are days when I have felt down right bullied by the enemy! It seemed like every time I turned the corner there he was trying to intimidate, and humiliate me. I can’t stand a bully!
Bullies are all about hurting people, whether that means physically causing pain or creating harmful stories so that everyone will see us as being weak. Sometimes they achieve their goal and not only do others see us as weak, but we see ourselves the same way!