Saturday, June 12, 2010

A Heart For Sinners

...I’ve come to call sinners, not people who think they don’t have any flaws.

Your Loving Father has never wanted to condemn. When people rebel, rather than looking forward to punishing them for their sin, He grieves over the fact that they have been rebellious. He yearns to bring restoration. Jesus Christ, in His words (above), teaches us and shows that God seriously cares about reaching and redeeming sinners. Jesus Christ came to the lost, the broken and the least, to save, mend, and make first. Since such matters to God, as His children, it is our prayer that our hearts will be aligned with His, that we would have compassion for sinners, and desire to reach out to them rather mock them in their situation.
In your walk with God, you may have fallen due to temptations. You may have fallen into sin, consciously or unconsciously. Your Loving Father does not love you less. He yearns for your restoration and His arms are always open wide to receive you when you come to Him in repentance.

Prayer: My Loving Father, thank you for Your awesome love towards sinners and those who are not perfect. Thank You for reminding me that I am still worthy of Your love if I fall into temptation. Father I pray that You give me a contrite heart and renew my spirit to be aligned with Yours. I am convicted today of your gracious love and concern for those who are caught in sin. I pray that You give me a heart of concern for those around me who are lost.  Please use me as an instrument to give them hope and bring them to You. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Telling others the good news

Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven, but whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven.

A young slave girl witnessed of the power of God to her master and linked him to his miracle, (2 Kings 5:2-4). We need not underestimate the power of sharing our witness of God's goodness. The girl shared her witness by way of small conversation which went a long way in bringing healing to her master.

God does signature things in our lives that leave us knowing that only God could have done this. Not everyone has the opportunity or boldness to shout it out loud from the roof top, but we all have the opportunity to share it in our conversations with others. We may know what we should speak of, but allow ourselves to rationalize it out of our conversation for fear of rejection or other reasons. Let us embrace the word of God and be empowered to speak of God's goodness whenever the Holy Spirit prompts us. We may never know the extent of deliverance that comes to our hearers and to those who are hearers will eventually tell.

By declaring God's goodness in your life or His saving grace, you are sowing on Earth. Each time we testify of Christ to someone, we sow a seed. Jesus promises to acknowledge us before the Father in heaven if we acknowledge him before men. He will take our cares and concerns to God as we speak well of him to other people.

Prayer: Dear Lord, please give me the boldness to speak of your goodness to every needy and hurting heart. Help me to to sow seeds in peoples lives without fear. Please water the seeds I sow dear Lord, for them to germinate into great deliverance and achievement. King Jesus, speak of me before your father as I confess you before men, I pray. Amen.

One-Year Daily Bible Reading Plan - June 11 2010 - Esther 1 - 5 (OT), 1 Corinthians 16 (NT)

Pray for someone today: Let us pray for people who are in lack, for Christians who look up to God for sustenance but are faced with challenges of provision. Pray for people who have put in their best effort to earn a better means of livelihood but still find themselves struggling with lack. Pray that God will remember these ones and be their great provider in Jesus Name. Amen.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rest For Your Soul

"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest."

Amidst the beauty of each day, there could be things that leave us weary. Such could be our thoughts and meditations. It could be the activities we are involved with. It could be a situation that has left us running from pillar to post for answers and solutions. It could be weariness from religion - doing things to be called a Christian without knowing why or experiencing God personally. It could even be our feelings of failure when we fall make mistakes in our walk with God.

Do you find yourself tired because you put in so much effort without results? Or are you weary from worrying and being anxious about tomorrow? Are you burned out on religion? Today, Jesus Christ invites you to get away from those things that burden your heart, that you may take a real rest with Him. The rest He is referring to is rest for your soul.

Rest for the soul is the most desirable rest. You can get rest for your soul when you spend time in His presence worshipping Him and loving on Him. A sure way to find rest for your soul is to sit at Christ’s feet and hear His word. The truths and understanding from His words give you peace and assurance. Understanding the love of God will give you abundant satisfaction. 

Prayer: My Loving Father, You satisfy our needs and give strength to the weary. I cast my cares upon You and take Your yoke that is easy and gentle. I lay down my anxieties and worries to rest in Your love. I take my rest in you, Lord Jesus. May I experience You for myself. Amen.

Suggested Worship Song: Heart of Worship

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The disposition of God's children

Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.

There are certain jobs that are inherently risky. In carrying out the demands of such jobs, a lot is put into consideration otherwise the outcome could be fatal or crippling. Some examples are fire-fighters, soldiers, stuntmen, race car drivers and so on. Risky as they are, lots of people enroll and execute them successfully, but with very high standards of operation and precaution.

When Jesus sent his disciples to preach the gospel, he alerted them of the high-risk nature of their calling. As children of God chosen to represent the Most High, we are as sheep amongst wolves. This two kinds of animals in reality do not co-habit peacefully. The wolves will constantly seek to devour the sheep. The MSG translation relates the text as, 'Stay alert. This is hazardous work I'm assigning you. You're going to be like sheep running through a wolf pack, so don't call attention to yourselves. Be as cunning as a snake, inoffensive as a dove'.

Thankfully, our Lord Jesus has not left us to fate but teaches us what precautions we should follow to stay out of trouble of compromising our faith, and stay alive in God. How can we be wise as serpents and harmless as doves? A serpent would look for smart means to stay out of danger and away from risk. They are pros at escaping. A dove would not intentional do harm to anyone. It has a calm and quiet disposition always.

As children of our loving father, we are called to be harmless in effect or intention, to give no provocation but peace always. At the same time, we are advised not to be gullible for our own spiritual safety but to perceive danger, avoid and escape it at all cost. Prov. 27:12, 'The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it'.

Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for reminding me of my disposition as your child. Let your word manifest in my daily affairs. Preserve me so I am not engulfed in worldliness and lose my Christian faith. Please give me the spirit of prudence and the ability to discern right from wrong. I pray to bear only fruits that glorify you in Jesus name.

One-Year Daily Bible Reading Plan - June 9 2010 - Nehemiah 6-9 (OT), 1 Corinthians 14 (NT).

Pray for someone today - Pray for less privileged children, who find themselves in so much hardship in life for no fault of theirs. That the Lord will help them encounter Jesus Christ and find peace and help as they grow. Pray that their purpose in life will be fulfilled wherever they have found themselves today, by Gods grace.

God's love and mine...

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Assurance Of Good Things From Your Father

If you then, imperfect as you are, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in Heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

These words of Jesus were spoken as He continued the sermon on the mount [Matthew 5-7]. Jesus Christ, knowing the heart of God, encourages us to pray to God for what we need. He knows how much God gives good things freely to His children.

We learn from these words that we should come to God, as children to a Father in heaven, with reverence and confidence, knowing our place as His children. We must come to Him for good things, for He gives good things to them that ask Him. He knows what is good for us, and it is an act of faith and trust when we leave it to Him to gives us what is best for us. 

We also learn from these words that our prayers will be answered. The world often gives stones for bread, and serpents for fish, but God never does such. When we ask of Him, we can be assured that we shall be heard and answered. Should we ask for something that could harm us, He will know and He will not give it to us. Sometimes, a delay in answer to a prayer is simply God preparing to give us more than what we asked for.

The bowels of fathers yearn even towards undutiful children or towards prodigals. In a much deeper and greater way, God yearns for you. He is infinitely wise, full of mercy and loving-kindness, rich and more ready to give to you than your earthly father, for He is the Father of your spirit, an ever-loving, ever-living Father. 

Prayer: My Loving Father, if ever I was in a place of doubt or unbelief as to Your plans for me, today I am rest assured that You answer my prayers according to Your will and give me what is best for me. No good thing will You withhold for me. Thank You, merciful Father, that even with my imperfections, You love me and yearn for me. Give me the grace to continually trust You and rest as I wait for the physical manifestation of my petitions. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Overcoming temptation

Jesus answered, "It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God' "

Temptation is described as something that seduces or has the quality to seduce. It is the act of influencing by exciting hope or desire, to have or do something that you know you should avoid. Temptation can be subtle, fierce or irresistible, often targeted at an area of weakness. It usually appears as the absolute best position to take in a given situation, except that a sixth sense and a nagging conscience tells us it's wrong.

Jesus' first temptation in the wilderness was related to hunger, right after a prolonged fasting and prayer session. It would have been the logical thing to do but for the source of advice and the hidden intentions behind the advice. Jesus carefully resisted and overcame his temptations by words of God written in scripture. His knowledge of the Christian's reference standard saved him from wrong.

Our knowledge of God's word is the first line of defense we have against the myriads of temptations facing us daily. The Holy Spirit searches our sub conscious database and brings to our remembrance the word for the moment, by which we can overcome. As we study and meditate on the word of God, it is stored in us for the day of need. Little wonder lessons of God's word learnt from way back still remain relevant in leading us out of trouble today. May the word of God continually be our delight in Jesus name.

Prayer: Dear Lord, please grant me the grace to know your will and your ways that I may walk in light. Holy Spirit of God I give you room in my life to remind me of your counsel and to obey you. I let go of my sinful pleasures, I invite you to take over. Let my testimony be like that of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen.

One-Year Daily Bible Reading Plan - June 7 2010 - Ezra 6-10 (OT), 1 Corinthians 12 (NT).

Pray for someone today - Pray for Christian marriages, that the Holy Spirit will be a part of the home and guide the family by the word God. Pray for these families to overcome temptations that seek to tear the home apart. Pray that the fruits of Christian families will shine as light in the world today.

God's love and mine...

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Light For The World

You are light for the world...

If you are away from the city, the light from the stars appear more conspicuous and a full moon is bright enough to find your way around in the night. In our world today, we have moved from darkness into light and we are to reflect the light we have found in Jesus. Light shines on dark things and exposes what is there. When Jesus spoke about His followers being the light for the world, His point was that we are not just to shine our lights in our own little circle of influence, but we are to shine them so that every place of darkness is either brought to the light or is exposed for what it is.

You can bring light when you help people see an issue from a biblical (God) point of view. You can be light when you are the first person in your family to surrender your life to Christ and as a result, you bring God into the home. You are light for the world.

Most times we hide our light when we stay silent in the face of discussion that is contrary to what we know and believe from the word of God. We hide our light when we conform with behaviours that are not in line with Jesus' teaching. We hide our light when we do not care for the needs of others, and walk by on the other side: since we have missed an opportunity to let the light of Jesus' compassion shine out in acts of kindness. It is Your Loving Father's desire that your light will shine to others. If we let the light of the Holy Spirit at work in us shine through, then we bring glory to God, and there can be no greater joy than being able to give glory to the Father as we go through our daily lives.

Prayer: My Loving Father, help me not to be discouraged by any situation that seems to tell me I am not light for the world. Help me to be a light to those near and far. Reveal to me if there is any area of my life where I have been hiding Your light in me. Lead me into ways of service that will bless people in the name of Jesus.  (If you know any person you want to reach out to or you know that needs to become a Christian, please pray for the person today). Help me to be Your light of joy and salvation that will help them come to know you as their Heavenly Father. In Jesus Name, Amen.