Tag Archives: Gospel

In search of good news? You just found it

1 Timothy 2:1

I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;

I have habitual sayings that I don’t realize until someone brings them to my attention. Such as “Jeepers Socks!” Meaning I’m excited. I actually stole it from a friend; I love it because it brings back an era to my mind (even before I was born) that was a much more wholesome time than we live in today.  Another quote that was recently mentioned to me was “That’s the reality of it.” I had no clue how often this phrase came into to my daily vocabulary until a friend said it back to me and brought it to my attention.

Well, some days I’d like to duck out of reality. Escape to a paradise island apart from the media, any bad news of any sort or any negative Nellie or Ned and live in total peace for the day. But “That’s not the reality of it.” Life is harsh and we must go on. But take heart dear friend there is some good news!

The State of Iowa advanced a Religious Liberty Bill

Not passed, but advanced a bill that would protect Christians and other faiths from being sued for refusing to serve or act in manner contrary to their beliefs. That’s good news! Iowa should be prayed for and God should be glorified!

Christian Athletes give God the Glory at the Winter Olympics

This article tells the story of several of the Christian Athletes who have given God the glory and spoke openly about how their faith has gotten them to where they are. That’s good news! Pray for them and share their story with young people in your life so that they may have the courage to share their Praises of God too!

Oklahoma University Re-Invites Christian Speaker

Oklahoma University had un-invited Ken Ham, Creationist Speaker, to speak at their university because of campus opposition from the LGBT community. They have since had a change of heart because of an outcry from Christians, legislators and local residents concerning the right to free speech. Glory to God, that’s good news!!!

Revival at McDonalds!

On a more personal note for myself: In 2006 I traveled to the Philippines and while there I stayed with Daniel and Jamilla Caba. Dan pastors a church in Manilla. At that time it was a roof top ministry that was set up every Sunday morning for services and taken down at service end. They’ve since graduated to a beautiful facility. Since January of this year they’ve held 3 evangelistic meetings at McDonalds. They’ve had a total of about 350 people attending those meetings and over 200 made a profession of faith! Today they continue to disciple those who were saved creating more workers for the Kingdom of God.

Please pray for our missionaries on foreign fields, and pray for our missionaries America! Can you imagine having a revival at McDonalds? Can you imagine 200 souls saved in less than 2 months? How amazing would that be?!

In this world that is so inundated with bad news and likely no shortages in the future, it’s good to know that there is still good news to be found in the Christian realm. So on days that I am inclined to crawl under a rock and ignore the world around me, I glory God that within a few minutes of searching the web under Christians news I was able to encourage my Spirit! And with one update requested I received the news from Jamilla.

So today I exhort you! Hoping that his blog encouraged you to continue on. Let no rock be crawled under, else the rocks may cry out! (Luke 19:40)

Better a Live Dog than a Dead Lion

Ecclesiastes 9:4

For to him that is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion.

The poppy eyed baby in the picture is my confidant, Senorita Izadora. She has yet to reveal any secret I’ve confided, unless she’s told the little Cuban we call Versace. He was rescue dog from Florida and I’m pretty sure he doesn’t speak English, so I’ll never know.  Izzi, and Versace as well, are small in stature, tending to have some issues etc; but one would think that they could take down a bear when someone knocks on the door or their bionic hearing picks up a noise only their ears can hear. They bark and growl and then the door opens and the intruder is greeted with Versace’s kisses and Izzi literally runs for cover, scared of her own shadow. They’re not nearly as ferocious as a lion, and they really don’t make me feel too secure, unless you count the fact that at least I can consider myself warned that there might be a danger.

We could learn from my puppy compadres. My two live dogs are of far more value than any dead lion. Yes, a lion is beautiful, until it decomposes. It’s ferocious, until it takes its last breath. Then it is of no more use than a trophy of a past hunt.

I’d love to consider myself a ferocious lion when it comes to sharing the gospel, but I’m not much better than my poppy eyed Chihuahuas. I’ve often ran to the door of opportunity and retreated as fast as I ran.

I have a great fascination with some of the ferocious men and women of the gospel: John R. Rice, Billy Sunday, Corrie Ten Boom, and others who have impacted the world for the cause of Christ. Although their fruit continues impacting the world, they themselves are of no more effect. No one can rest in the laurels of any of those people, nor can we rest in the works of our church in the past. There is a new work to be done. And for those of us who feel our attempts to share the gospel are at best feeble; our feeble attempts are far better than that of those gone on whose work is done. We must continue to keep warning the world around us that Jesus is coming back.

Izadora and Versace can’t defend me if an attacker comes into the house. But they can warn me to be ready. We can’t save the souls of anyone we meet, but we can warn them to be ready by accepting Christ as their Savior.

Let my little Izadora serve as a reminder that your Master needs you to warn His children!

I know you all love your dogs. And if you have a cute pitbull at home read this article about dog food options for pitbulls.

Dear Critic: You are not the Captain of the Gospel Ship

In 21 years of salvation, I’ve never once considered walking away from Christ and back out into the world. There’s nothing there I want. After knowing Christ, His love, forgiveness, grace and mercy how could I even consider turning away from the peace that affords. Craziness! But the ministry for which I’ve been called, I can say in the 7 years since then, that I’ve pondered the notion of stepping out of it on a few occasions. It’s not easy being on God’s staff. I hadn’t really thought of it in that capacity until a few weeks ago, but that’s what being called is and it bears a pressure that is unseen to most. I’m not complaining, nor God forbid, am I seeking accolades. Stick with me as I get to where I am going.

This morning as I often do, I scrolled Facebook before getting out of bed just to see if anything happened whilst I slept upon my pillow. I know. That shouldn’t be the first thing on my mind when I get up, but it often is, because it’s handy. But as I scrolled I noticed a post on a pretty popular preacher and one I happen to listen to each week online. The post was one with a headline intended to entice the reader to click the link for more to the story and upon so doing I discovered an outright lie, meant as satire against the preacher. I didn’t know the person who shared the post, it was on a page for Christian bloggers, not on a “friends” page. The post sickened me because I’ve seen God’s people torn down so much lately.

Please don’t misunderstand, no one has been mean to me or critical; but there is an ever increasing awareness that everything I do is under scrutiny by the world because to the unsaved and to many saved people, ministry is a performance.

I was listening this week to the same preacher mentioned on the Facebook post, who had encouraged my soul on the matter of where God has me at in life and he spoke these words, “God didn’t call me to be a performer, and that takes the pressure off of me.” I found great truth in that statement. Too often I look at my ministry, be it singing or speaking, as a performance. It is in that capacity I’ve set myself up to be rated as a performer and critiqued by the world who has no spiritual foundation to do so.

There is one judge, and that is Christ Jesus.

But I live in a fallen world who feels they’re entitled to put every minister of God on trial, be they super star, local pastor, Sunday School Teacher or serving saint.

We’ve not progressed a whole lot in 2000 years in regards to that matter. Apostle Paul said in his day in 1 Corinthians 4:1-5

Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful. But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man’s judgment: yea, I judge not mine own self. For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord. Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

There’s a manner of judging ministers that’s acceptable. Do they line up with the Word of God? That’s not judging, that good sense. But when it comes to a minister’s heart, there is no place for that in God’s word. I’m not so much concerned with a minister who’s suddenly become rock star status, because usually, the minister didn’t do it. It was the people that launched them there. That too happened in bible days. Paul said in Chapter 3 of 1 Corinthians that they were doing that very thing with him and Apollos. But what happens when they achieve that status is it opens the door for Satan to have greater access as well and more damage to the Kingdom of God.

The danger lies not so much in what the world thinks but what Christians say. A Christian judging a pastor or other servant of God gives a validity to doubt the authenticity of the word of God. That’s what stirred my dander this morning when I saw that post. The fact that a Christian was spreading a non-fact as truth without researching the matter cast a doubt upon a man of God who’s sharing the gospel. That is dangerous ground to tread on.

So before we utter the first word of “critique” on a minister of the gospel or a child of God, we need to understand that they’re not performing, they’re relaying a God given message or ability for the purpose of edifying the Kingdom. Those who cast doubt will one day stand before the Almighty God and give account for that.

They’re style or delivery of the message may not float your boat, but you are not Captain of the Gospel Ship.

Post positive things for the cause of Christ. There’s enough negative Nancy’s out there in cyberspace.

3 Reasons to Add More Preaching to Your Diet

I love good preachin’! I’ve often said, and it may sound odd to those who know how much I love music, but for me I’d rather listen to preaching. It’s much like a song to my heart because it stirs my soul much like music does. With one exception… music doesn’t generally convict. Some songs may… but for the most part they soften and tenderize the heart for the word of God, or they encourage us in our walk with Jesus Christ. Both are needful and the Bible speak of both, but the greater share of emphasis should be on the preaching of the word.

Romans 10:13-15

For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

3 Reasons you should make Preaching a Large part of your diet:

Seeking Salvation

Yours of course, but once you’re saved, you should be seeking salvation for others. It’s the primary purpose of the child of God but it seems to be lost on most of the world. Many Christians lose sight of it past Sunday morning. We rejoice when someone gives their life to Christ! But then the world takes over Monday morning. It’s hard to stay focused on the mission when Satan is so very good at his, which is to take our focus off the mission of seeing souls save and putting it on the problems in and around us.

Seeking Solutions

The Word of God is amazing! Whether it’s read or preached it speaks to heart of the matter in our souls. Countless times I have left a service pretty sure someone had spilled the beans on the sins of my life to the preacher because his sermon stepped all over my already tender toes. All the while someone else receive an entirely different message from the same sermon. How could that be? Because that’s the power of the Word of God. When seeking answers to life’s problems the bible should always be our first resort, not our last. But is it? Not generally speaking.

Seeking Sanctuary

One of the sweetest times of life is in the presence of the Holy Spirit. For certain He loves good Christian music, but the Word of God being preached can be so soothing to the soul in days of distress and doubt. It reaffirms our faith, builds strength in our souls, highlights areas of our life that need work and most of all creates a dialogue between us and the Lord.

I’m a preaching junky. I seek it out. I’m in church every service available and when I’m not I love listening to it via YouTube and Podcasts. I have my favorite preachers, and for the record they’re not all Baptist. We don’t’ have the exclusive on the Holy Spirit.

That being said, I do listen to preachers who preach what I believe. And I’d advise great caution in choosing an online ministry to follow. There’s some junk that people throw into their sermons that will undo the good work your preacher is doing in your life by causing you to doubt what you’ve been taught. If you’re unsure of who you should follow, ask your preacher. And you should have your own personal, local pastor; one that you attend his services and have a relationship with that allows you to ask questions like that.

Seek God’s word today!


I’ll not complain when the power and blessings of the Holy Spirit bring unexplainable and unspeakable joys in my life for my service through the studying of His Word and the sharing of the Gospel. That is a gift of unmeasurable worth! But through the coercing of others in the ministry, who see my work as worthy, and the coercing of the Holy Spirit Who says “Through His blood I am worthy,” I have added a ministry donation button to this site. If you do not have, or do not feel inclined to give, then please don’t feel obligated. But if I have encouraged you and the Spirit speaks, your gift of any amount would be appreciated and honored by God.

I do what I do because I’m gifted and afforded the opportunity by grace and feel that I am accountable for the ministry that God has given. God has been enlarging my territory. For that I am grateful. But for that, there are expenses. Thank you for reading my blog. It encourages my soul, I pray I’ve encouraged yours!

To Contribute to this ministry follow the Paypal Link!

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The Backslider’s Gospel

backsliderAs I read the opening of Apostle Paul’s letter to the Galatians this morning, I felt as if I should start this blog:

Shari, a servant of Christ (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead:) and all the brethren (and sisters) who are with me, unto the churches of Calhoun County. Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ.

What a regal introduction. We take, or should I say “I take, my calling of God for granted.” Paul was writing to the churches of Galatia because they were believing a polluted form of the gospel.  Paul marveled that they were “so soon removed from him that called you unto the grace of Christ unto another gospel.”  (Galatians 1:6b) And as I read across those verses I thought back about the people that I have seen give their lives to Christ at an altar of grace and tsmhen were so soon removed. Those who I had watched walk and serve Christ. Not as those do who get saved and vanish. Which is often the issue with a soul will who comes searching for a temporary fix to a permanent problem rather than a permanent fix to a temporary problem. Whew! That a good word right there! But the folks I think on are those who I served with for years sometimes; and then one day they were just gone. Believing another gospel? They’d likely say no. Because they’re not serving in another church. They’re absent without leave, and believing a gospel for which they aren’t even aware.

The Backslider’s Gospel

A backslider’s gospel is perhaps what I would call it. For some reason or another they found their time could be better spent outside of the church. They occasionally come on Christmas and Easter. A funeral attendance will heap conviction upon their shoulders for a good thirty minutes after the service. But then they determine that Sunday is like any other day. And they can love God on Monday just as well. They have nothing to prove by being in church.

Just as I need to be reminded Who it is and why it is that I serve Christ, a backslidden Christian too needs a reminder. Paul said in verses 15-16 “But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace. To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood: Neither went I up to Jerusalem to which were apostles before me ; but I went to Arabia, and retruned again unto Damascus.”

While Paul didn’t go to where the other Apostles were, he was still in the ministry. He was preaching and teaching the gospel as the Holy Spirit revealed it to Him. He wasn’t called to follow the church, or the leaders, he was called to follow God. So be it when someone leaves our church and moves on to serve in another, I’m not concerned for their soul. I miss them, I’m like a mother hen I want all my peeps in one place, but I’m spiritually mature enough to know that’s not always the way God sees it.

But when someone leaves church for the house… no… that’s not God’s plan. That’s a backslider’s gospel. That is the one that allows you to believe that you can be “be just as good at the house as you can in church.” No you can’t. You’ll tell yourself that you’ll read your bible and listen to the word of God. For a while maybe, then you won’t. You’ll tell yourself that you don’t need Christian fellowship. Yes you do. All these things serve a purpose in your life that you don’t want to live without. You can survive. But not nearly as well.

The gospel not only convicts the soul of sin, but it soothes the heart.

Sin may not be continuously on your door step after you leave the church, but Satan will be. He’ll place things in your life to assure you stay away from God’s house, because even Satan knows you’re better off in church.

The fellowship of believers may cause a disagreement now and then, but there is no truer friend than that of the body of Christ if you’re in the right church.

The Backslider’s gospel is the most deceiving of all. Because it tells you “You’re okay.” And you’ll be okay until you’re not and then you’ll be away from everything and everyone that can help you make it through the rough patches of life. And then Satan will convince you that nobody cares. What a liar!

If you’re away from God. Get your heart and mind set for Sunday morning. Be in your seat. If you’ve not yet left, but you’re contemplating it, hang on to the back of that pew with every ounce of strength you have and then hit the altar and ask God to help you through. Don’t go to church for the sake of other people. Go to church for you.

A Nice Thought To Begin the Day

fireNobody is any more surprised than we ourselves when something we’ve said ends up being the start of a pathway to destruction. Yet, there it is in James 3:5

Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things, Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!

As I read through James last night and this morning, preparing my Sunday School lesson for the teen department; I am reminded that the same tongue that can start a fire of destruction… and we all know it can! Can also start a fire for the cause of Christ that will burn until His return and God won’t mind in the least! As a matter of fact He’ll reward us for the effort. I pray that my thoughts and God’s words unite to ignite my youth. I pray that’s true in your church too.

The tongue is such a small portion of the body, and yet yields so much power. So do each of us in the body of Christ. That’s a nice thought to begin the Lord’s Day with. Encourage one another today!

It’s Your Job

upside down chick

My ministry is diverse to say the least. Every day I am wife, mother, Noni and friend, Sunday’s I’m kind of a jack of all trades: Sunday School Superintendent, teacher, pray-er, marketing, and music. Monday–Friday I’m in Jesus Chick mode – the writer, Tuesday’s I’m Violin instructor, and tonight I’m devotion leader, Wednesday’s I’m youth group leader, Thursday’s I’m a student of guitar, Friday’s I’m a fiddle instructor and advanced fiddle student and Saturday I plan for Sunday. Any given day I can be scheduling music groups or planning events, I have two on the horizon this week! Wow… I just wore myself out. I said all that not to get a feather in my cap, but to say life is busy. Yours is no doubt the same but the list and purpose may differ. My question for you is my question for me as I go through the day to day “stuff”  –   Is this stuff fluff or faith.

I love it. After God dragged me for 5 years I finally got with the program, although it’s still not always clearly defined for me, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt for the first time in my life I’m exactly where God wants me to be. If only I could become who He wants me to be… He’s still working on that. I’ve gone through months and months of guilt about not having a “real job.” Because that’s who I’ve always been and how my life has been defined. I needed a title. I always wanted a job with a uniform because I thought that would be fun and official, I almost had one once… and about the time the company was going to order them and I was settling in to the new me, God yanked that job out from under me and said “Are you kidding?” You’d trade me for a cute shirt? What can I say… I’m fickle.

I’ve always considered my career as a place of ministry, that I would be a light in those dark places. And some of them were very, very dark. And I know I made an impact because many of the people I worked with still come to me for prayer or advice and what a blessing that is! And perhaps for you that is where you are, you are that light in that dark place. That’s a real ministry. But are you treating it as such. Is it fluff or is it faith. Fluff will pay the bills, but faith paves the way to eternity with eternal rewards and if you’re a child of God, it’s your real job regardless of position or title, or cute shirt you wear.

In Act Chapter 18 we find Paul being a tent maker. At least for a while he helped his friends, Priscilla and Aquila, make tents.

Verse 1-3

After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth; And found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla; (because that Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome:) and came unto them. And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation they were tentmakers.

After these things… it really was some “thing” if you read Chapter 17. In verse six it is said that they have turned the world upside down” and following that he was run out of a few other cities. There wasn’t any fluff involved in what Paul did. He continued in service to the Lord in the position he was in. Whether it be preacher, teacher or tent maker, he preached Christ and he stirred the people up.

That’s what I hope I do for you today. I hope I stir you up and cause you to realize that where ever you are it is your job to speak Christ. You may say, “But it’s forbidden.” That’s a tough place to be in, I’ve been there… and I was asked to stop. But somehow or another God paved the way for me to speak Jesus anyway. I’m not saying it will be easy, and it may take some creativity to bring it to pass, but it’s your job. You may also say, “But there’s nobody around.” If you’re reading my blog, you have a means of spreading the gospel… be creative! I want us to turn the world upside down!

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Do you need to regroup this Christmas?

chick regroup

Christmas. What a wonderful, magical, depressing, jolly, agitating, sentimental, disastrous, lovely, argumentative, splendiferous season. I’m blessed to be part of a church family that together focuses on the Christ of Christmas throughout this season with special nights and programs that slow me down. I’m afforded and blessed as well to have time of my own to regroup my thoughts and wrap myself up with the Holy Spirit of God rather than scotch tape and frilly paper. But even so life gets messy.  My mind races and my to-do lists pile high and this morning even with all the blessings in my life I need to regroup and remember three things about the season I’m in. I’m glad you’re here with me and I’m praying that you and I can regroup for Christmas.

2 Corinthians 8

The Grace of Christmas

1 Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia;

Paul speaks to the church of Corinth about the testimony of grace belonging to the church of Macedonia. I wonder this morning if I’m hogging all the grace for myself this Christmas. The  grace of God that I’ve experienced through awesome times in the Lord with my Church family, that I wouldn’t trade for the world, were needful experiences but were confined to the walls of Victory Baptist Church. The church of Macedonia’s grace was outside the walls of the sanctuary and evident in the community. My Grace needs relocated.

The Gravity of Christmas

How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.

Although America is in a mess spiritually, I’m still free to worship Jesus and tell the story of His love, I have food on my table, a home, car, I have stuff… abundant stuff. I don’t get the gravity of actual needs that so many experience 365 days a year. Christmas for them will be another day without even so much as the fundamentals in life. This was where the church of Macedonia was at, in trials and deep poverty yet rich in liberality. The church of Macedonia gave as if they were rich believing that every need they had would be provided for. My gravity (importance) needs redistributed.

The Gift of Christmas

For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves;

Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.

The power of the church of Macedonia came from their willingness to give beyond what was possible. The gift of Christmas has always been sacrifice. The world is in love with the Babe in the manger, but the Babe was just the beginning of the story of God in the flesh, who became the final sacrifice and atonement for sin. The gift of life that I’m given is more than the ability to breathe, it’s my ability to serve. What a gift! For certain Macedonia was sharing the gift of the gospel, but they didn’t stop there. They knew their world needed Jesus, but perhaps before they could receive Him, they needed nourishment for the strength to go on. Yes, my community needs Jesus… but they may need their gas bill paid, or their lights turned on, or a turkey on the table for Christmas.

My Gifts need re-gifted.

Thank You Heavenly Father for the countless gifts I’ve received. Keep my eyes open, my heart willing and my hands ready to serve this Christmas.

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Things that are separate are sometimes together

chick ministry

Having worked in the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ for several years now I feel that I have a few tee shirts in my closet of the places I have been and the troubles I have seen to allow my opinion to be notable. (perhaps only Post-It ® note worthy) but noteworthy none the less. I have had to take stands over the course of my 19 years in the ministry that were not always popular and on very rare occasions, alone. And when I say alone, there would have probably been many who would have stood with me, if they had known that I was taking a stand. But sometimes in the case of leadership you take an inward stand because the outward conflict would do more harm than good to the cause of Christ if the issue never comes to a resolution.

I know that’s a vague statement, but stay with me and I’ll get this bus to the drop off point.

If you are a part of a congregation of believers where there are more than two, there is likely a separation in the church of ideology. Theology should be agreed upon, but our ideas are just that… “our” ideas. And they often collide like bumper cars in an amusement park, except without the laughter. It’s just human nature. The problem with that is as saved people we’re not supposed to be natural.

1 Corinthians 2:14

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

Now I get that we cannot get rid of that natural man that wars against the spiritual man within us but if the natural man or woman wins, at some point in that battle, we’ve stopped listening to the Spirit of God. So what are we to do as leaders in the church when our ideas don’t line up with others in the church and we believe we’re right? When things that are separate, are together. What then?  I’m pretty sure I’m right when I say we should talk to the One Who’s never wrong. God.

In Romans 1:1 apostle Paul said that he was …separated unto the gospel of God.

Separated from what? From the world and natural man to the spiritual. He no longer considered himself to be a part of this this world, yet that’s where he was, and it was his job to share the gospel. As believers, whether or not you’ve been called into the ministry you have still been called to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. So you too have been separated like Paul, unto the gospel. That automatically, like it or not, puts you on a different playing field in life. You are held to a higher accountability than the world around you.

Romans 1:5-6

By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name: Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:

Now if you’ve been called into actual ministry work, your field just got higher still.

Romans 1:9-13

For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers; Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you. For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established; That is, that I may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me. Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.

Paul desired to preach in Rome, but God had other plans, he was let hitherto. Paul knew through the Spirit of God that he was not to go to Rome, even though that was his desire. And so it is when we get ideas of our own that we want one thing and God wants another. For certain God has only one plan. Paul was in tune spiritually enough to know what it was. So what if there are people in the church with two ideas? It is for certain that only one of them is the one God wants, because God’s not in division. And if there’s division, someone’s wrong. When that’s happened, and it has, I’ve had to step out of the way. Sometimes I had to bite my tongue off. But I had to trust that God’s will would be accomplished. It’s hard to be separate when we’re together. When we don’t agree with someone in our midst. Paul reminded his friends that even though they were not together physically, they had one thing in common. Mutual faith.

Did some people get upset because they didn’t get their way? Possibly. But those in mutual faith, stayed put and waited for God to work out His amazing plan. God’s plan is always amazing, ours may seem amazing, but if God’s not in it, it will end in disaster. Mutual faith is remembering that we’re not here to please us. We’re here to please God.

What You Can Do Today for Our Youth

chick school

It’s the first day of school in our area, perhaps your youth began earlier or not yet, but it’s no doubt on the horizon. And with it comes concerns which differ depending on the region… or the day. Things changes so quickly and what our young people are exposed to is beyond comprehension in comparison to what it was like not so many years ago. As I lifted my youth group to the Lord this morning my heart was heavy for them, they’re good kids in a bad world… My heart aches for them. These thoughts brought me to the Word of God this morning in search of a Word of encouragement for youth workers, parents and anyone concerned for our youth. And here’s where I landed…

Luke 21:38

And all the people came early in the morning to him in the temple, for to hear him.

This wasn’t only Sunday but week days as well… These where the days between Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem and the day of crucifixion. How quickly things can change. As we set here in the days between His crucifixion and return we too should find ourselves in the presence of the Lord each morning. Jesus preached in the town each morning but at night He would lodge about a mile away in the Mount of Olives; away from the noise of the city and the hustle and bustle of life. Probably away from the religious folk. Jesus’ examples for us are needful reminders in this hectic world that we need time to wind down in the evening; but in the morning as the day begins we should find ourselves in the presence of the Lord seeking a sermon for our souls.

Those who met with Jesus in the temple weren’t there to sit easy in the pew. They had faced some opposition to get there and so will you. I presented my Pocket Testament League program to my youth last night and asked them to start a league of their own.  To commit to reading a portion of scripture every day and share the gospel. They’ll be facing huge opposition to accomplish that task. I encourage you as well to get your bible, or look at it online and pick you out a sermon for the soul. It’s in there… words that will encourage your heart and spear you on for service. And then share what you read with someone else. God’s Word never returns void.

If you’d like to be a member of the Pocket Testament League you can join at www.ptl.org/code/signup.php. They have so many free resources to help you on your walk with Christ and becoming more like Christ. Resources that will teach you how to share the gospel and then give you the tools to do just that! It’s an awesome place to hang your hat for a while. If you decide to join the league (there’s no cost) please enter my membership number when prompted (574096) I want you in my league!

But before you go… take just a minute to lift up our kids to the Lord. Please pray as the Lord leads you but a few suggestions from me would be this…

  • Pray they are hedged in with safety
  • They are shielded from wickedness
  • They are a light in that dark world
  • They are brave in their witness
  • They are bold in their testimony
  • They are support for one another
  • They study (Jesus, English, Math, etc.)