Tag Archives: soul winning

Do You Care?

We love Him, because He first loved us. ~ 1 John 4:19

There are some people in our lives that are easy to love. My bestie Gloria is one such person, so are countless others. I am blessed with people. Lots of people that I call and mean it when I say they’re friends. And then there are people that I am acquaintances with via life or social media and of those I may or may not have a great depth of concern for.

I would certainly pull them out of the path of a truck. But I might not take them chicken soup if they were ill. That sounds very mean. But it’s not meant to be. It’s not that I don’t care about their health, it’s that they are not on my radar of cares of the day. Nor am I likely on their radar either. So how exactly did God intend for us to love one another?

What is our level of compassion for those outside our immediate family and friends?

For me I only had to think about 1 John 4:19 for a split second before I realized that before I knew God, before I realized what He did for me and when I was just floating around in the world like a bubble on a summer day without concern for my soul or anyone else’s… He loved me.

He loved me when I was out in sin and behaving in a manner that would have made a sailor blush. Yes, I was that kid. I grew up fast when I married and had children, but I still didn’t know Jesus and was as filthy rags, and yet He loved me. He maneuvered my life to get me into a position to hear the gospel in a miraculous way that has me in awe today. He uses me even yet today when I still fail Him miserably.

Now… I ask myself that question again about the people I don’t know. “Shari, do you care?”  I asked myself that question about the people I’m pretty sure I don’t even like. “Do you care?”

I ask, because at any moment God could have given up on me or never thought enough of me to waste His time and yet He did.

This morning I was convicted by this thought because there are so many hurting people that I know via ministry and social media that I don’t care enough about. Ministry isn’t just to the pretty, easy to love people. Its’ for all people. Even the sometimes ugly, grouchy, negative, arrogant,  drunk and drugged up people. The latter of which I have an easier time loving. The grouchy, negative, arrogant people not so much.

I’m wondering who might cross my path today that needs loved on? I’m wearing a new pair of white jeans… I wonder if I’m willing to get them dirty. Isn’t that how we decide?

I have a doctor’s appointment for my knee this morning at 10 a.m. Perhaps it’s there that I’ll answer that question. Maybe it will be on social media, or maybe on an unplanned adventure. Like the one that got me saved.

A Field of Dreams

Windom, Minnesota. I leave every year with new, and sweet memories. Every year it’s different and yet the same. I leave wanting to stay longer, that’s the same. I leave with new friends, that’s the new. I left with a deeper respect for folks like Loretta Jackson, whose tiny little frame stood on the platform of the BARC and gave the gospel, glorified her Savior and let the city know, God makes no mistakes. Even allowing her to battle cancer… again.

My new friend Nita Killabrew, wife of Minnesota Twin Player and Baseball Hall of Fame, Harmon Killebrew blew me away as she proved that God uses humble, God glorifying people. Both of their struggles were awe inspiring and evidence that we are all without excuse for being happy in the Lord and allowing the world to see how He works in our lives! I learned so many that I will forever treasure. I learned the power of humility.

Pastors Rick Frederickson and Phil Anderson preached messages of hope but not without conviction that stirred my soul deeply. They shared the salvation of Christ in a manner that many ministers of today have failed to do because in a world blinded by political correctness and niceties, preaching like that is forbidden and considered offensive. Both men preached on! As well as FGGAM.org’s own Dewey Moede who never fails to share Jesus! I am proud to have been a part of this team. Because the platform may have been filled with varying denominations, but no variance in belief. Jesus. That’s it. Nothing else for salvation!

The Windom Revival touches lives each year and restores the relationship of Christ with His people. It reminds us all that there is a home for which we long for, where we’ll all have the same address. Made possible by the acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. It’s not Minnesota or West Virginia, but that glorious place called Heaven.

Below is my first night’s message. Windom, really was a field of dreams. It’s where hope came to encourage those seeking. I hope you enjoy the message, and I pray you have people in your life that encourage you each day. God Bless! ~ Shari

FIELD OF DREAMS

1 Corinthians 9 King James Version (KJV)

Minnesota. Driving through this country is not like anything in my part of West Virginia. If there’s an acre of flat ground where I live it’s a miracle. And it usually has a house built on it. Everything else is rolling hills and mountains, which is what I love about West Virginia. But in Minnesota, you can see forever, which is what I love about Minnesota. One field flows into another of crops that someone stands in hope of reaping the blessing of their work. That is my hope for Windom.

John 4:35

Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.

I came here with hope that the fields of Windom are ready to harvest! So what are we hoping to harvest? I’m glad you ask. Because what I want to see harvested in the fields of Windom is some pretty exciting stuff.

I know Dewey is a huge baseball fan. And I must confess, sports ain’t my thing. I go to games to see the people in the crowd, not the athletes. People go to games to see the players. In the life of the church, I’m the player. I’m the one out in the field either striking out, or hitting a homerun for Team Jesus. I’m the one who has the crowds cheering me on in Heaven, and sometimes on earth. And tonight, I’m a player on Windom’s team. In 1st Corinthians Chapter 9, the Apostle Paul says this:

Am I am not an apostle? am I not free? have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? are not ye my work in the Lord?

The Windom Minnesota team has worked for months on this event. You being here tonight is our work in the Lord. I don’t ever believe that something just “happens.” There is purpose in everything that is done in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. I’m not an apostle but I am a servant for the Lord Jesus Christ. And tonight Windom Minnesota is my field and I’m gonna work it just like Harmon Killebrew did for the Minnesota Twins. I want the victory!

I’ve come tonight to share my field of dreams for Windom. In that same book of First Corinthians 9, beginning in verse 9 the word of God says this:

For it is written in the law of Moses, thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen?

Your response to that likely is, “What on earth are you talking about?”

The farmers of today, especially with the size field that Minnesota has, likely don’t use an ox to plow the field, they use the technology of the day. But in the time scripture was written, oxen was the technology of the day. And Paul used them as an illustration on taking care of the ministers of the gospel.

You weren’t supposed to muzzle the ox, you were to let him eat of the field, it was his pay. And the same is true of the ministers of the Gospel. They too deserve paid. But this is not about ministers getting paid. This is about why two West Virginia girls would drive 1000 miles to plow the fields of Minnesota that we may or may not even get to enjoy the harvest. Revival may happen after we leave. And that’s okay. I’m here to stoke the fire! My key verse is verse 10

Or saith he it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that ploweth should plow in hope; and that he that thresheth in hope should be partaker of his hope.

I came to Windom to plow the field by sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ, that is my field of dreams. And I’d go anywhere else the Lord lead me to experience a revival. Paul said later on in chapter 9 verse 16

For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!

There were some people in West Virginia that were seriously not happy that I came to Windom. Six grandbabies for starters and my 83 year old mother who may or may not forgive me for missing my family reunion this weekend. Whose closing argument was “Well, I guess we know who you love more.”

I don’t love you more, but I do love you as much. And I came to plow this field for 3 reasons:

Because I’m committed to Christ

17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.

18 What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.

19 For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.

I don’t charge anyone to come to Windom. I believe that God will take care of me. And He’s never failed. I come to Windom because there’s a group of people here who want revival as much as I do. Not only for their town but more importantly themselves. Salvation is not about coming to a church service on Sunday and leaving the same way you went in. It’s about a 7 day a week, 24 hours a day relationship that gives you hope in any situation. Apostle Paul was –imprisoned, beaten, and eventually lost his head and he counted it all joy. Nobody here is having that bad a day today. But we all have bad days. How many of you stand in need of hope for something in your life? Me too! And I have the answer for you and me both. Jesus! But we have to work our fields. You cannot get the blessings of Jesus without serving Jesus. That has nothing to do with salvation. You can get saved and sit until glory. But you’ll be a honey dipper in heaven. That’s what they call the people who clean outhouses.

I plow the fields I’m given, and Windom is one,

Because I’m committed to Windom

20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.

22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

23 And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.

I fell in love with Windom in 2016. That wasn’t hard. You are genuinely good people. Minnesota Nice! I became, in my mind, a citizen of this city. Paul said he was a Jew for the Jews and a Gentile for the Gentiles. It doesn’t matter what city or state we’re in if we’re children of God we are all working for the same thing!

Because Commitment will Win us a Crown

24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.

25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.

26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:

27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

I keep running this race and working for the Lord because there is a crown of victory at the end that I can’t wait to reach. I almost did this year when I had three heart attacks and ignored the symptoms until they landed me flat on my back for a double bypass. Just two months ago! I shouldn’t be here for a number of reasons, but one of them is an 8 scar down the front of my chest that healed at a miraculous rate for me to get here. I shocked doctors. And I was privilege to tell them, my Jesus did that! He’s got work for me to do.

It wasn’t easy. But when Harmon Killebrew determined he was going to continue on regardless of what the world threw his way, it wasn’t easy either. But we’re celebrating his life tonight and he is celebrating in Heaven.

I don’t want one Windom friend to miss out on meeting Harmon Killebrew face to face. But more importantly I don’t want you to miss out on meeting Jesus face to face. It’s why I’m plowing this field tonight. I came believing that the fields of Windom were white and ready to Harvest!

If you came here looking to win victory over anything in your life. You’ll find it through Jesus Christ. But first you have to be saved. You have to be one of His children.

That happens only by you accepting Him as Lord and Savior of your life. No works. No field plowing. I plow out of gratitude. Not to be saved.

You are saved by admitting you’re a sinner who needs a Savior. We know as children, crime brings a punishment. Sin was the crime and Christ paid the price of death so you didn’t have to.

Jesus is that Savior and you have to believe that lock stock and barrel. Virgin born, crucified on the cross, risen the third day and now He’s in Heaven as your public defender. And for every sin, past, present and future He tells the Devil. It’s under my blood they’re forgiven.

You have trust what He did as enough.

If you believe that you have won the greatest Victory in your life. If you believe that do something about it tonight. If it’s your first night. Tell somebody on the Windom team. If you’ve been on this team for a while, commit to a deeper relationship and greater service, and tell somebody. Don’t keep it a secret that will keep it from happening.

 

Freeloaders in the Flock

No automatic alt text available.Driving to play music with a secular crowd, I prayed that God would open the door to share the gospel.  Boy did He! He opened it wide open and in true “Jesus Chick” form I walked out on the porch of that opportunity with my mouth wide open and for an hour and a half I debated faith. The opportunity was great, my delivery I’m not so sure about. It’s the problem with being a “leap and the net will appear” kind of gal; not only do I leap and believe the net will appear, I also speak and believe the words will appear. This has on more than one occasion got me into trouble. Only because I don’t slow down to hear what God’s speaking to my soul.

Luke wrote in chapter 12, verses 11 and 12: And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say: For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.

Well, I didn’t give it any thought, I just spoke from my heart. I’m just so doggone passionate about what my Lord has done! I know He’s okay with that, God doesn’t need any freeloaders in the flock. It’s not a works salvation, but James said in Chapter 2, Verse 18 “Yea, a man say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.”  That too was a piece of my conversation. There is no works required for salvation, Jesus did it all, but there most certainly should be some evidence.’

 

My “freeloaders in the flock” statement came from a conversation I had with my friend Gloria about my new critter passion, the chickens. Sue, Glo, Butterscotch and Toffee and 4 everyday variety of chickens I’ve yet to give names. My husband wanted the chickens for what they produce, I wanted the chickens because they make me smile. The little babies “peep peeps,” and the antics of the grown chickens remind me in more ways than one of the flock of God. But my husband, in the confidence of a husband, said “No freeloaders.” I, in the confidence of his wife, smiled.  He knew what that meant. No, chicken killin’. But I understand his theory, if we feed them, they “should” follow that up by rewarding us with an omelet or two.

Well, I believe the same as a child of God. If He provides for me in every aspect of life, both physically and spiritually, should I not produce something in my life for Him?

3 WAYS NOT TO BE A FREELOADER

Win souls

It’s the most gut wrenching, fortifying method of serving Christ of all the ways we have to serve. Gut wrenching from the standpoint that you are standing toe to toe with the devil as he tries to undo every deed you do. For every statement of persuasion I would make for Christ, Satan would fuel the fire with human intelligence and logic. It is during those times that I am apt to speak before the Holy Spirit has a chance to get a word in edge wise. It’s not easy, but it is most assuredly worth the war.

Work the Gospel

I know we are a “no works” salvation. But Jesus worked, and if we’re to follow in His footsteps and live as He lived there is work involved. See a need, fill a need. That was His way and should be our way. We should be praying and watching for opportunities to serve others in the name of Jesus Christ so that others can see and believe He is Lord of our lives and a game changer for theirs.

Worship

In my human opinion one of the worst cases of freeloading is when able bodied children of God don’t find the time to make it to church. They make the time for work, every form of play known to man, they’ll never miss a hair appointment or an oil change in the worst of weather, but when it comes to taking care of their soul, and thanking the very God who created them and saved them, He is the last on their list. Oh, I know… I’m preaching now. But one of the hardest things to overcome when trying to win a soul to Christ is standing in the defense of freeloaders of the flock. There’s no excuses we can offer.

Has the church lost it’s compassion?

Has the church lost its compassion for souls? I don’t really have to wonder. I need only look at my own life for the answer. I get so wrapped up in the “stuff” of the church that I forgo the winning of souls. In n the book of Matthew 9 we see the heart of Jesus that should reflect the hearts of the children of God. When He looked around at the multitudes of people He was moved with compassion. This verse is the precursor to the often quoted 9:37b “The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few.” There is still a multitude, and it is unfortunate that the laborers are still few.

How many souls will we pass today? I’m not always out and about but I thought about the quick run I made yesterday to the local convenience store. Too quick to think about Jesus, I guess. One thing about living in a community the size of ours is we usually know who’s in church and who’s not. The girl behind the counter was not. Where was my compassion?

But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. ~ Matthew 9:36

Three things I see in Matthew 9:36 that stirs my soul today to serve Him.

The Wanderers

The multitudes of the souls that wander aimlessly in search of something, anything that will give them a sense of belonging and purpose. And we have it but don’t bother to share it. The world is directionally challenged because the church’s GPS is on silent. We have the map to direct them to Heaven, but we’re not doing it. Long before I was saved I knew there was a direction I should be traveling, but deed, I couldn’t find it. The church was silent. No one who came across my path bothered to look at the longing in my eyes to be a part of Heaven. I had a family who loved me, but I knew something was missing. I longed for a sense of purpose and I found it when I found the Heavenly Father. I wandered 34 years before a soul compassionate to move the world was moved enough to tell me about Jesus.

The Weary

They’re fainting. You can see it in their eyes. Everyone struggles. We have no idea on the outside what is going on the inside.  I have to wonder today what would have happened yesterday if I had taken the time with that store clerk just to say, I’d like to pray for you if you have a need. I have a feeling she’d have told me, but I didn’t ask.

The Wanting

Just as it was in Jesus’ day, so it is today. The world fills our heads with the vanity of religion. Vanity from the standpoint that it is filled with traditions and obligations as the saints “do what they have to do” for the sake of the church and call it faith. Why would anyone want what the church has today? A body of believers who put God on a schedule and only allow Him to speak to their souls from 11 a.m. to noon on Sunday. A handful come back Sunday evening and Wednesday, but there is a multitude visible to the world who see them having no desire for a relationship with the One called Jesus. The One, who when they’re ask, they’ll say He means everything to them, but in truth doesn’t mean anything to them outside the walls of the church. Why would they want that?

Jesus wept for His community. When’s the last time we wept for ours?

My friend LuAnn drove 5 hours to share the gospel with our community at the barn blast a week or so ago. She has an obedient compassion filled soul. I’ve seen it in the preachers I heard last week and this week. Last night was another night of Revival, week 2 for me. My soul is stirred because I see the compassion in a man to win souls. Tonight is my turn to share the gospel with the teens in my youth group. Tomorrow night is another night of revival. The harvest is plenteous!

Whomever it was that said the eyes are the window to the soul, knew of what they spoke. Take the time to look someone in the eye today, and pray that God would open the door to share the gospel. The Spirit has to lead… but you have to follow to make it happen.

Praying over your lunch… ask the waitress if you can pray for them.

Have a track in your pocket or purse… it’s not doing any good there.

See someone hurting… patch the hole in their heart by sharing a piece of yours.

 

 

I Have an Issue with the Church

I’ve had it for quite some time. I just didn’t know how to verbalize it. But this morning I got somewhat of a grasp on my issue. It’s the same issue I have with my life right now. It’s what happens between the coming out and going in. The a.m. to the p.m. of my day. What am I doing for the cause of Christ? The early church didn’t have that problem, they were too busy trying to keep their heads off the chopping block. They knew what their purpose in life was, TELL THE WORLD ABOUT JESUS. But somehow between the cross and the crazy we call life in modern times we lost the purpose as a church. The church has now become this resting place for children of God. And while Christ did indeed stress the importance of rest, the rest was meant to prepare for the next leg of the journey.

When Apostle Paul got saved he made some people very uncomfortable. After all, he had been the one calling for the Christians to be killed, and now he professed to be one of them. It was no wonder they had an issue with Paul. But that didn’t stop Paul from pursuing the purpose that he now understood to be his, TELL PEOPLE ABOUT JESUS.

Chapter 9 begins Paul’s life post conversion.

He Joined the Church

26 And when Saul was come to Jerusalem, he assayed to join himself to the disciples: but they were all afraid of him, and believed not that he was a disciple. 27 But Barnabas took him, and brought him to the apostles, and declared unto them how he had seen the Lord in the way, and that he had spoken to him, and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus.

Paul knew that in order to grow in the grace of Christ and understand his new found faith, he needed to be with God’s people. So he joined the local church. That is step one following salvation. Find a local body of believers for whom you can serve with. That means, they too need to be serving, not just sitting.

He Joined the Movement

28 And he was with them coming in and going out at Jerusalem. 29 And he spake boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus, and disputed against the Grecians: but they went about to slay him. 30 Which when the brethren knew, they brought him down to Caesarea, and sent him forth to Tarsus.

Paul didn’t know all there was to know about Christianity, but through the Holy Spirit he was able to speak boldly in the name of Christ and face people who desired him dead because of it. Paul was more than a church member, he was a part of the movement.

I personally don’t see much movement in the church today. I see people going in and out of the buildings but outside of the church, the movement stops. Few are telling others about Christ and the discipling of young saints has all but stopped. If there are any young saints. When Paul began his journey, Barnabas took him under his wing and introduced him to the church and defended him. Barnabas helped to fuel the fire that he had witnessed burning inside of Paul. That is a missing piece in the church, there’s no fuel in the tank. How are we ever going to see a movement if people are not getting fired up?!

He Joined the Multitude

31 Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.

Because of the work of the church, the church had rest. That seems kind of oxymoron-ish doesn’t it. To work for rest? We wonder why this world is so crazy and full of strife? It’s because the church (as a whole) has all but stopped working. Our work is to show people where to find rest, and that rest comes in Jesus Christ. Once the churches of Judaea, Galilee and Samaria heard the preaching of Paul and the others, they obviously didn’t just rest in the pew waiting for next Sunday, it says they began walking and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost were multiplied.

The churches are drying up across America. It seems that at every bend in the road there sits an empty church house with overgrown grass and broken windows and it breaks my heart. The church is no longer a saving station but rather a rest stop. The church has lost touch with its purpose.

So what’s the answer? Give up on the church? Heaven’s NO! The answer is to follow Paul’s example. If you’re not part of a body of believers, you need to be. Once you’re there you need to serve, not sit. And never lose sight of the Mission… Muliply.

We are without excuse

#WithoutExcuse

We’re without excuse. I look about me this morning and I’m grateful for the “raisin’ up” I had in the hills of West Virginia. This is where God placed me and by His grace I was placed in the hands of two wonderful Holy Spirit filled parents. But were I not, I’d still be without excuse. And though I was, that still did not guarantee me to become who I am; a child of God. We all get to grace the same way, by accepting what Christ did; not by being born into a certain family. The world is so full of excuses. This morning I’ve had my eyeballs full…

  • The World says: “So and so made me who I am.”
    • No, “so and so” may have hurt you, but you decided who you are.”
  • The world says: “All religions lead to Heaven.”
    • No religion is just the practice of a learned behavior, Heaven comes from a relationship with Christ. Side note: If you have a relationship with someone, you’re pretty close.
  • The world says: “We control our destiny.”
    • Only so far as God allows. So technically you don’t.
  • The world says: “There is no God.”
    • Those who say that are without excuse because we’ve been raised better.

Gene and Violet Hardway raised me, but God raised me up.

Amos 2:11-13 says

And I raised up of your sons for prophets, and of your young men for Nazarites. Is it not even thus, O ye children of Israel? saith the Lord. But ye gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not. Behold, I am pressed under you, as a cart is pressed that is full of sheaves.

It is God who put me in a higher place that I may have the privilege of sharing the gospel. Not because I am great, but because I am His. A privilege afforded anyone who accepts the holiness, sacrifice and will of God. He has a purpose for you just as He had a purpose for Israel, and still does. But they rejected Him. Here God tells them I raised up your sons for prophets. God selected and set into place men of God to shine the light to Israel but they chose to ignore it; continually falling back into the ways of the world until disaster struck and then they’d call on God.  But there came a day when God had been rejected one too many times. (His eyeballs eventually got full too I guess.)

Is America there? God raised up prophets and of those He set aside the Nazarite men, many in the prime of their life vowed themselves to the service of God to the extreme, and today we have as those as well. Sure, there are those in the ministry who do not walk the walk they profess, but there are those who do. They’re not perfect, no man is, but they live what they preach. America is without excuse. I speak collectively. I’m an American, but my country is not here, my homeland awaits on the other side of Jordan.

I understand Amos’ frustration at Israel. That’s how I feel about the arrogant lot of people in my face every day. Those who justify their immoral behavior because of how they were raised or treated. I am truthfully sorry for your heartache… but you’re without excuse. Someone else may have hurt you, but Christ, the Creator of all the earth,  loved you enough to die for you and longs to be in a relationship with you through the Holy Spirit and you have hurt and turned your back on Him. He who is your perfect friend and Father. You are without excuse.

The trash talkers of the waves tell the world that all religions are right. Tell me any other than Christianity who’s God died for them.  None. Tell me any other religion that has the moral standards that every human being in their soul knows is right. None but Christianity. Tell me any other that puts themselves in the role of a servant to a heathen nation that rejects them so they might be saved. None but Christian. … Yes… I’m with Amos!

Our destiny is written in the scripture of old. It’s done. Or in Christ’s words, “It is finished.” The only thing we control is self-will; God has the power at any time to stop the world from spinning and throw us into space. Dwell on that thought for a second. God has put the evidence of Himself through His creation before us and He sent messengers to tell the world of His desire to be our Father. I am one.

Amos prophesied that when judgement came, and it would, it would feel like a cart bogged down with weight to the point it couldn’t move. How many in America feel like that today? I love America… but I do not love what she has become. I love her people… but I’m not fool enough to think that God won’t wipe that arrogance off of their faces through judgement so harsh I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.   Saved and unsaved we are without excuse.

There’s no excuse for rejecting Christ.

There’s no excuse for not telling someone about Him.

Christainity: I Pray it Goes Viral!

Christianity. You’d think it was almost the bubonic plague. No one wants to be around it, they avoid the house where in it dwells, nausea comes on quickly and Heaven forbid a child is exposed to it, whatever will become of them?! It would be funny if it weren’t so true. And so many dead Christians have been seen walking about, it’s no wonder communities have great fear in their hearts! So what exactly are the symptoms of a live Christian? And wouldn’t it be wonderful if it went viral!

In bible times Samaria was avoided by the Jews at all costs. The half Jew, half gentile sect was a disgrace to God (in their eyes) and not worthy ground to travel on, and so Christ said in John 4:4 – he must needs go through Samaria. Christ needed the world to see that no one was worthy, but everyone was welcome. It is there we find a time that Christianity went viral! Here are a few of the symptoms:

Constant Thirst –

When Jesus spoke to the woman at the well he told her in John 4:13b-14“Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life: And she responded “Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.

Deep down in the pits of our soul is a desire to know God. I remember as a child being aware of my need to know God. I did not understand it, but there was a thirst that I needed to know the Creator. As time went on God continued to call, but I kept drowning it out with the world. But the thirst to know was always there. When I got saved, my how that thirst increased! When I realized that God’s Son had paid the ultimate price for my sin, and that I no longer needed to fear death, hell and the grave! Oh glory I needed to “Who” He was. I read His word at every opportunity, I sat with His people and I attended His church. I thirsted!

Changed Traditions

15 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.16 Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither.17 The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband:18 For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly.19 The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.

She knew that Jesus was spot on with her sins, and something needed to change. When I accepted what Christ did for me I was so thankful, and so very aware that things in my life, the traditions I had set for my children and I needed to change.

Commitment to the Tabernacle

One of the major changes in my life was church attendance.

20 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

The woman at the well knew that this was an important part of faith. But she had worshipped whatever came her way. There comes a time when you have to set yourself apart for the apostasy of the world and worship the true and living God, and that calls for a commitment to what exactly it is that you believe. If you’re only there when it “fits in” to your schedule, that’s not commitment.

Continual Talking –

24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.25 The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things.26 Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.27 And upon this came his disciples, and marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her?28 The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men,29 Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?

When she discovered Who it was she spoke too, she couldn’t stop talking about Him to everyone she knew. It went viral. 30 Then they went out of the city, and came unto him.

Let it be so in our lives! Catch it!

A Conversation with the Lost on Forgiveness

This may or may not turn into a series, but the teacher of our family life class at church intrigued me yesterday on a study that they’re working on which is the “Topics of Conversation in Witnessing.” If you’ve ever gone soul winning you’ve likely encountered some topics of conversation that made you wish you were anywhere but there. If you’re new to soul winning (or sometimes old) it’s hard to get that conversation going and even harder to keep it on track; because the last thing many want to discuss is where they stand spiritually. Most would rather point out where the Christians they know fall short.

The class came up with about 14 topics they’d like to address and I would say there are countless others. But today I’ll only discuss one. If you have one you’d like to address, put it in the comments below and let’s get a conversation started!

Let’s talk about forgiveness…

I recently lead a devotion at a ladies meeting where I gave each of the ladies a shiny red square sticker for their bible. The sticker reminds us of what God see’s when He looks at us and what we should see when looking at someone else’s sin; that Christ’s blood covered them all.

I didn’t say it would be easy. Sometimes I’m tempted to take that sticker off and put it over my mouth to keep it shut!  Forgiveness is the greatest gift you can give or receive; comes with the highest price; and is considered the least. It’s easier to jump on the bandwagon and run someone through the mud than forgive and lift them up to the Lord. And that’s from a Christian standpoint. Now put it into the context of witnessing to an unsaved person who’s been hurt by family, friends or a Christian; sometimes quite severe. How can they begin to understand the unconditional forgiveness of Christ when they themselves are so angry and how can you explain it?

I love the life of King David; because it is full of success and failure, transgression and forgiveness, and most of all humility. None better illustrated than of the tale of Nathan the prophet who came to David after his sin with Bathsheba.

II Samuel 12:1-5

And the Lord sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor. The rich man had exceeding many flocks and herds: But the poor man had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter. And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man’s lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him. And David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, As the Lord liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die:

Boy oh boy was David angry…until he discovered it was a parable of him taking Uriah’s wife. That’ll humble a fella.

And so goes our own story. There was another lamb, that was slain; the Son of God. Slain to restore the broken relationship between God and man. The one thing that God wanted more than anything was us. And we’ve hurt Him again and again, and He has forgiven us again and again.  If anyone can understand how hard it is to forgive, it’s God. Nothing that has been done to us in our lives can even compare with what was done to His Son so that we could have forgiveness.

Helping a lost person understand that may not be easy, but it will always be worth it. Forgiveness is unlocking the cell you put yourself in. Can I get an Amen!