Thursday, November 24, 2016, 07:10 PM
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for,
the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11 is the great “Faith” chapter…Beginning with the definition of faith and working its way through the lives of God’s people, this chapter shows us how their faith was exhibited.
We see Able giving a more excellent sacrifice than Cain; Enoch pleasing God and being translated that he should not see death; Noah acted on faith to something unseen and Abraham acting out his faith by obedience. These are just a few.
Then verse six tells us: But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that cometh to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.
And in verse sixteen we see this phrase: ….wherefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God….
What does that phrase say to you?
Has it ever occurred to you that God could or even would be ashamed to be called “your” God?
Does your life exhibit the kind of lifestyle that He would approve of?
"Is" God ashamed to be called “your” God?
© LBG Ministries 2001
Thursday, November 24, 2016, 07:02 PM
August 29, 2005…….Katrina has just made landfall….no one really knows the extent of damage that will be left in her path of destruction…. With her she brings high winds, raging water, and an eerie “unknown”.
August 30, 2005……it’s the morning after….everywhere you look, as far as the eye can see, devastation…..the “unknown” has now become a reality that will be with America for years to come…..
As I now join the many others around the world, watching the events unfold, I am witnessing this disaster that is now so painfully written in my mind and on my heart…I see frightened children; I see the elderly; I see the sick and the cripple….
I see those who enjoyed simple luxuries just a week ago…those who have awakened to find themselves now homeless….no electricity, no water, no home, no job, and the list of “no’s” goes on and on….. All the things that are taken for granted on a daily basis have now become, shall we say, a “thing of the past”, or at least for now it is….
With all of this in mind, I can not help but to find my way to scripture… Already I’m hearing folks say, “why me?”, “why this?”, “why God?”
I find great comfort in Luke 22:31 and 32....“Simon, Simon, satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith will not fail…..”
Here we see that satan has come to Jesus and has "demanded permission" to sift Simon Peter like wheat. This is how I see all these things that are happening now, in our personal lives and in the lives of other believers...we are being "sifted"......pressed "through" tiny holes....squashed, bruised, battered, cut, and yes, sometimes bleeding, but sifted nonetheless...
Where’s the blessing in all of this? Where’s our hope? Where is there something the least bit positive?
Jesus speaking says, “….but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail…”
My friend….it just doesn’t get any better than that! Jesus….God Who came in the flesh, has and IS praying for you, and for me…Why? So that our faith will not fail…and when we come through the sifter, we will be stronger than ever before…..
When will the sifting end? I can’t answer that one, but I do know that I for one am blessed for having gone through each sifter in my life.
Therefore, as we all share in this current “sifting”, let us lay hold of and claim the promise that Jesus IS praying…..
Lord Jesus, I thank You so much for the sifter…..I thank You that while I am ”in” the sifter, You are praying for me….giving me the strength that I need and the encouragement to see it through. As well, with this in mind, I now pray for those people that are experiencing the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina….allow them to understand that You “are” there and allow them the strength to reach up to You… While understanding does not always come, I’m asking that acceptance does..
In Jesus’ Name….Amen
"Nothing comes into the life of a Christianthat is not first sifted through the will of God."
Thursday, November 24, 2016, 06:53 PM
In Scripture, we always see “Andrew” bringing someone to Jesus. In the book of John (1:42), Andrew first brings his own brother “Simon Peter” to Jesus; then as we read on in chapter six, he brings a young lad to Jesus as well. In chapter twelve Andrew is bringing yet some others who’s desire was to see Jesus.
The name “Andrew” means to be “enduring" and/or "brave”, and its no wonder. The anointing of God was visible in Andrew’s life and he not only spent time with Jesus, but he continually was telling others about the long awaited Messiah. This took not only "endurance", but in many instances, bravery.
Considering this, my thoughts are directed to my own relationship with Christ. In what ways am I an “Andrew”? Or perhaps what the question should be, “am I an ‘Andrew’ at all”? When was the last time that I brought someone to meet Jesus? In what ways am I allowing Him to use me in His ministry?
This same question is the one that I am posing to you today. Are you an Andrew? Are you applying the anointing that God has provided for you, to bring someone to meet Jesus? As you examine your own heart, won’t you allow the Holy Spirit the freedom to guide you daily as you “go and tell”….
© LBG Ministries 2001
Wednesday, November 23, 2016, 05:08 PM
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find Me, when ye shall search for Me with all your heart. (KJV)
God showed me this verse at a time in my life when I thought that my life had no purpose. The following is what I have learned:
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you”, saith the Lord.Who is talking to me here? The Lord is…He is speaking to me.
What is He saying? He is telling me that He “thinks of me”, He has plans for me.
What kind of plans? Plans (thoughts) of peace (welfare) and not of evil (calamity); plans for an “expected” end…that means a future and a hope.
Here I see that my life really does have purpose; God has a plan for my life and it’s a good plan. He is telling me that I have a future to look forward to and a hope to cling to.
What must I do? “Then shall ye call upon Me and ye shall go and pray unto Me and I will hearken unto you.” Wow...here is God telling me that if I come to Him and pray then He will listen. Therefore I have a promise to claim…He, the God of all creation, has promise me that if I come to Him and pray, He will listen…..
Last part says: “And ye shall seek me, and find Me, when ye shall search for Me with all your heart. “ Once again, my heart is challenged…my God is telling me that if I earnestly seek Him, then I will find Him (how?), by seeking Him with “all my heart”!
So what have I learned? I have learned that God loves me; He has a plan for my life, thus giving my life a purpose; He has promised me that if I seek Him with all my heart and come to Him in prayer, He will listen to me.
Now, what is God saying to you?
© LBG Ministries 2001
Wednesday, November 23, 2016, 05:03 PM
This morning I rode my horse on the land across from our home. For years I have driven past that same field on my way to work. That same field with cattle grazing and the creek that overflows with every spring rain. I have always been familiar with the houses and the barns; the creeks and the trees. Everything in its place….just as it has always been from my earliest memories until now.
Today I rode to the far back of this land, to the other side of the hills. I came up to a pond and then I saw some buildings that I didn’t recognize. For a moment I had lost my bearings and thought that perhaps I had somehow crossed over to someone else’s land.
The closer I rode to the buildings I soon realized that they were the same buildings that I had know for all these years. I just never saw them from this viewpoint. Everything was the same as it had always been…they had not moved or changed, but “I” had.
Immediately I thought about my relationship with God. He is always the same, He never changes nor does He ever move away from His children. I wondered, ”is my relationship with Jesus so weak that I wouldn’t recognize Him in a way I was not used to seeing Him?” I tend to say that Jesus is like this or like that, but the bottom line is, He is everything.. He does not fit into a mold.
Where do you see Jesus? Do you recognize Him when He is working in your life? Or, do you try to limit His activity by expecting Him to only appear a certain way? Hmmm….I wonder...…would we recognize Jesus if we were to see Him from a different view?
© LBG Ministries 2001