Devotions and Lessons
Scripture of the Week:
Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light to my path.
Devotions and Lessons
Scripture of the Week:
Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light to my path.
Brothers and Sisters, when we hear the parables we are sympathetic to who we assume is the main characters who lost something or is the son who was lost. This is normal but today I want to look at another character, the lost son’s brother. He never left his father’s side but he was lost in the heart.
"Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. Your brother has come,' he replied, 'and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.' "The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, 'Look! All these years I've been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!' "'My son,' the father said, 'you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.'" Luke 15:25-32
Faithful But The Heart is Weak in Spirit
The brother seems a bit jealous don’t you think? There are Christians out there who see others get blessings that they think are not deserving of them. These are the ones who do not rejoice over someone else’s positive spiritual experience because they were there and did not receive the same. They cannot rejoice when sinners are saved, because they feel threatened. The Weak Spiritual Heart folks know God and are saved but are jealous of others whose blessings they believe should be their own.
Another type is the religious one who has never truly been saved. There is a difference between being religious and being a Christian. You could be a good, moral person, even attend services regularly and faithfully but never have really put your whole faith in Jesus.
When we first learn of the brother he was working in the field doing what his father told him to do. Being the older brother, he holds the position of first born which means when the father dies he receives two-thirds of his father’s possessions. Since the younger son already received his part, everything belongs to the older son. This means he will also be the head of house, he is blessed. Somehow though it does not seem like enough.
An Example For the Pharisees
When Jesus was telling this parable he directed a lot to how the Pharisees view themselves and how God sees them. The character who best describes the Pharisees in the case is the son in question. They are the privileged and faithful servants of God. The problem was this: they were lost and undone in sin and the Lord knew it! They kept the letter of the Law outwardly, but in their hearts, they longed for sin!
The Pharisees were very religious and knew of the Messiah’s coming but they could not recognize that Jesus was who they were waiting for. Their hearts were hardened so that the plan for salvation could be accomplished. Some did see the light such as Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea, but the rest were still blind. Doing so they accomplished what was written in Isiah 53:3: He was despised and rejected[ by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Are You The Older Brother?
Just as Jesus could look into the heart of the Pharisee and see his lost condition, He can look within your heart and see that you are lost too. All the older brother wanted to do is live it up like the other boy did! But, He can’t, so he gets mad that one who did the very things he wants to do in his heart has been received by the father. You see, you can fool all of us, but you cannot fool Him. You might be good, moral and active in your church and still be lost. Your outward attitudes and actions are a mirror into your heart. What does your heart say about you? You watch people who can only attack others, criticize them and place blame on everyone but themselves. That kind of person has real spiritual issues!
In truth, religion does not equal salvation. Being close to the things of God does not equal being saved by the grace of God. The father praised the elder son for his efforts, and reminded him that everything was already his! In effect, this father was saying, “I value you and our relationship together more than I value your works.” This boy could have enjoyed fellowship with the father anytime he wanted, but he was too wrapped up within his own legalism and narrow-mindedness to realize it. This boy wanted what the father had, but he did not want the father, and he did not want anyone else to have the father either. Religion can make a person just desire works. A personal, trusting relationship with God has more value than any religious deed.
Attending a church does not make you a Christian any more than climbing a tree make you a squirrel, nor does sleeping in a garage makes you a car. You must not depend on who you are or what you have done for your salvation. Works do not save you, salvation comes from the free gift of Grace and full faith in Jesus Christ does.
Brothers and Sisters, examine yourself spiritually. If you find your heart is like the older brother, ask God for forgiveness and repent today. Come home and the Father will embrace you. Seek the relationship the Holy Spirit calls you to.
In God’s Mercy and Grace,
Rob, Servant of God
In Ecclesiastes, the writer discusses many things of the world including wisdom itself only to conclude that it is all vanity, or temporary and worldly things that cannot be taken into the next life. Though he speaks of there being a time for everything under the sun that is just it, under the mortal sun which will pass away.
As God’s creation, we should be able to realize what is right and proper to be doing with our time while remembering that our time is borrowed. Many in this world make the most of it by living of the world only to lose everything material and gain nothing of the Spirit. When someone gains much in the world and cares only for what pleases the individual all the while forgetting his/her origins and their faith, the person becomes lost in self-indulgence.
Let us read what Ecclesiastes 2:1-11 says about “The Vanity of Self-Indulgence”
I said in my heart, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure; enjoy yourself.” But behold, this also was vanity. I said of laughter, “It is mad,” and of pleasure, “What use is it?” I searched with my heart how to cheer my body with wine—my heart still guiding me with wisdom—and how to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was good for the children of man to do under heaven during the few days of their life. I made great works. I built houses and planted vineyards for myself. I made myself gardens and parks, and planted in them all kinds of fruit trees. I made myself pools from which to water the forest of growing trees. I bought male and female slaves, and had slaves who were born in my house. I had also great possessions of herds and flocks, more than any who had been before me in Jerusalem. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the treasure of kings and provinces. I got singers, both men and women, and many concubines, the delight of the sons of man.
So I became great and surpassed all who were before me in Jerusalem. Also my wisdom remained with me. And whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them. I kept my heart from no pleasure, for my heart found pleasure in all my toil, and this was my reward for all my toil. Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.
Self-Indulgence is defined as: indulging one's own desires, passions, whims, etc., especially without restraint. There are many who are well known that suffer from this. Some have found themselves in deep water. Some are going to find themselves totally lost. All the money in the world cannot make one happy. Buying things that give temporary joy will break and get tossed away. Without restraint, many have indulged in sexual experimentation that will only lead to a false happiness, pain, and suffering without knowing true love. Some have taken a hard fall but have found the strength to rise while dropping out of the lime-light.
The problem of self-indulgence is a dangerous path to tread brothers and sisters. As good as it may feel, what use is it when you can no longer enjoy it yourself. Granted some would love to leave an inheritance for their children where they basically want for nothing but what happens when it runs dry or the skeletons of your past catch up with them. Even the smallest silver spoon cannot feed for very long. Though you may accomplish one thing that may help others, if you dabble in self-indulgences you will be more remembered for the bad things you did in life.
Reading through this passage, Solomon talks about the many accomplishments in his life and how he boasted of the riches that God had provided him. All of this is good until it is realized that it all really means nothing when death knocks. These gains turned to loss and trouble pursued his descendants.
Do not indulge in the earthly pleasures gained through work Use them so that others may see God’s grace as you use the spiritual gifts to help others in their time of need. Jesus will take care of you as you have taken care of others. Feed others who hunger, give drink to those who thirst, and cloth those who are naked.
Brothers and sisters, take heed in the Words of Ecclesiastes as it speaks of the dangers of worldly pleasures and our iniquities. Look towards the Father to find the narrow path that leads to life everlasting. Pools of water dry up, trees and plants may wither away, the flesh fails but God’s Word remains. All other things are vanity, and there is nothing gained under the sun.
In God’s Loving Arms,
Rob, Servant of God
There is something very special about the Psalms. The writers of these words reached down into their souls and sang to the Lord their praises to Him as well as their troubles. The ones written by David tell the story of David’s faith, fall, and return. David wrote of God’s Grace, Mercy, and compassion when soothing the soul of King Saul. Psalm 30 sings to us a thankful spirit and a prayer for help in troubled times.
I will extol you, O Lord, for you have drawn me up and have not let my foes rejoice over me.
O Lord my God, I cried to you for help, and you have healed me.
O Lord, you have brought up my soul from Sheol; you restored me to life from among those who go down to the pit.
Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.
As for me, I said in my prosperity, “I shall never be moved.”
By your favor, O Lord, you made my mountain stand strong; you hid your face;
I was dismayed.
To you, O Lord, I cry, and to the Lord I plead for mercy:
“What profit is there in my death, if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise you? Will it tell of your faithfulness?
Hear, O Lord, and be merciful to me! O Lord, be my helper!”
You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have loosed my sackcloth
and clothed me with gladness, that my glory may sing your praise and not be silent.
O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!
Oh how glorious is this Psalm that sings of the saving Grace that God gives freely. He brings us from the depths of our darkness and restores us to His Kingdom. Though He may be disappointed in us when we sin, like a Father He chastises then showers us with His Mercy. When we cry out to Him with a true heart, desiring of His help, He is there to lead us home. In our suffering He brings joy. He wraps us with His arms of Grace. Rise Halleluiahs to the Lord God Almighty and Glorify His Name.
In The Father’s Loving Arms,
Rob, Servant of God
This day and age has so many human and material influences that we forgot our original purpose for our existence. In Genesis we are given specifics on our mission. We are to be fruitful, multiply, and be caretakers of all things on, above, and below the earth. That includes each other. Also, we are to utilize the resources but not to the point of destruction. We have not even followed the basic commands of the first two books.
Made In His Image
What does this mean that we are made in His Image? It is not the physical attributes that we are speaking of because no one has seen the true form of God. Instead, we are given the spiritual attributes that make up the characteristics, values, morals, and ethics to which He holds us to. He set the very first standard of completion relationships being of man and woman. We are separate but equal in the fact that it takes one of each biological gender to procreate and make a new person. That is how we are fruitful and multiply. Children are the future, If we keep killing children, there will be no future us.
We are given moral values that keep us from causing harm to another but we failed there too. This is both physical and mental. Some people have developed a state of mind that causes them to kill another. Some want control and will do anything to get it. When people control the basic material needs, the mental state becomes dependent on those who control them. Some attack the morals through sexual deviance, indoctrinating people into believing all physical sexual desires outside of one male and one female are good and healthy. How many have died from disease or suicide because of this? Too many.
God makes us who we are. His very name is written in our DNA. Every cell, every particle, every atom is unique to each of us. When man begins to meddle in God’s handiwork, bad things can happen.
Worldly Influences Kill Relationships
When God created us, He had a personal relationship with Him. Adam and Eve walked with God until Eve misspoke and the serpent manipulated her into eating of the tree. From that point there were few that walked with God in relational manner. The Bible mentions a few faithful men and women with whom God showed Himself through physical manifestations. Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Job, Samson’s Mother, Elijah, Ezekiel, Daniel and his friends, are just the tip of the iceberg in the Old Testament.
When Jesus was to come on the scene, God presented Himself through His angels to Zechariah, Elizabeth, Mary, and Joseph. Once God’s Word became Incarnate through Jesus, the whole Middle Eastern world could see Him. Through Jesus, God opened the door for personal relationships once again but it didn’t last long. The devil took hold of some men and influenced the world to the point of near destruction.
The worldly influences today come in all shapes and sizes. The devil has such a hold on this world that it is hard to distinguish right thinking from wrong unless you are deep in the Book and Keeping the Word on you heart. These influences reach into our mental states and cause temptation, These temptations, especially the ones that turn to sin are spiritual and physical relationship killers. On one hand you could lose your family, job, and way of life. On the other, you could lose your soul and never see or feel the light of God again.
Do You Live In Fantasy or Reality
The fantastical worlds that are products of some imaginations really can get out of control when they become a lifestyle. Those who know everything about a particular character can take things so far as to believing the fantasy is reality. When all you can talk about is a comic, book, movie, or television/radio show, the fact is that you have neglected God. When fantasy becomes your idol, you are lost to God. I have seen this first hand through some who cosplay so much that they cannot remember their true selves. This is very dangerous and has led to many unhealthy and ungodly acts.
Society has become overly influenced by things not of God that we forget who God has made us to be.
Face Book has opened the opportunity for some to find out what fictional character they most resemble. You can look at this two ways: Find out what traits or gifts you might possess; or start living a life like the character because you want to be more like him or her. Looking at these they are directed mostly to young impressionable children to young adults. This is very wrong.
We live in a time where the rule of Ba’al has returned. Child killings, pedophilia, incest, and other sexual tendencies (the Acronym), have become normal. If you do not agree then maybe you need to reread Exodus and Leviticus, then refresh your mind and heart in the gospel. These temptations and sins are rampant in the influencers of society and our youth are considering their actions and activities as okay to model after. We know better so start putting your foot down. Fortunately we have people in authoritative offices that are trying to get us back on track.
Social Media Killed the Conversation
If you want to reach out to anyone, find them on Face Book, Twitter, Instagram, Snap Chat, and Messenger. There are other apps that are out there that cause temptation and allow sinful behaviors as the norm. What that has done is made people rely on the electronic medium take over simply being truly face to face. Though it does allow to find out how Aunt Bertha is doing 5,000 miles away in Saskatchewan, people will text another who is across from them in a booth rather than looking at the person and using vocal words. Relationships suffer from electronic overuse.
We are meant to be relational beings. With advances in technology, relationships through physical means has become a thing of the past. Personal relationships have faltered and we are not who we are meant to be.
So, Who Are You?
By now I hope you realize that you are a child of the Living God. Made in the Glorious Image of the Divine. He gave us a group of fruits, bread, and drink to nourish us. He is the only one who can save us and bring us to our true home. His Hands molded us, He knows our hearts and can do so many things in our lives if we let Him. He is our Guide, our Father, our Mother, our friend, our Comfort, our Joy, our Judge, our Jury. God is the one who makes the final decision on how we spend eternity. What we do on earth helps dictate our future with or without God. He knows our purpose and gives us the gifts we need to produce the results from our purpose. To God is all Glory, Honor and Power, if you try to take the credit all the time, God may have something for you.
If you are not there but want to be, do you desire to know more about the saving Grace which is extended to us through the sacrifice of God’s Son, Jesus the Messiah. We can help then through follow-up and searching, help you find a group of like-minded believers in your area.
Jesus is Lord
Rob, Servant of God
There are times to speak loudly the Word of the Lord and other times where the best thing is to be quiet and just being there is enough. There are many types of ministering from pulpit, to serving food or handing out clothes. These are great forms of sharing God’s Word but sometimes just your presence speaks God’s Grace, Love, and Mercy in volumes
No Sermon Needed
Job was very happy that his friends decided to be there with him. Their presence was very comforting until one of them began to speak, then it all went downhill from there. Job calls his friends “miserable comforters (Job 16:2)” because they went from comforting to condemning Job for being a sinner. If they had just stayed quiet, God would not have condemned them (Job 42:7-9) and require the one who needed comfort (Job) to be the one who sought forgiveness for his friends in prayer.
The Ministry of Presence is best described as someone who has God in the heart who provides comfort and shares God’s Love, Grace, and Mercy through action or inaction where words may do more harm than good. We have had so many tragedies in the last 40 years both manmade and natural that opened so many heart’s eyes to serve those effected through presence alone and turned many back to God because they sacrificed time and materials to help without question.
Silence Is Golden
Military and civil servant leaders understand the signals that body language can give. An open hand gesture means move in a direction while a closed fist signals a stop. When in close quarters the eye can give direction and warn of the dangers that may lie ahead. A raised hand can mean many things so one must look at the eyes to see whether the hand is about to strike out in anger or the person is taking a protective stance.
The lack of noise coming from one’s mouth plays an integral part in giving comfort. The Psalms and
Proverbs warn us of watching what comes from the tongue and Jesus tells us that what comes out of the mouth is more vile than what goes in. The heart speaks without words. Our thoughts can be presented in so many ways without noise. Our eyes show concern or distain. Our body language can tell others how we are going to present ourselves. Movements of the hand can tell of violent or loving tendencies. To know others without words is to see the self in many lights. Silence is worth its weight in gold.
Prayer Warriors Need Quiet Time Too
There are times when the best prayers are said without uttering a word. In silence, people are forgiven. In silence, situations become clear. In silence, love is shared. In silence, wounds are healed. Prayer Warriors do not have to pray loud for God to hear because He hears the rumblings of our hearts.
What is quiet time? Quiet time is the time for personal reflection and without boasting, giving back to God all things. We boast in our weakness through prayer only to find that God has provided the strength we need to make it through the day.
We need to spend time sharing with one another but part of that is truly just being there. Many relationships are built on the presence of others and the greatest relationships are built in the presence of God. The next time someone says they need someone to talk to, don’t be Job’s friends, sit and listen without condemnation or judgement. Quietly share Christ. Be the Good Samaritan and speak through actions of caring and compassion. Be faithful providers of God’s Word.
Through God’s Love, Grace, and Mercy,
Rob, Servant of God
Something that the past few generations have not truly shown one another is God’s Grace. Yes there are many out there who know of God’s Grace but when it comes right down to it, do we really show it and share it with others? We hear about acts of generosity and kindness and see pictures and videos that go viral but still God’s Grace somehow is missed. All should be affected in one way shape or form by these acts but so many hearts have been hardened that they just scroll by them. But God’s Grace still abounds in this dark time, God’s Grace still wins.
Are You Dependent on His Grace
Just because we believe and have faith in God does not mean we are fully dependent on His Grace. Some of best Christians I know still have issues giving everything over to God. Being dependent on God’s Grace means that everything we do.
“If God wants you to do something, he'll make it possible for you to do it, but the grace he provides comes only with the task and cannot be stockpiled beforehand. We are dependent on him from hour to hour, and the greater our awareness of this fact, the less likely we are to faint or fail in a crisis.” -Louis Cassels (1922-1974)
"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong." 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16
So why is it difficult to be fully dependent on God? The current state of the world is dependent on things only of this world. Without being part of the status quo makes for difficult living. People are so dependent on a piece of small green and black inked paper that can degrade, by ripped, burned, tossed away, or be stored away for a rainy day. God is not susceptible to those situations. You either believe or you don’t. If you do believe, do you follow the teaching of all Scripture or do you only accept what you think applies to your idealisms? Remember, Jesus said that we cannot serve God and mammon. Are you filled with the Spirit or do you rely on material things for a fully satisfied life?
But We Are Not Under The Law?..
This is a statement that has been argued for many years. It was by God’s Grace and Mercy that He gave the Israelites the Ten Commandments. Jews were the first to receive the gospel which was foretold in Scripture. Jesus did not abolish the Law but saved us from the penalties of our sin. We are still obligated to follow the Rule of God’s Law. Think about it, if Jesus abolished the Law, everyone’s sinful nature would rule the world and we would have already wiped our existence off the earth.
It was through the Grace and Mercy of God that He sent His Word to us in the form of the Suffering Servant, Jesus of Nazareth. His Mission was to first correct the Word which was perverted and corrupted by men who desired power. His statement was written in His Blood which was poured out on the earth to save us from permanent separation from God.
Paul never stated we are to ignore God’s Law but to be renewed by it through living as Jesus taught us to live. Since Jesus is the Word made Flesh, the teachings had their basis on the Ten Commandments and the moral laws. He quoted the Old Testament (OT) continuously and showed that the OT told of His arrival and mission. Also we should not put the OT aside and only rely on the New. R. W. Barbour explains this below:
“He who has not felt what sin is in the Old Testament knows little what grace is in the New. He who has not trembled in Moses, and wept in David, and wondered in Isaiah will rejoice little in Matthew, rest little in John. He who has not suffered under the Law will scarcely hear the glad sound of the gospel.” -R. W. Barbour (1900- ?)
Without knowing what sin is and the consequences that come from disobedience, we would not know Grace.
God’s Grace is Free
God desires to rebuild His relationship with us so He freely gives us His Grace and Mercy. He forgives us, saves us, grants us a place in the Kingdom unconditionally. All He asks for is our trust , love, obedience, and sharing Him with the world. We will never be worthy of His Grace. It is because of the Blood of the perfect innocent sacrifice of God’s Son, Jesus, that we are forgiven. Jesus paid the price and defeated death (separation from God) causing the gates to open so we can have the personal relationship with God once again.
Brothers and Sisters it is time to do our part in the Great Commission now more than ever before. Be dependent on His Grace and He will provide and protect you. The tasks given will be successful in His embrace.
In God’s Grace and Mercy
Rob, Servant of God
What is it that helps you make it through the day. Is it that first morning cup of coffee or other caffeinated beverage? Is it that motivational speaker on the radio or television that tells you first thing that you are a good person? Do you rely only upon worldly things to give you that jump start and bring joy? Or do you just get up and go hoping that others whom you think you trust will help get you through the day? What was missing in all those situations? The Cup of Salvation and the Bread of Life.
Placing your hope, trust, and life, in the hands of others without first giving all things to God is a very dangerous thing. Without God you risk placing yourself in the hands of someone who may be out to harm you mentally or physically. The person may put you in a situation where there is no escape.
Here is what Adonai says:
“A curse on the person who trusts in humans, who relies on merely human strength, whose heart turns away from Adonai. He will be like a tamarisk in the ‘Aravah —when relief comes, it is unaffected; for it lives in the sun baked desert, in salty, uninhabited land.
Blessed is the man who trusts in Adonai; Adonai will be his security. He will be like a tree planted near water; it spreads out its roots by the river; it does not notice when heat comes; and its foliage is luxuriant; it is not anxious in a year of drought but keeps on yielding fruit.
“The heart is more deceitful than anything else and mortally sick. Who can fathom it?
I, Adonai, search the heart; I test inner motivations; in order to give to everyone
what his actions and conduct deserve.” Jeremiah 17:5-10
This is not saying that trust in our fellow man is bad. It is a warning that trusting someone who does not trust in God may result in bad things happening.
Reliance On God Will Save You
Scripture is full of stories of people who relied on God and were saved from certain fates. Joseph Son of Jacob had faith that God would use his situation for good. He saved many during a famine. David killed Goliath because his faith gave him a keen eye and a strong hand. He became a king. Jeremiah was tossed into a cistern. The truth of God he spoke set him free. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were saved from a furnace. Daniel and the lion’s den. And the list goes on and on.
Yet People Still Deny God Exists
How can we deny God with all those people who had a relationship of trust in a God they could not see? Many people will say they are just myths and legends. Some claim disbelief because there is no evidence any of it is true (um, archeological findings is proof). There are too many physical discoveries coming to light.
We Rely Too Much On Worldly Things
This day and age has seen less and less people believing in God. Instead they put their trust in physical things that other people have made. The idol of money as the only means of survival is very strong and has turned many hearts away from God. Money cannot truly make a person happy, in fact, money will only bring sadness. It is a temporary joy because it gives only physical pleasures. The need for money is a disease that people think the only cure is to get more money. Material things are good for survival of the body but too much can destroy the soul.
How sad it is to see lives destroyed when the money stops coming in and they do not know how to survive. The survival skills of the past have been lost because of self-reliance on an idol instead of reliance on God. Technology has replaced personal relationships as we have become slaves to electronic devices. The youth have become so engrossed with the happenings of others and desiring to be someone or something else that they forget who they themselves are.
The Lawless One Is Present
The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12
Forgetting your true self, the one that God created, and believing the lies told in the world brings this passage to life.
So many are deceived by the lie that was caused by the depraved mind of sexually immoral men that the whole world is in chaos. God’s Law has been perverted to a point where many think the opposite of God’s Law is the new good. It is not just the sexually immoral but all those who deny the Ten Commandments, the morality laws, values, and ethics that are found in the Tanakh. These are people who will speak Scriptures taking them out of context to fit their own desires.
What Do We Do?
As Christ followers we are to abide by His teachings, which include adherence to the Laws of God, which include the Ten Commandments and morality laws. Because we are not born Jewish we do not have to adhere to the dietary laws. Jesus also removed the stoning, and other major punishments by men. When we ignore these things, we are given into sin and become a slave to the lawless one.
We are to love those who persecute us and bring hope to the hopeless. Do not judge those who believe the falsehoods but treat them with kindness and compassion so they may see the truth.
May God’s Love, Grace, and Mercy shine upon you,
Rob, Servant of God
When Jesus talked about building on sand versus building on stone I never thought I would be put up to the challenge of building using stone and sand in a spot where sand is on top of clay on top of sand on top of clay. Of course Jesus was actually talking about faith in Him and it is that faith in Him that has encouraged this ministry to be built. Using some bought materials and the natural materials found on the property, God has given the team the knowledge and understanding to be able to place things in the right spots so that we can glorify God.
As structures are built, so are relationships. As relationships are built the Kingdom is expanded. As God's Kingdom is raised, Grace unfolds. His Grace is sufficient for us as we work share the Word with the world and defeat the Adversary's hold over us.
Please continue to pray for the ministry as we put ourselves third to God and others.
Working with others means that you are to develop a team effort to get things done. Every level of work needs this in order to be successful. There are some out there that know this but choose to want to stand out above the crowd and be noticed. You know, the “Look at me” type. When a person becomes obsessed with self-success they lose the team which makes for an unhealthy workplace because all that person wants to see is others faults and covers their own.
When this person only sees the faults and is in a position of leadership, they hang those faults over the subordinates head and the workplace can become very hostile. It is very difficult to stay humble for so long and take the abuse. The Father does not want us to stoop to his or her level but at the same time explain the judgmental attitude that this person has developed. Sometimes it is the hardest thing to do but it must be done. Scriptures tell us to avoid confrontation unless absolutely necessary. So how do you deal with this type of person?
How do we handle a person that only sees the faults in others?
Continue to do the job as prescribed and watch the person’s attitude towards others. Remember this person has been corrupted through his/her own faults and watch for a pattern. When confronted by the person and he/she starts in on you, ask them to stop then tell the person in a kind manner that you know your own faults and you do not need to be reminded of them. Try to get the person to recognize his/her own faults without chiding or being judgmental yourself. Show kindness yet be stern and hold your position. If this persists then take it higher.
It helps to get others in a room and air out things in a way that does not cause harm. Work with each other. Once the laundry is set out to dry, the team can develop a closer relationship and help each other work through their weaknesses, building them up to be strengths.
Find Strength in Our Weakness
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Strength comes from weakness. This does not mean that we are to point out another’s weakness, instead share a weakness in order to find strength in overcoming it. The Grace of God, which is sufficient for us, is there to help us work through it and strengthen us so our weakness becomes a strength.
Yet still, some people consider these weaknesses as faults and will try to use them against us. If we boast about our weaknesses as Paul did then those weaknesses or faults become where we find strength and can win over the one who tries to extort these faults to their advantage.
Isn’t it funny how God works sometimes. The things that humans find as faults are strengths in God’s eyes. We find joy in suffering, not in a sadistic way but we understand that the suffering is only a temporary thing because God uses the weak and suffering to show His power through us when we still succeed even in our failures. This life gives us the lessons we need to be ready for the next. God’s Grace and Mercy covers us and gives us hope for a future of peace in the next.
Brothers and Sisters, build up those around you through sharing where you are weakest and watch relationships grow. One thing a healthy relationship is built on encouraging one another to overcome our weaknesses by working through them. We cannot do it alone. I want to encourage and challenge you to opening up more to those who are closest to you so a deeper relationship is built on an understanding of each other and how working together brings strength in adversity. This is another example of God working through us and expanding His Kingdom on earth.
In His Grace and Merciful Loving Arms,
Rob, Servant of God
The messages on the blogs written on this page are within biblical adherence. Though the Scriptures listed in the blogs are directly from the Bible and other related religious writings the explanations and interpretations are in line with Biblical thinking as it relates to today’s world. The use of historical facts are to assist in the validity of the writings. The main writer of this blog site is an Ordained minister in one denomination though the views are related to all denominations so if something is said that does not fall in line with your denominational background, pray for personal discernment and understanding.