There are 2 character traits that are very important for service to the Lord: humility and submission. Humility about yourself towards others and towards God. Submission first to God and then to each other. Without these character traits, the Apostle Paul said you will be just like a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. All noise. No benefit. If you consider these opposite character traits, it is obvious why pride and arrogance cannot serve the Lord. What motivates you?
It happens to all of us. We have all walked through the slough of despond, a fictional, deep bog in John Bunyan’s allegory The Pilgrim’s Progress, into which the protagonist Christian sinks under the weight of his sins and his sense of guilt for them. When that happens, we need to follow David’s example, and cry out to God to “Restore unto me the joy of your salvation.” (Psalm 51:12)
The 3 requirements for fervent effectual prayer are ask, seek, and knock. The Christian life is an active life, it motivates, and it works. You need to ask the will of God. You need to actively seek the answer. Then, you have to put the answer into action. All 3 of these are required. Don’t expect a godly answer and good results without all three. If you never ask the will of God, but seek everywhere for an answer, who knows what Continue reading 3 requirements for effectual fervent prayer: ask, seek, and knock
Towards the end of the Apostle Peter’s exhortation to the exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, he shares this nugget. The amazing truth and beauty of this passage is somewhat obscured by the King James English, so let’s look at several different translations… Casting all your care  upon him; for he careth  for you. (1 Peter 5:7 KJV)
What did Jesus teach about serving others? Many leaders in the Christian community are identified as Christian “ministers”. This tradition leads many to equate Christian ministry with clergy or leadership over Christian congregations. In scripture, a “minister” is simply a “servant” and “ministry” relates to “service”. How can one be both a servant to, and an authority over, God’s people?
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. (Psalm 23:1) One cannot have it both ways. Either we belong or we don’t. Jesus Himself warned us that there would come a day when many would say, “Lord, in Your name we did many wonderful things,” but He will retort that He never knew us as His own. It is a most serious and sobering thought which should make us search our own hearts and motives and personal relationship to Continue reading Is the LORD really your shepherd?
Almost everyone I know has been through a period in their lives where hopelessness led them to consider suicide as an escape. We know the terrible pain and anguish of soul—brought from the past to torment us in the present—with nothing to be seen in the future but more suffering and more pain. We know how overwhelming suicidal thoughts swirl round and down unstoppable until there is no other possible way out. We survived, we made it, and so can you. Here is how… Continue reading 7 reasons for hope instead of suicide
A real apology, which only comes from a person that is truly sorry, is a request for mercy and forgiveness. It is like the Fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control), which cannot be artificially added on from the outside, but flows out from a pure heart. A real, genuine, sincere apology is a blessing. But, nothing is worse than a faint apology, a false apology, a fake apology, or a non-apology.
Surprisingly, tithing predates the law… Cain and Abel fought over what to tithe (Genesis 4) Abraham gave Melchizedek a tenth of all (Genesis 14:20) The tithe was codified in the Mosaic Ten Commandment Law Covenant between God and the Children Of Israel who were rescued from bondage in Egypt. This law of tithing is very specific. But, there are a ridiculous number of ways to interpret these passages: from not donating anything, excuses for donating too little, reasons for not donating one-tenth, requirements for donations of the Continue reading What about tithing? What is a tithe? Are tithes required?
Sometime life’s trials are too difficult to understand. Sometimes life’s troubles are too hard to bare. Sometimes life’s pain is too much to tolerate. When those times come, look to the LORD… I look up to the mountains— does my help come from there? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth! He will not let you stumble; the one who watches over you will not slumber. Indeed, he who watches over Israel never slumbers or sleeps. The LORD himself Continue reading Count your many blessings and it will surprise you what the Lord has done