Thursday, June 30, 2011

Judge Not…

Luke 6:35-37  But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind to the unthankful and to the evil.  Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.   Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:

Matthew 7:3, Luke 6:41  And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

Rev 12:10  And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, who accused them before our God day and night.  Those verses cover several things I’ve been thinking about, recently.  And I thought I’d share that today.


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Life Comes from the Fear of the Lord

Here's another from Todd Parsons:

The fear of the Lord tends to life: he that has it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil. -- Proverbs19:23. 

"The fear of the Lord", a man that presents himself before the presence of the Lord.  With this thought I am picturing Esther standing before the king in the book of Esther. When we present ourselves to the Lord it tends to life when we recognize that death and life are in the power of His tongue... It is in the power of His tongue more than in the power of my/our tongue, Pr.18:21. I submit to His authority. The Lord will say to the humble, "LIVE!" Here he that has it, "Life from the Lord", shall abide satisfied... Whether your shoes are Esther's or Mordecai's, you shall not be visited with evil, for no evil can stand in the presence of the Lord. There was no place found for them, Rev.19:11-15.  The Lord, will profess to have never known them and by His mouth's words they will have to depart from His presence, Mat.7:23. Evil will remain in eternal insecurity and they that stand with the Lord will abide eternally secure... Thanks be to the Lord we "are"saved and "are" His!

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Some great thoughts there.  We're working on some fresh thoughts from God to post here as well as some ministry things.  Which is why we're a little behind in getting back here.  Our International Convention was great.  Had some time of fellowship with lots of missionaries and pastors.  And some seed thoughts for here.

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Please continue to pray for Dana and her family, Scott, Russ, Columbia, Jimmy and Betty, Curtis, Peggy, Joyce, and Libby.  There's also Mindy.  Don't forget anyone else God lays on your heart.  There are always special people that God wants us to consider in prayer. And I'll add myself to the list, as I expand some ministry responsibilities.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Power and Anointing

Another gem from Todd Parsons:

"The power of God coming from our lives is in direct relation to our communion with God", John "Praying" Hyde. Who God is, is manifest though us knowing Him. The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: You Lord, maintain my lot, Ps,16:5... How full do we desire our cup to be filled? With the Lord's portion, it can be overflowing, and that greater than Victoria Falls and never ending... Fill our cups Lord, and let them overflow that people around us may get soaked with your love, that they may be changed as they see Your goodness and choose to be led by You. the Good Shepherd...

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Our convention has been truly awesome, this year.  The last session is this evening and includes several ordinations.  We've had the blessing of spending time with a number of missionaries who haven't had the finances to visit for awhile.  Pastor Stambovsky's message, last night, focused around the blessing that God gives us that, even if we don't immediately recall names, God allows us to always remember the faces.  And we've been blessed by the joy of being in the presence of such a multitude of spiritually rich faces.  And saddened by the faces that haven't been here, this year.  But we'll continue to remember all the faces with deep love and affection.

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Continue to pray for Dana and her family, Scott, Russ, Columbia, Jimmy and Betty, Curtis, Peggy, Joyce, and Libby.  And anyone else God lays on your heart.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Our Father, Our Glory

Today, enjoy a guest post from Todd Parsons, one of the great blessings in the Body of Christ.

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As a man that is older than what a child is considered in our minds to be, it is often not easy to see my self as a child. The Lord Jesus said, for us to see the kingdom of heaven, though, we need to become as a child. To have child like faith... I see children and I know I marvel at their trusting inocence... Mattew 6, we see the Lord teaching the disciples how to pray, "Our Father who is in heaven". He also continues and says for us to take no thought... for our Father in heaven knows what we have need of... He also teaches us there what to focus on and seek... In another place the Lord says to Martha, who is so concerned about seemingly needful things, "one thing is needful and Mary has chosen it, it shall not be taken from her"... Proverbs17:6b says,"and the glory of children are their fathers". Do I include myself to be one of these children still and do I look to the Lord in heaven as my Father? For He... is... my glory...

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Our Convention is as always, a great spiritual time, If you can make it, it's at 6025 Moravia Park Drive, Baltimore, MD 21206. There's a fee for the sessions, but fellowship is free. And there's lots of good international food.

We’re continuing in prayer for Dana and her family, Scott. And we’re still praying for Russ, Columbia, Jimmy and Betty. Curtis, Peggy, Joyce, and Libby. And their families. And, of course, our International Convention.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Our Father is in Heaven....

First, an update. Dana was put on our prayer list because her dad had been close to death and didn’t know the Lord. Well her dad passed on, but not before accepting Christ into his heart. Dana, her mom and sister are having a memorial service for the family, some of whom still don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus. We need to be praying for emotional strength and for salvations. And her mom asked her to visit the following weekend, which could be another time emotions are stretched. So, lots to still be praying for, there.
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I’ve mentioned our International Convention. The first session starts tonight at 7pm, here in Baltimore. It’s a great time to refill spiritual fuel tanks, have great fellowship, be built up in all the things God is doing all over the world. I’ll be spending a lot of my week there. I’m not sure, yet, how my schedule is going to be. But I have a couple of thoughts for keeping the edification coming.
One of those thoughts is a gentleman I call one of my spiritual secret weapons. His name is Todd Parsons, he’s a graduate of the same Bible college I attended. His job (and, to a point) his calling is to be a mechanic. He has a small group he emails brief meditations to and I’m fortunate to be included in that group. They’re not long like a devotional, but more of a seed thought to get each of us thinking further with God Which is why I call him my spiritual secret weapon, And everyone needs a spiritual secret weapon to help us grow in Christ. If you look around, you just might find one of your own at your church. Anyway, with permission, I may be sharing some of Todd’s gems from time to time. The next section is one of those.
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Our Father is in Heaven and we’re on the earth. Let God be true and every man a liar. His name is holy and we’re not. Proverbs 1:23, “Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit to you, I will make known to you my words.” We walk in darkness, yet Proverbs 2:6 says, “For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.” There is light for our path under our Father's dominion. He did not intend for us to be blinded... Pr.1:33, Hearken...
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Add Scott to our list. We’re continuing in prayer for Dana and her family. And we’re still praying for Russ, Columbia, Jimmy and Betty. Curtis, Peggy, Joyce, and Libby. And their families. And, of course, our International Convention. Thanks for the prayers and blessings.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Who’s Your Daddy, Now?

Matthew 6:9  After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.

John 8:44a  Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.

Happy Fathers’ Day!  Having a great dad is truly a blessing.  And having a not so great dad may not necessarily be the curse we assume it to be.  Think about today’s title.  The phrase is a slang phrase that doesn’t seem to have any good intent.  Whether it be in sports or in life, the idea is that one person is overpowering another, forcing them into submission. It expresses a worldly attitude that’s growing in popularity.  Not a very pretty picture of “daddy”.  So, let’s think with God on this one and look at the contrast in today’s verses.


Friday, June 17, 2011

Who’s Next?

Matthew 10:16-17  Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.  But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues;

Those verses hold some interesting thoughts.  As do the articles that brought those verses to mind.  Wednesday, John Piper did an interview with Don Carson and Tim Keller on pastoral succession.  That discussion can be found on video at http://bit.ly/jFyMO0.  Then, Thursday, Pastor Mark Driscoll wrote a post about 10 things to keep in mind when putting together a leadership team.  That one’s at http://ow.ly/5jChe.  Awhile back, the church I belong to went through a bit of a succession crisis, with resulting changes in staffing and leadership.  So, the two articles, only a day apart, served to remind me of the situation.  And some lessons that can be learned.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

“Wherever you are, be all there.”

It was character that got us out of bed, commitment that moved us into action, and discipline that enabled us to follow through. - Zig Ziglar

Colossians 1:10  That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;


Monday, June 13, 2011

And You Are….?

Galatians 2:20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

By now, I think every living American has seen the commercial where the woman comes into dining room with lots of boxes of food and hollers out, “McDonald’s!!!”.  And by the time she turns around,  people are at the dining table ready to eat. The original version of the commercial was longer.  It cut to the next scene where everyone is at the table eating and the woman notices an obviously out of place oriental gentleman, asking him, “And you are?”.  Because he wasn’t recognized as part of the family.  Another way of saying, “You don’t belong here.  Why are you eating my food?”.  But, on a spiritual level, does that really work anymore?  What’s “out of place”?  Who’s “out of place”?  What’s your “And you are….?”?


Saturday, June 11, 2011

It’s June 11, 2011

That sounds downright official.  But it’s no more so than any given week’s randomness.  So, let’s get to it.


Friday, June 10, 2011

Is It Just Me and God?

1Co 12:14-19  For the body is not one member, but many.  If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?  And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?  If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?  But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.   And if they were all one member, where were the body?


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Who's Your Vocal Coach?

Col 3:14-17  And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.   And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.   Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.   And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. 

Every once in awhile, I like to watch one of the entertainment reality shows.  Last night, I watched a show called the Voice.  It was loaded with talent!  Each of the judges, besides judging, was also a coach for their own team of hopefuls.  That's very much like the reality of the music business.  Even if someone is a star, there are people still advising, etc. to make sure the star does the best job of grabbing the audience.  And the judge/coaches built up each hopeful in what they did well and did their best to strip them of the things that weren't going to work for them.  And that made me think of those verses in Colossians 


Saturday, June 4, 2011

This Week's Miscellany

I belong to a ministry where, in order to keep most of the tithes and offerings going toward actual ministry, many of us put in whatever time we can at the church for free and work elsewhere in order to support ourselves.  A lot of what I do in the church involves talking to people on the phone.  And, you guessed it, my job has me on the phone with people.  Today I got the privilege of speaking with a wonderful couple named Jimmy and Betty who I promised we'd include in our prayer list here.  Betty said she was going through some health issues.  And her husband Jimmy is dealing with a second bout with cancer.  They're beautiful believers who appreciate our prayers.


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

No Free Will?

Today's one of those days when we hit a couple of short topics.  But they'll get us thinking!

First of all, a praise report! After some really serious medical stuff, Joyce went home from the hospital Monday! A very rapid recovery! Thanks for all the prayers.