Jesus Christ

May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace. (NLT) -Romans 1:7
Some days we need just a bit more grace and a bit more peace than others. Busyness, drama, and life circumstances pull out every last ounce of patience. By the end of the day, it feels like we are just barely hanging on. When you feel your patience wearing thin, step away. Get a moment of distance to recenter yourself around Christ. He will give you the grace and patience you are seeking to give to others.
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Romans 8:30 Whom He justified, them He also glorified.

Here is a precious truth for thee, believer. Thou mayest be poor, or in suffering, or unknown, but for thine encouragement take a review of thy “calling” and the consequences that flow from it, and especially that blessed result here spoken of. As surely as thou art God’s child today, so surely shall all thy trials soon be at an end, and thou shalt be rich to all the intents of bliss. Wait awhile, and that weary head shall wear the crown of glory, and that hand of labour shall grasp the palm-branch of victory. Lament not thy troubles, but rather rejoice that ere long thou wilt be where “there shall be neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain.” The chariots of fire are at thy door, and a moment will suffice to bear thee to the glorified. The everlasting song is almost on thy lip. The portals of heaven stand open for thee. Think not that thou canst fail of entering into rest. If He hath called thee, nothing can divide thee from His love. Distress cannot sever the bond; the fire of persecution cannot burn the link; the hammer of hell cannot break the chain. Thou art secure; that voice which called thee at first, shall call thee yet again from earth to heaven, from death’s dark gloom to immortality’s unuttered splendours. Rest assured, the heart of Him who has justified thee beats with infinite love towards thee. Thou shalt soon be with the glorified, where thy portion is; thou art only waiting here to be made meet for the inheritance, and that done, the wings of angels shall waft thee far away, to the mount of peace, and joy, and blessedness, where,

“Far from a world of grief and sin,

With God eternally shut in,”

thou shalt rest for ever and ever.

“GOD IS FOR ME!”

“If God is for us, who can be against us?”  Ro 8:31 NIV

The question isn’t simply, “Who can be against us?” That’s an easy one to answer: disease, inflation, corruption, exhaustion, calamities, and fears. The real question is, “If God is for us…?” Let’s read these words slowly, placing emphasis on each of them: (1) God is for you. Your parents may have forgotten you, your teachers may have neglected you, your siblings may be ashamed of you, but within reach of your prayers is the Maker of the oceans: God! (2) God is for you. Not “maybe,” or “has been,” or “would be if,” but “is”! God is for you today, at this minute, as you read this sentence. No need to wait in line and come back tomorrow. He’s with you. He couldn’t be closer to you than He is at this second. His loyalty won’t increase if you’re better, nor lessen if you’re worse. He is for you. (3) God is for you. Are you too tired to continue? He’ll carry you. Are you too discouraged to fight? He’ll fight for you. Turn to the sidelines; that’s God cheering you on. Look past the finish line; that’s God applauding your steps. (4) God is for you. If God had a calendar, your birthday would be circled on it. If He had a car, your name would be on the bumper. If there’s a tree in heaven, He’s carved your name on the bark. We already know He has a tattoo, and we know what it says: “I have written your name on my hand” (Isa 49:16 NCV). So when you get up each morning look in the mirror and tell yourself, “God is for me!”

One’s Life

There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. (NLT) -John 15:13
To love is to sacrifice for another person’s well being. What greater sacrifice is there than to lose your life serving, protecting, and defending those you love? Then there are those who sacrifice their lives not even knowing who it is they are sacrificing their lives for. Take a moment today and honor those who have given up their lives for our country. Remember them in prayer and acknowledge their greatest sacrifice.
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2 Samuel 9:13 So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king’s table; and was lame on both his feet.

Mephibosheth was no great ornament to a royal table, yet he had a continual place at David’s board, because the king could see in his face the features of the beloved Jonathan. Like Mephibosheth, we may cry unto the King of Glory, “What is Thy servant, that Thou shouldst look upon such a dead dog as I am?” but still the Lord indulges us with most familiar intercourse with Himself, because He sees in our countenances the remembrance of His dearly-beloved Jesus. The Lord’s people are dear for another’s sake. Such is the love which the Father bears to His only begotten, that for His sake He raises His lowly brethren from poverty and banishment, to courtly companionship, noble rank, and royal provision. Their deformity shall not rob them of their privileges. Lameness is no bar to sonship; the cripple is as much the heir as if he could run like Asahel. Our right does not limp, though our might may. A king’s table is a noble hiding-place for lame legs, and at the gospel feast we learn to glory in infirmities, because the power of Christ resteth upon us. Yet grievous disability may mar the persons of the best-loved saints. Here is one feasted by David, and yet so lame in both his feet that he could not go up with the king when he fled from the city, and was therefore maligned and injured by his servant Ziba. Saints whose faith is weak, and whose knowledge is slender, are great losers; they are exposed to many enemies, and cannot follow the king whithersoever he goeth. This disease frequently arises from falls. Bad nursing in their spiritual infancy often causes converts to fall into a despondency from which they never recover, and sin in other cases brings broken bones. Lord, help the lame to leap like an hart, and satisfy all Thy people with the bread of Thy table!

Hope for a Better Tomorrow

“‘For this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Houses, fields and vineyards will again be bought in this land.’” — Jeremiah 32:15

The Torah portion for this week is Behar, which means “on the mountain,” from Leviticus 25:1–26:2, and the Haftorah is from Jeremiah 32:6–22.

This week’s Torah reading is called Behar, meaning “on the mountain.” There are times in our lives when we stand “on the mountain.” We have reached the summit, we feel on top of the world, full of joy and inspiration. This is a fitting title for a portion that discusses the joyous once-in-every-50-years event called the Year of Jubilee.

In contrast, this week’s Haftorah reading from the book of Jeremiah begins with the prophet in the depths of prison. Jeremiah had been prophesying about Israel’s pending fall to the Babylonians. King Zedekiah of Israel didn’t care for that message, so he threw Jeremiah into prison. There, confined and restrained, Jeremiah received a most surprising prophecy.

God instructed Jeremiah to buy land in Israel, specifically a field in a place called Anathoth that was once owned by Jeremiah’s cousin. The cousin had fallen on hard times and was forced to sell the land, so he came to Jeremiah, as God had foretold, and asked Jeremiah to purchase it. As God had commanded him, Jeremiah bought the field and had the transaction sealed and preserved in the ground.

From the perspective of an outsider, this transaction appeared to be a very foolish thing for Jeremiah to do. Here he was in prison with no hope of being released, and he bought land somewhere that he might never see. On top of that, Jeremiah knew that Israel was about to be conquered. He knew that the entire nation would be exiled. Yet, Jeremiah invested in Israeli real estate. “For this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Houses, fields and vineyards will again be bought in this land.”

Jeremiah’s act was one of great faith and was meant to instill faith in all Israel. God wanted His people to know that no matter how bad things appeared to be, the present situation was not their final destination. Things would turn around, and Israel would see better days.

This is a powerful message for us today, especially for those who are going through particularly challenging times. Sometimes it feels like we are confined and restricted It could be health problems, financial constraints, or a difficult relationship with someone at home or at work.

But God wants us to know that we will see better days. Like Jeremiah, we are to plan for a brighter future because no challenge lasts forever, and a new day will dawn.

Friends, know today that our current situations will change for the better – both for us as individuals and for humanity as a whole. Have faith that a better day is dawning, and, with the help of God, we shall see it.

RECOVERING FROM DIVORCE (3)

“When there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping.”  Ro 4:18 NLT

Let’s examine the last three stages involved in recovering from a divorce. Stage Five is acceptance. Yes, acceptance can and eventually does come! And when it does, sometimes you’ll feel a twinge of guilt for not feeling depressed and sad any more. What’s happening? You’ve stopped fighting. The war within has settled down and you’ve begun to experience peace. And it’s God’s peace that transcends human understanding (See Php 4:7). Stage Six is hope. “When there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping…In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises” (Ro 4:18, 20-21 NLT). Something inside you rises up and says, “I will live again, and I will love again. My life is not over.” This is when purpose is rediscovered, new friendships develop, and you start to grow stronger. Emotionally you age fast—and it becomes an advantage. Stage Seven is fulfillment. You say like David: “I will not die; instead, I will live to tell what the Lord has done” (Ps 118:17 NLT). Whether it’s a new relationship, another career, or a particular achievement, God will see to it that you find fulfillment again. This is the place where complaining is never heard because you no longer need to rehearse old memories of failure or betrayal. The God who said, “Behold, I make all things new” (Rev 21:5 NKJV), is giving you a new future, and you refuse to trade it for the pain of your past