Ready for Jesus

Did you ever plan for a certain event in your life that in the end didn’t turn out the way you expected?  Sometimes, even after careful preparation and a detailed calculation of every possible scenario, our plans fall apart and chaos ensues.  These experiences are usually great lessons and tend to better prepare us for our next important event.

The most important event ever, for each and every one of us, will be the return of Jesus.  As followers of Jesus, our salvation is secure; however, we all still need to stand before Jesus and account for the choices we’ve made in our life.

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”  2 Corinthians 5:10 (NASB)

I’m confident you’re doing the best you can do with the circumstance in which you currently reside.  I trust that as a follower of Jesus, you live each day with a love for God and a love for your neighbor, while at the same time doing your best to fight off the attacks of the enemy.  Jesus knows what’s in your heart, and that is by far the most important aspect of who you are in his view. Nevertheless, we all will need to stand before him and make an accounting of our lives.  This may happen today, next week, or next month – the precise date and time is unknown – what’s important is that we are ready.  Are you ready?  Are you ready to stand in the presence of Jesus and explain your life?

“Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming. But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. For this reason you also must be ready; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will.”  Matthew 24:42-44 (NASB)

I want to encourage you to give this proposition some serious thought.  Regardless of who you are – Jesus is coming.  Are you going to be caught unprepared?  Are you going to wish you had more time?  Will you regret the effort you gave to following the teachings of Jesus?  Or will you be confident and secure in the presence of our Lord and Savior?

If Jesus is coming tomorrow…

If you had an absolutely confirmed message from God that Jesus is coming tomorrow, what would you do?  My first thought is to get on my knees and pray for guidance.  Obviously, there wouldn’t be enough time to improve how I’ve lived my life, how I’ve served God by serving others, or how I’ve worshiped God; however, there would be enough time to soften my heart and prepare to humble myself in his presence.  Perhaps, my best course of action would be to stop thinking about myself and immediately help others prepare for his return by sharing the gospel with those who have yet to receive salvation.

If Jesus is coming next week…

What about if you had an absolutely confirmed message from God that Jesus is coming next week, what would you do?  In this scenario we actually have some room to make changes in our life, but is that necessary?  We can’t fool Jesus into believing any changes we make are more than a few days old.  Again, it may be more important for us to see the gravity of the moment as an opportunity to help others see the light.

If Jesus is coming next month…

So what if you had an absolutely confirmed message from God that Jesus is coming next month, what would you do?  Thirty days is actually quite a lot of time to do some honest soul searching and redirect your life in a significant way.  Knowing that Jesus is on his way in the next few weeks will bolster our strength to stand against the schemes of the devil.  We can stop listening to the enemy telling us we can’t, and move obstacles out of the way that allow us to serve God by serving others in a major way.

If Jesus is coming next year…

Now consider what you’d do if you had an absolutely confirmed message from God that Jesus is coming next year.  There is plenty of time in the course of a year to completely change your life.  Of course, if we are true followers of Jesus that shouldn’t be necessary. The primary commandments of Jesus to love God and love our neighbor, should already be at the top of our list.  Typically, what might be our biggest need for change is likely our relationship with this world.  When we have an absolutely confirmed message from God that Jesus is on his way, we can stop bending our values to fit in to what is essentially the enemy’s world.  We may need to reevaluate how we earn money, how we worship, how we help others.  I’m fairly certain that if I knew for sure I would stand face-to-face with Jesus in a year, I would dramatically change my life.  I would approach the deception and distractions of the enemy in a completely different way and I would far more aggressively reach out to others in need.

How Much Time Do We Have?

I honestly don’t think we have any time at all.  If changes are needed, they need to happen right now.  Jesus is coming – that’s certain.  As true believers we already have power to overcome the devil – that’s well-established.  There is no excuse for us to give less than 100% of ourselves to Jesus.  The only thing in question is how our individual lives are best integrated into God’s grand plan.  Where you are at in your life and the path you are currently following may be precisely where you need to be.  Only you know the true contents of your heart.  Are you ready for Jesus?

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Where Are You Going

Where are you going

Where Are You Going?

Life is a journey.  We all start somewhere determined by our parents and where we end up is usually a complicated process that involves many different people and several starts and stops.  Depending on how old you are, you likely can look back a few years or a few decades and see those moments when you felt like you made a wrong turn and needed to change course.  As a result, where you believe you’re going right now may be completely different than where you thought you were going in the past.  Ultimately, those who are followers of Jesus have the same destination in mind – the kingdom of heaven.

As believers our final destination has already been determined, but we still need to travel through this life.  Our goal in this journey is not to get distracted or misguided.  Along the way there will be many who will tell believers that the kingdom of heaven is an ancient myth.  They will say that Jesus made his promise to return and establish his kingdom over two thousand years ago and nothing has changed.  If we let these mockers disrupt our progress, we are falling victim to the enemy’s trap.

“Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.”  2 Peter 3:3-4 (NASB)

Time has a way of wearing away proper thinking.  This is why certain salesmen will develop a long sales pitch.  They know that over time you will drop your defenses and allow them to close the deal.  We can’t let that happen on our journey.  Jesus is coming.  There’s no doubt about that.  Jesus is not dragging his feet; he’s allowing us time to do the work he has assigned to us.  We’re not waiting for Jesus, he’s waiting on us.

“But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”  2 Peter 3:8-9 (NASB)

Our mission assigned by Jesus in this journey is to share the gospel and bring everyone with us along the way.  Jesus wants “all to come to repentance.”  We accomplish this goal by loving God with all our heart and loving our neighbor as we love ourselves.  It is the love of God that provides us with our salvation.  When we share that love with others, we point them toward their own salvation and a chance to receive the righteousness that God’s grace provides.

“But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.”  2 Peter 3:13 (NASB)

The enemy has spent the last two thousand years developing a complex web of deception intended to misguide followers of Jesus as well as those traveling without Jesus.  Part of our mission as believers is to find the lost and point them in the right direction.  We can only do that if we are certain about the path we are traveling.  We are safest when we stay in the Word of God and stick together as travelers.

“Be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”  2 Peter 3:17-18 (NASB)

Where are you going?  Are you pointed in the right direction?  Are you traveling with trusted allies?  Are you making an effort to bring others on the journey with you?  These are important questions we all need to ask every day as we make our way ever closer to the kingdom of heaven and all eternity with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

My Conversation with Jesus

Conversation with Jesus

My Conversation with Jesus

I spent some time out in nature today and I ran into Jesus.  He was kind enough to sit down with me and answer a few questions.

Me

First of all thank you for finding me today and agreeing to answer my questions.

Jesus

You’re welcome, but for the record, I’ve been with you all day every day for many years and all of the questions you’re about to ask have already been answered.

Me

You know what questions I’m about to ask?

Jesus

Yes.

Me

You’re right of course, I have felt your presence since the day I put my faith in your death and resurrection as payment for my sins.  Thank you again, Lord.

Jesus

Call me Jesus.

Me

Thank you, Jesus!  Can we start with the number one question on everyone’s mind?

Jesus

When I will return to establish my kingdom is not a date I can supply; you know this, but I will take this opportunity to illuminate on what I’ve already taught.  There is work here on earth that needs to be finished before the kingdom of heaven can be established.  I cannot do this work.  This work must be accomplished by my followers.  This work is not for my benefit – it’s for your benefit.  I want each and every follower to reach their full potential.  The notion that you are waiting for me to return is actually backwards.  I’m waiting on you.

Me

Yes, I’ve understood that for some time now.  Can you give us some additional specific direction, aside from what you’ve already provided?

Jesus

I can, but I’m reluctant.  I don’t mean to be difficult, but I’ve already given you absolutely every bit of information you need to complete the work.  I’ve given you the boards to build with, I’ve given you the hammer and the nails; you would not benefit from me doing the work.

Me

Understood.  Let me walk through what I’ve learned from your teaching and maybe you can elaborate some.

Jesus

Good.  That sounds productive.

Me

Love God.  Love one another.  That’s the central message in your teaching.  We all know that, but I’m guessing we haven’t achieved the level of consistency you’re looking for.

Jesus

Can you do more?

Me

I’m certain I can.

Jesus

You’re not alone.

Me

Many of us are fully aware we need to do more, however, I don’t want to sound like I’m making an excuse, but we do have an enemy that is pretty good at keeping us distracted.

Jesus

Yes you do.  And that is to your benefit.

Me

I understand how some difficult times can be beneficial.   Still there are some extraordinarily difficult situations in this world that are hard to understand as being beneficial.

Jesus

As you know, I am not of this world.  You should also know that as my follower you are no longer of this world.  You are just passing through.  The value of those hard-to-understand circumstances in the world will be realized when you get to the other side.  Nothing in this world is of any real value on the other side.  Not the money you have in the bank.  Not the status you have achieved from your accomplishments.  Not the body in which you currently reside.  The only thing of value is how you respond to these difficult situations. 

Me

Yes, I see that.  But why do so many have to endure so much pain in this world?

Jesus

Are you familiar with the phrase spoiler alert?

Me

I am.

Jesus

If I answer your question about pain, I will be giving away the ending.

Me

Forgive me for saying so, but I think there are a lot of people who are ready to cut directly to the happy ending.

Jesus

The happy ending is here.  It’s right now.  It simply has to be realized.  Nothing is missing from the equation.  Every bit of pain in this world could be resolved with the tools I’ve already supplied.

Me

Even things like cancer and other horrible ailments?

Jesus

Light can eliminate darkness.  The power at your disposal is inexhaustible.  I know you’ve read the Bible.

Me

Many times.

Jesus

Expect a miracle.  When all of God’s children get pointed in the same direction – expect a miracle.

With that, Jesus stood up, placed his hand on my shoulder, looked deep into my eyes, and simply vanished into a warm breeze that floated across my body into the sky above.

Disconnected

disconnected

Disconnected

As followers of Jesus Christ, we have access to the awesome power of God.  That access to power can be corrupted and degraded if our receiving connection is disrupted.  Likewise, our ability to harness that power and generate positive outcomes in this world can also be corrupted and degraded if our delivery connection is disrupted; however, with the right connections, together with God, we can accomplish extraordinary things.

As an example, consider the electrical power we rely on in our homes.  It is dependent on a secure connection to the power plant that produces that power.  Once that power arrives at our home, the distribution of that power is dependent on the connections to the various wall outlets and lighting fixtures that provide us with a more comfortable life.  Without a solid connection to the power plant, there is no power.  Once that power arrives at our home, it is useless unless the right connections are made to the lights and appliances we depend on.

I think you can see where I’m going with this.  Our first concern as followers of Jesus is to make certain our connection to God is secure.  That is our source of power.  And like the electrical example, that power is useless unless we have a distribution system that can turn on lights and generate useful energy.

Our Connection to the Power of God

If you’re a follower of Jesus, you are without question connected to God – but how strong is that connection?  Do you feel like all the wires are connected or is it possible some have been broken and need repair?  Before we go any further, take a moment right now and consider what it is in your life that may be disrupting your connection with God.  We have to get rid of any clutter and make certain all the wires are connected if we want to operate with full power.

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  1 Thessalonians 5:23 (NASB)

Spirit

Our spirit is connected to God through His Word.  If you’re not involved in some form of Bible study, you should be listening to a good Bible teacher on a regular basis.  The closer you are to the Word of God, the stronger your spiritual connection to God.

“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”  Hebrews 4:12 (NASB)

Soul

Our soul is connected to God when our mind is constantly considering the teachings of Jesus.  The evidence of this connection is in the daily choices we make.  There are always at least two choices in everything we do and when we choose the godly choice based on our understanding of the Word of God, we will find ourselves powerfully connected to God.

“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?”    Matthew 16:26 (NASB)

Body

Our body is connected to God when we treat it as the home of the Holy Spirit.  As followers of Jesus the Holy Spirit has taken up residence in our hearts.   When we treat our bodies as the dwelling place of the Lord, we magnify our connection to God.

“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”  1 Corinthians 6:19-20(NASB)

Our Connection to the Body of Christ

We were designed by God to have fellowship with each other.  Jesus teaches that we are to love one another.  Obviously we can’t do this in isolation.  To be fully connected to God we need to be fully connected to each other.

“Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.”  Genesis 2:18 (NASB)

Fellowship

The primary teachings of Jesus instruct us to serve God by serving others.  Central to our connection to God is our connection to other believers.  We need to be worshiping together, learning and growing together, working together, and supporting each other.

“If we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.”  1 John 1:7 (NASB)

Talent

Every follower of Jesus has a specific task to fulfill.  We were each given specific talents that are to be used to glorify God.  When we identify our special talent and begin to use it through our interaction with the body of Christ, we dramatically improve our connection to God.

“For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.”  Romans 12:4-5(NASB)

Fruit

Everything we do in our effort to connect with the body of Christ is measured by the results of that endeavor.  It is our connection to God that empowers us to generate good fruit on his behalf.  When we come together and each use our talents to serve God by serving others, extraordinary things can happen.  Every good thing that comes about through these efforts is another powerful connection to God.

“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.”  John 15:4(NASB)

Keeping Our Connection Secure

In order to maintain our connection to the power of God, all of the above aspects of that connection need to be considered and exploited on a minute by minute basis.   The body of Christ is like an enormous communications cable filled with millions of wires that all need to be connected for optimal power generation.  There is no question that many of these connections have been disconnected for various reasons.  In order to realize our full potential and accomplish the extraordinary things possible through the power of God, we need to focus on reconnecting those severed connections.  At the same time, we need to constantly seek new connections that further expand our power grid.

“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.”  Ephesians 3:14-19 (NASB)

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

 

Jesus is Coming

Jesus is Coming

Jesus is Coming

Believers and unbelievers both need to carefully consider the fact that Jesus is coming back.  The Bible is not the slightest bit ambiguous about the return of Jesus:  He’s coming back to destroy evil, gather together his followers, and build the kingdom of heaven.  Even if you don’t believe in Jesus, he’s still coming back.  Even if you do believe in Jesus, you need to get ready.  Think long and hard about what you would say to Jesus if you came face-to-face with him.  Probably the best course of action would be to shut up and listen, but at some point he might give you the chance to explain yourself – what is your story going to be?

Right now, today, at this moment, we have the opportunity to write our story for Jesus. We can spend this day consumed with our selfish desires or look outside of ourselves for something more.  Jesus taught that we are to love God with all of our heart and love our neighbor as ourselves.  Jesus also left us in a world that is controlled by an enemy who works day and night to distract us from that simple teaching.  It seems clear to me that Jesus expects us to stand up to the darkness of this world and be part of the light that brings hope, love, and joy at every opportunity.

We are all at a different place in our struggle in this world, and in our spiritual connection to Jesus.  Below is a list of blog posts that are each intended to be the spark of inspiration that fuels your next move.  Look over the list and find the post that is speaking directly to you on this day.  As you read that post, remember that nothing written in this blog is as important as the thoughts that are going on in your head right now.  Only you can write your story for Jesus.

The Simple Truth

The Simple Truth

While the Bible is a large and complex manuscript, it is in reality a simple message.  There are essentially three major components:  the battle between good and evil, our salvation, and our path forward as followers of Jesus Christ.

Connecting

Connecting

Our God is omnipresent.  He is everywhere around the world. He is here with me now.  He is there with you at this moment.  God is our connection.  Can you feel his presence?  I can.  This is our connection.

Imagine This

Imagine This

Imagine you built yourself a set of wings that allowed you to fly wherever you wanted to go.  Would you use those wings only to entertain yourself, or would you also use those wings to help others?

It's all about the blood

It’s All About the Blood

Our current existence is completely dependent on the blood flowing through our bodies.  If the blood flow in our bodies is disrupted, negative things begin to happen.  Blood is our source of life.

Play to Win

Play to Win!

Our relationship with God is something that needs to be constantly developed, practiced, and improved.  Much like a professional athlete, we need to learn the basics, train hard, heed instruction, develop our talent, and give our effort everything we’ve got.  We need to play to win.

Wilderness Guide

Wilderness Guide

All followers of Jesus Christ are wilderness guides.  We lead by example.  We are always ready to share the details of our faith.  It should be our goal to shine a light into the darkness to expose the corruption that is leading others astray.

You Have Been Chosen 2

You Have Been Chosen

You are God’s chosen envoy.  God selected you out of all the people in the world to be his representative.  As a follower of Jesus Christ, you were most likely selected by God before you were born.

Your Journey

Our journey in this world should be focused on guiding others toward Jesus and away from the darkness that is pulling them in the opposite direction.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16(NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Father God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, we worship and adore you.  Fill our hearts with that which is your will and control our steps as we celebrate your approaching kingdom.  We look to you for all our basic needs and thank you for all that you provide.  Please forgive us Father for all the mistakes we make along the way and soften our hearts so that we may forgive others.  Keep us safe from the enemy who wanders about looking to devour our souls.  Fill our minds with your wisdom and our hearts with your love.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Your Journey

Have you ever been to a social gathering where you felt completely out of place?   Sometimes we aspire to someday fit in, and other times we are quite content keeping our distance. As we travel through life, we have to make choices regarding who we hang out with, what social circles we frequent, and precisely what direction our journey will take.  Our social engagements play an important role in shaping our lives and plotting our course.  As Christians, much of this world should seem misguided.  We should feel largely out of place.  In many respects, we should feel quite content keeping our distance.

“Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.”  1 John 2:15-17 (NASB)

Your journey through this world will undoubtedly expose you to those who are passionately focused on gaining wealth, physical pleasure, and personal status that can be exploited and leveraged for power and dominance.  As a follower of Jesus, you should know all too well how misguided those who have this attitude actually are.  Those who are infatuated with the things of this world are traveling on a journey going nowhere.

“Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.”  Colossians 3:2 (NASB)

As followers of Jesus, we are in large part attending a social gathering in which we are almost completely out of place.  Our mission is not to fit in, but to shine a light that illuminates a new direction of travel.  Our journey in this world should be focused on guiding others toward Jesus and away from the darkness that is pulling them in the opposite direction.

“For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory.”  Philippians 3:20-21 (NASB)

Believers should not be running away from this world, they should be incorporating themselves in this world as ambassadors of the world to come.  We are travelers just passing through.  It is not our goal to slip by unnoticed.  Our journey through this world has purpose and deep meaning.  We look forward to the kingdom of heaven, but we can’t get there until our work in this world is done.

Let this song speak to your heart.

Where I Belong – Building 429

Sometimes it feels like I’m watching from the outside

Sometimes it feels like I’m breathing, but am I alive?

I will keep searching for answers that aren’t here to find

All I know is I’m not home yet

This is not where I belong

Take this world and give me Jesus

This is not where I belong

So when the walls come falling down on me

And when I’m lost in the current of a raging sea

I have this blessed assurance holding me

All I know is I’m not home yet

This is not where I belong

Take this world and give me Jesus

This is not where I belong

When the earth shakes

I wanna be found in you

When the lights fade

I wanna be found in you

All I know is I’m not home yet

This is not where I belong

Take this world and give me Jesus

This is not where I belong

All I know is I’m not home yet

This is not where I belong

Take this world and give me Jesus

This is not where I belong

Where I belong

where I belong

Where I belong

where I belong

Love is Why We Are Here

Your journey through this world is powered by love.  When we connect our spirit to the love that God provides, we are plugged into the ultimate energy source.  Jesus made it very clear that our love for God and our love for others are the most important aspects of our journey through this world.

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”  John 13:34-35 (NASB)

The love we show others is our calling card as Christians.  Love is the bright light we as believers bring to every situation.  Just as we all need water to survive, followers of Jesus Christ need love to complete their mission here in this world.  Everything we do should be an act of love perpetrated by a mind that has no other agenda.

“If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.”  1 Corinthians 13:1-3 (NASB)

This world wants us to believe that money, power, and fame are the primary indicators of success.  While there is nothing inherently wrong with money, power, or fame, they are truly empty and meaningless goals.  True success is a byproduct of love.  Genuine loving relationships are far more valuable than any worldly measure of success.

“Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  Love never fails.”  1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (NASB)

Keep in mind, every loving action must come from a loving heart or it is rendered null and void.  The reason you serve others is equally important to the service itself.  God cannot be fooled.  We can’t simply go through the motions of acting in a loving manner in order to appear faithful.  Our service to others has to come from a pure heart of love, not a desire for recognition.

Let this song confirm your spirit.

The Proof of Your Love – for King & Country

If I sing but don’t have love

I waste my breath with every song

I bring an empty voice, a hollow noise

If I speak with a silver tongue

Convince a crowd but don’t have love

I leave a bitter taste with every word I say

So let my life be the proof,

The proof of your love

Let my love look like You and what You’re made of

How You lived, how You died

Love is sacrifice

So let my life be the proof,

The proof of Your love

If I give

To a needy soul but don’t have love then who is poor?

It seems all the poverty is found in me

So let my life be the proof,

The proof of Your love

Let my love look like You and what You’re made of

How You lived, how You died

Love is sacrifice

Oh, let my life be the proof,

The proof of Your love

When it’s all said and done

When we sing our final song

Only love remains

Only love remains

Let my life be the proof,

The proof of Your love

Let my love look like You and what You’re made of

How You lived, how You died

Love is sacrifice

So let my life be the proof,

The proof of Your love

God is With Us

The love that flows through us comes directly from God.  As followers of Jesus, we are to allow that love to overtake our personal desires and seek the desires of God.  Our human nature often wants to go in the opposite direction of God’s plan, but the Holy Spirit lives inside of every believer nudging us back in the right direction.

“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”  Galatians 2:20 (NASB)

When you allow your journey through this world to be powered by the love that God provides, your choices will be clearly evident.  When we trust God’s plan, we gladly turn from our personal path and follow God’s obvious path of love.

“We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.”  1 John 4:16(NASB)

When we rest in God’s love, our journey through this world is empowered directly by him.  Troubles may come, and troubles may go, but in all circumstances God is with us.  We can find comfort in the most difficult situations when we remain connected to God’s love through the Holy Spirit who is with us every moment of every day.  God loves you.  Everything you endure in your journey through this world is part of his plan to develop you into the fullness of your eternal spirit.

“So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.”  Ephesians 3:17-19 (NASB)

Your journey began with God and it will end with God.  God will never leave you.  God is with you right now.  Keep your heart open to God and you will find your way out of any darkness that overtakes your journey.  May you be greatly blessed in your walk with the Lord.

Let this song fill our spirit.

God With Us – Terrian

Be not dismayed, fear not the darkness

Jesus is here, He walks beside us

Gracious is He, through all our weakness

Forever faithful, forever good

Emmanuel, Emmanuel

God with us, living inside

Emmanuel

Lift up our eyes, to the Maker of Heaven

He is our help, forever present

Faithful is He, He is our constant

Forever faithful, forever good

Emmanuel, Emmanuel

God with us, living inside

Emmanuel, Emmanuel

God with us, living inside

Emmanuel

No matter what, what storm may come

Our God is here, Our God is here

When fear gives in, when darkness runs

Our God is here, Our God is here

No matter what, what storm may come

Our God is here, Our God is here

When fear gives in, when darkness runs

Our God is here, His name

Emmanuel, Emmanuel

God with us (Us), living inside (Living inside)

Emmanuel, Emmanuel

God with us (Us), living inside

Emmanuel

God with us, mm

His name, Emmanuel

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Biblical Direction

Biblical Direction

Everything You Need

The gospel provides us with a view of the future that empowers our lives today.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

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Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

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Let’s Pray Together

Almighty Creator of the universe, watching over us all, we praise your holy name.  Guide us toward your approaching kingdom as loyal followers of your every desire.  Thank you for all that you provide in our lives.  Bless us Father with your goodness and mercy, as we stumble our way through this life, and provide us with the ability to bless others in the same manner.  Keep our minds ever vigilant to the disruptive powers of the evil one.  Guide us on a path that avoids destruction.  You alone are our protector and deliverer.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Everything You Need

Depending on where you’re at in your life, it may seem like you need more money, more friends, a better relationship, a new car, or a job with more prestige.  You don’t.  All of that is empty and meaningless if you don’t have Jesus.  Throughout your entire life, there will never be anyone or anything that does more for you than Jesus.  Once you’ve trusted Jesus, you will have everything you need.

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”  Romans 5:8(NASB)

Jesus sacrificed his life so that you might live.  When you place your faith in Jesus, you have stepped out of this life into a spiritual existence that goes on forever.  Jesus did this for you, not because of who you are, but because of who he is.  Your salvation is a free gift from God granted as a result of your faith in Jesus Christ.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”  Ephesians 2:8-9 (NASB)

The simple message of the gospel is the most important news you will ever receive.  By following God’s plan for your salvation, you completely change the rest of your life here on earth and set yourself on a path that goes beyond eternity.

“In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise.”  Ephesians 1:13(NASB)

The gospel is an awesome demonstration of God’s ultimate power.  Every desire we have in this life pales in comparison to the life to come.  There is no bad day when you know tomorrow is going to be a glorious celebration.  The gospel provides us with a view of the future that empowers our lives today.

Let this song lift your spirit.

The Gospel – Ryan Stevenson

The Power of the Holy Spirit

Redeemed by the blood of Jesus and filled with the Holy Spirit, Christians travel through this life guided and protected by God.  Your connection to God will carry you through every struggle that comes your way.  Your salvation is the one thing you can depend on to last forever.

“You were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.”  1 Peter 1:18-19 (NASB)

There is power in knowing Jesus.  Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, Christians have special access to God.  It’s impossible to distance yourself from God when he’s living inside of your heart.  As believers, we travel with God every moment of every day.  There is no period of time in which we do not have access to God.

“Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  Acts 2:38 (NASB)

No matter what this world throws at us, we are ultimately able to overcome it all.  While it may seem difficult at times, in the end we will always win.  In the end, our difficult times will be revealed to be a victory.  Even the most challenging circumstance will prove to be a valuable lesson and an important strength-building experience.

“You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.”  1 John 4:4 (NASB)

The Holy Spirit living inside of every believer has no equal in this world.  Nothing in this world matches the wisdom, strength, and power of the Holy Spirit that provides us a direct link to the power of God.

Let this song convict you of this truth.

Greater – MercyMe

The Righteousness of God

Our God is perfect.  There can only be one perfect being.  In order to live for eternity with God, we must achieve a level of righteousness that is impossible to attain in our own power.  Praise God for sending His Son to provide us with a way to reach a level of righteousness that is acceptable to God.

“If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.”  Romans 10:9-10 (NASB)

God has placed us on this earth, inside these mortal bodies, as preparation for our life to come.  We are spirits inside human bodies and it is our mission to experience all the challenges life in this world entails.  When we live entirely for ourselves, satisfying the desires of our flesh, we are living separated from God.  When we live for God, we love him and love our neighbor, setting ourselves aside in service to God.  Living for God connects us to our spirit and makes us whole.

“If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness.”  Romans 8:10 (NASB)

Your journey through this world is unique.  We each have a specific role to play.  Some who have not yet connected to God may seem successful, but the truth is they are traveling on a road to nowhere.  There is no real progress without God.

“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”  2 Corinthians 5:21 (NASB

Jesus provides us with the righteousness we need to connect with God.  Without Jesus, we are totally unworthy to be in the presence of God.  By the grace of God, through our faith in Jesus, our sins have been washed away and we are able to stand before God and travel with him into eternity.

Let this song be your song.

My Righteousness – Go Deep

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Book of Romans

Book of Romans

God’s Gift of Peace

God’s gift of peace is more than the absence of conflict; it is a clear sense of eternal rest from our sinful nature.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16(NASB)

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Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

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Let’s Pray Together

Heavenly Father, we stand in your presence in awe of your awesome power and love.  We seek that which is your will in our lives and look forward to the return of your Son Jesus Christ.  Please Father, wrap your arms around each of us and provide for us all of our needs.  Forgive us Father, for all of our mistakes and failures in our pursuit of righteousness.  Develop in us the ability to also forgive those who disrupt our lives.  Open our eyes Father, to the enemy who is in pursuit of our souls.  Let us see clearly the evil trying to control our lives so that we can avoid destruction.  We offer this prayer in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

God’s Gift of Peace

In the first chapter of the book of Luke, we find Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, filled with the Holy Spirit and describing the role his son would play in introducing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to the world.  He finishes his prophecy with a simple statement that describes the light of truth that was coming to direct believers to the “way of peace.”

“To shine upon those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”  Luke 1:79 (NASB)

Our faith in Jesus wipes our sins away and leaves us with the righteousness needed to spend eternity with God.  God’s gift of peace is more than the absence of conflict; it is a clear sense of eternal rest from our sinful nature.  Our salvation means that the battle is over.   We are no longer at war with God; we are children of God.  We have been set free.

“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Romans 5:1 (NASB)

As followers of Jesus, we are no longer focused on our selfish desires; we are filled with the Holy Spirit guiding us in the footsteps of Jesus.  The Spirit of God lives inside believers and sin no longer has control.  Believers are free of controlling thoughts and now have the power to find peace in their new way of thinking.

“For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace.”  Romans 8:6 (NASB)

Jesus died for those who would come to believe in him so that they would no longer be a slave to sin.  As children of God, followers of Jesus have the ability to remove themselves from this world and find peace in the presence of God.

The this song fill your spirit.

Who You Say I Am – Hillsong Worship

Who am I that the highest King

Would welcome me?

I was lost but He brought me in

Oh His love for me

Oh His love for me

Who the Son sets free

Oh is free indeed

I’m a child of God

Yes I am

Free at last, He has ransomed me

His grace runs deep

While I was a slave to sin

Jesus died for me

Yes He died for me

Who the Son sets free

Oh is free indeed

I’m a child of God

Yes I am

In my Father’s house

There’s a place for me

I’m a child of God

Yes I am

I am chosen

Not forsaken

I am who You say I am

You are for me

Not against me

I am who You say I am

I am chosen

Not forsaken

I am who You say I am

You are for me

Not against me

I am who You say I am

I am who You say I am

Who the Son sets free

Oh is free indeed

I’m a child of God

Yes I am

In my Father’s house

There’s a place for me

I’m a child of God

Yes I am

God’s Gift of Power

Christians are directly connected to the power of God.  Through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, believers have continuous access to God.  Through prayer, believers are able to calm their fears knowing that God is paying close attention to their concerns.  As a follower of Jesus, you have the power to connect with God in a way that brings unimaginable peace.

“The Lord is near.  Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:4-7 (NASB)

As followers of Jesus, we are partners in his victory over the darkness of this world.  Like Jesus, we have overcome this world and are eternal recipients of his awesome power.  We find peace in knowing that when Jesus returns, we will join him in his eternal kingdom.

“These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33(NASB)

Jesus provides us with hope, joy, and peace.  Blessed by God with the Holy Spirit to guide us, we can see beyond this world into the glory that is to come.  There is great power in knowing the battle is already won and our eternal life with Jesus is secure.

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”  Romans 15:13 (NASB)

We have been blessed with the power of Jesus providing us with salvation and direct access to our Creator.  We find rest and refuge in the power of Jesus.  Nothing in this world can stand against the power of the Lord.

Let this song bring you peace.

Power – Elevation Worship

My weakness is hidden within Your glory

Jesus, my strength is in You

The odds are against me, but You are for me

Jesus, my strength is in You

Power belongs to the One who was and is to come

Power belongs to our God, alleluia

My steps have been ordered, You go before me

God, I’m depending on You

The hope of my future, found in You only

God, I’m depending on You

Power belongs to the One who was and is to come

Power belongs to our God, alleluia

Power belongs to the One who was and is to come

Power belongs to our God, alleluia

Your presence cannot be outrun

Your glory will not be outdone

Your presence cannot be outrun

Your glory will not be outdone

Power belongs to the One who was and is to come

Power belongs to our God, alleluia

Power belongs to the One who was and is to come

Power belongs to our God, alleluia

Alleluia

Finding Peace in Jesus

Peace is found in your relationship with Jesus.  Peace is found in your relationship with the Word of God.  Peace is found in your association with other believers.  Peace is found in this moment of worship.

“God is not a God of confusion but of peace.”  1 Corinthians 14:33 (NASB)

As followers of Jesus, we have a responsibility to apply his teaching in our lives.  Our peace comes from diligently practicing his instruction.  To that end, it’s important that we stay in the Word so that when needed, those precepts will be easily accessible.

“So then we pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another.”  Romans 14:19 (NASB)

We are active participants in finding and applying the peace that Jesus provides.  Peace is not an automatic byproduct of believing; it is an earned reward.  How we perceive each and every moment in our lives has an enormous impact on our sense of peace.  We can listen to the distractions of this world and feel defeated by difficult situations, or we can trust in our Lord and Savior to stand with us and lead us to safety.  When we stand strong in our faith and share that conviction with those around us, there will be peace.

“Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.”  2 Corinthians 13:11 (NASB)

Rest completely in the overwhelming love that God has for you; know without question you are safely in his hands.  No matter if you are deep in the valley or high on a mountain top, the Lord is with you.  Continue to walk with Jesus throughout your life and you will find God’s unshakable gift of peace.

Let this song settle your soul.

Glory (Let There Be Peace) – Matt Maher

One star burns in the darkness

Shines with the promise Emmanuel

One child born in the stillness

Living within us Emmanuel

We’re singing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let there be peace

Singing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let it start in me

One voice speak for the voiceless

Hope for the hopeless Emmanuel

One love brings us together

Now and forever Emmanuel

We’re singing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let there be peace

Singing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let it start in me

Do not be afraid, his love is strong

enough to save us

Nothing stands in the way, his love is strong enough to lead us

Do not be afraid, his love is strong

enough to save us

Nothing stands in the way, his love is strong enough to lead us

We sing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let there be peace

Singing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let it star in me

Singing glory, glory

Let there be peace, let it start in me

Let there be peace, let it start in me

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Book of John

Book of John

Well Done

When we love God and love our neighbor, we are completing our assignment from our Father and we are placing ourselves in line for reward in the world to come.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

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Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Almighty Creator of the universe, watching over us all, we praise your holy name.  Guide us toward your approaching kingdom as loyal followers of your every desire.  Thank you for all that you provide in our lives.  Bless us Father with your goodness and mercy, as we stumble our way through this life, and provide us with the ability to bless others in the same manner.  Keep our minds ever vigilant to the disruptive powers of the evil one.  Guide us on a path that avoids destruction.  You alone are our protector and deliverer.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Well Done

Unfortunately, there is no human father that is absolutely perfect.  As a father myself, I try very hard, but must admit to having made many mistakes.  Some of us are left without a father for various reason and others have fathers that are so far from perfect they would be better off without a father.  Even if you believe you have the best father in the world, he is likely lacking in some way – all humans are imperfect.  Fortunately, are spiritual father and Creator is in all ways perfect.  Ultimately, we all have the same father who is willing to provide for us his perfect love if only we will acknowledge him with our love.

“Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.”  John 14:23(NASB)

We were created by God to fulfill his purpose.  When we place our faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and seek to follow his teaching, we become the children of God our Father.  This completes God’s mission and places us in his care for all eternity.

“For us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.”  1 Corinthians 8:6 (NASB)

Everything good in our lives is a gift from our loving father.  Every struggle is a challenge from our Father designed to prepare us for the world to come.  Like an athlete training for the Olympics, we need to endure some pain in order to develop our strength, wisdom, and endurance.  As a result, our adversity becomes another good thing our father has provided to build us up and insure our success throughout all eternity.

“Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.”  James 1:17(NASB)

Our Father in heaven is himself good and perfect.  We love him because he first loved us.  There is no other like him.  There can only be one who is truly perfect.  God our Father is that one.

Let this song lift your spirit.

Good Good Father – Casting Crowns

I’ve heard a thousand stories of what they think You’re like

But I’ve heard the tender whisper of love in the dead of night

And You tell me that You’re pleased and that I’m never alone

‘Cause You’re a good, good Father

It’s who You are, it’s who You are, it’s who You are

And I’m loved by You

It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am

I’ve seen many searching for answers far and wide

But I know we’re all searching for answers only You provide

‘Cause You know just what we need before we can say a word

You’re a good, good Father

It’s who You are, it’s who You are, it’s who You are

And I’m loved by You

It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am

You’re a good, good Father

It’s who You are, it’s who You are, it’s who You are

And I’m loved by You

It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways to us

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways to us

Love so undeniable I can hardly speak

Peace so unexplainable I can hardly think

As You call me deeper still

As You call me deeper still

As You call me deeper still

Into love love love

You’re a good, good Father

It’s who You are, it’s who You are, it’s who You are

And I’m loved by You

It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am

You’re a good, good Father

It’s who You are, it’s who You are, it’s who You are

And I’m loved by You

It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways to us

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways

You’re perfect in all of Your ways to us

Traveling the Road to Eternity

It is our faith in Jesus that sets us apart from this world and connects us eternally to our loving, heavenly Father.  While this world is filled with darkness, our time spent here is vitally important and should not be discounted.  Every moment has been prepared specifically for our benefit.  In the end, we will carry the lessons from this world into our life to come.

“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.”  John 5:24 (NASB)

Thanks to our loving heavenly Father, we can look forward to a life without pain and sorrow.  We can expect to live a blissful existence surrounded by joy and love.  As we travel in this direction it’s important for us to remember that the journey is an indispensable part of the process.  Every difficult moment and every moment of success is equally beneficial to achieving our ultimate destination.

“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”  Revelation 21:4 (NASB)

Our time in this world is limited and we should be careful to use that time wisely.  We don’t want to get to where we are going unprepared.  We don’t want to leave this world with things left undone.  We should be ever vigilant to seek out and accomplish everything our Father has planned for us here.

“But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.”  2 Peter 3:13 (NASB)

Praise God for providing our eternal existence and reconnecting us with our loved ones in the world beyond.  Some will travel a difficult path to the new heavens and new earth, while others will somehow find a more peaceful path.  Each of us has a unique road to travel that has been designed by our perfect loving Father.

Let this song bring joy to your heart.

When I Get Where I’m Going – Brad Paisley

When I get where I’m going

On the far side of the sky

The first thing that I’m gonna do

Is spread my wings and fly

I’m gonna land beside a lion

And run my fingers through his mane

Or I might find out what it’s like

To ride a drop of rain

Yeah, when I get where I’m going

There’ll be only happy tears

I will shed the sins and struggles

I have carried all these years

And I’ll leave my heart wide open

I will love and have no fear

Yeah, when I get where I’m going

Don’t cry for me down here

I’m gonna walk with my grandaddy

And he’ll match me step for step

And I’ll tell him how I missed him

Every minute since he left

And then I’ll hug his neck

Yeah, when I get where I’m going

There’ll be only happy tears

I will shed the sins and struggles

I have carried all these years

And I’ll leave my heart wide open

I will love and have no fear

Yeah, when I get where I’m going

Don’t cry for me down here

So much pain and so much darkness

In this world we stumble through

All these questions I can’t answer

So much work to do

But when I get where I’m going

And I see my Maker’s face

I’ll stand forever in the light

Of His amazing grace

Yeah when I get where I’m going

Oh when I get where I’m going

There’ll be only happy tears

Hallelujah

I will love and have no fear

When I get where I’m going

Yeah, when I get where I’m going

Finish Strong

Those of us who have placed our faith in Jesus Christ have been granted the ability to overcome the world and push our selfish desires aside.  When we love God and love our neighbor, we are completing our assignment from our Father and we are placing ourselves in line for reward in the world to come.

“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.  Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?”  1 John 5:4-5 (NASB)

When we stand strong against the darkness in this world and pursue the teachings of Jesus, our Father in heaven looks on us with pride.  Beyond all else, we should desire to make our Father proud.  As followers of Jesus, we are supported by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to guide our steps and protect us from evil.  We have been provided with all the tools we need for success but it’s up to us to deploy these tools in the appropriate way.

“Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”  James 1:12 (NASB)

In one of his parables, Jesus teaches that you never know when the day will come and he returns to take you off to heaven.  For this reason, it’s important to always be ready.  Always be diligently following his teachings.  Always be seeking the will of God in your life.  In the end, the best thing we can hope for is a pat on the back from our Father and a loving hug that lets us know we have done well.

“His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’”  Matthew 25:21(NASB)

We should all strive to receive a well-deserved promotion when we finally find our way to our eternal destination.  It should be our goal to reach our full potential in this life so that we will be assured a place of honor in the life to come.

Let this song encourage your spirit.

Well Done – The Afters

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Road to Serving God

The Road to Serving God

Every Moment is Yours

When we place ourselves in the loving hands of someone we trust explicitly our world in that moment becomes filled with peace and joy.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

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Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

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Let’s Pray Together

Father God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, we worship and adore you.  Fill our hearts with that which is your will and control our steps as we celebrate your approaching kingdom.  We look to you for all our basic needs and thank you for all that you provide.  Please forgive us Father for all the mistakes we make along the way and soften our hearts so that we may forgive others.  Keep us safe from the enemy who wanders about looking to devour our souls.  Fill our minds with your wisdom and our hearts with your love.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Every Moment is Yours

When we place ourselves in the loving hands of someone we trust explicitly our world in that moment becomes filled with peace and joy.  Our relationship with God should be that kind of totally reassuring connection.  When we look beyond all the obstacles in our view into our eternal destiny with Jesus, there is nothing in this moment that cannot be overcome.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”  Proverbs 3:5-6 (NASB)

No matter how cluttered our moments become, there is always room for the peace and joy that Jesus provides.  We can find a godly purpose in almost anything we do.  Even the tiniest moments in our lives can have a profound impact on someone’s eternity.  Think about those individuals who were instrumental in your salvation – it’s likely that some of the most significant moments in your life happened in what seemed like mundane interactions to those sharing the good news with you.  Turning on a light is just the flick of a switch in most cases.

“Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”  John 8:12(NASB)

You don’t have to wait for Jesus to point the way.  If you are a true follower of Jesus Christ, you are on the path he has chosen for you.  All too often we are looking into the future for our calling when Jesus has work for us to do in this moment right here – right now.

“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”  Matthew 5:16 (NASB)

Every moment of every day is a moment to shine.  You have an important purpose wherever you happen to be – even if you’re trapped in a room filled with other Christians, your light needs to shine.  Encouragement is just as important as evangelism.  Every moment is yours to shine.

Let this song lift your spirit.

Shine a Light – Elevation Worship

Waking up to another life

No more sorrow and no more night

You’re the light, let it shine now, let it shine now

Burning bright ’cause we’re not ashamed

Got a world to illuminate

You’re the light, let it shine now, let it shine now

Nothing can stand against us

Our praise will break the darkness

We declare, Your kingdom’s here

Because our God is for us

We’re living in the promise

We declare, Your kingdom’s here

Shadows fade as you now arise

Hope is here with no end in sight

You’re the light, let it shine now, let it shine now

You’re the light, let it shine now, let it shine now

Nothing can stand against us

Our praise will break the darkness

We declare, Your kingdom’s here

Because our God is for us

We’re living in the promise

We declare, Your kingdom’s here

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

Shine a light, shine a light

We’ve got a light and we’re gonna shine

Jesus let your name be glorified

We’ve got a light and we’re gonna shine

Forever let your name be glorified

We’ve got a light and we’re gonna shine

Jesus let your name be glorified

We’ve got a light and we’re gonna shine

Forever let your name be glorified

Finding God’s Direction

Our walk with Jesus has been calculated by him down to the smallest detail; however, nothing happens without our participation.  If we are standing still, we are not walking with Jesus.  There is something in your path right now that needs to be done.  Maybe it’s not the major task you believe you are capable of accomplishing, but it is likely the task Jesus wants you to complete before your next assignment.  We need to move in whatever direction Jesus is directing our steps, no matter how insignificant that might seem.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you.”  Psalm 32:8 (NASB)

Like Jesus, we can do nothing on our own.  Jesus is dependent on God the Father for direction.  We are dependent on Jesus for our direction.

“I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.”  John 5:30(NASB)

Our personal desires are useless in evaluating our walk with Jesus.  The will of God should be our only concern.  God’s will in our lives is usually not hard to find – it’s typically directly in front of us waiting for our stubborn self-interest to be pushed aside.  We have to be careful not to miss God’s will at this moment, simply because it’s not the glamorous task we envisioned.  Everything we do, no matter how small, should bring glory to God.

“Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”  1 Peter 4:11 (NASB)

God wants us to trust him to direct our steps.  When we let go of our preconceived notions and completely open our hearts to God’s will in our lives, peace and joy will follow.

Let this song fill your spirit.

Help Me Find It – Song by Sidewalk Prophets

Live in the Moment

I pray you can feel God’s presence in your life at this moment.  Your transformation from unbeliever to Christian changed you in a dramatic way.  No matter if this transformation happened yesterday or thirty years ago, you are new every morning.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”  2 Corinthians 5:17 (NASB)

Followers of Jesus should wake up every day ready to share God’s love with the world.  God is with us every moment and our heart should reflect our relationship with God in everything that we do.

“Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor.”  Romans 12:9-10 (NASB)

When we center our lives on love and focus on those things that embody the essence of our relationship with Jesus, we are pointed in the right direction.  God’s power in our lives is magnified by the actions we take that are guided by these principles.

“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”  Philippians 4:8(NASB)

As a true follower of Jesus, God is with you in every moment of great success and every moment of difficult trial.  God is with you in every moment of abundant joy and every moment of tedious drudgery.  God has a personal prescription for your life and every moment is yours to enjoy securely in the hands of Jesus.

Let this song bring you peace.

Every Moment – Forever Jones

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Way the Truth and the Life

The Way the Truth and the Life