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My Manna - Page 19 Empty Re: My Manna

Post  Admin on Wed 05 Oct 2016, 7:12 pm

My Manna

"Their plan was to turn west into Asia province, but the Holy Spirit blocked that route." Acts 16:6-8.

God has the power to open any closed door. 

And yet-
He may decide to let things that seem important to us remain blocked. 

Why does the Lord allow doors to stay shut?

Protection. 
He might be trying to keep us from making a mistake. 
On our own, we may not have adequate knowledge to make right choices.

Participation. 
God could be sending us on a new path. 
His plan might include bigger opportunities, deeper satisfaction, more productivity, a season of suffering, or an opportunity to glorify His name. 

The Lord closed doors in Asia so that the apostle Paul would minister on the continent of Europe. 
His obedience led to increased fruitfulness—the churches at Philippi, Thessalonica, and Corinth—and to more knowledge for us through his letters to them. Acts 16:6-10.
Though Paul experienced much suffering, he also knew the joy of participating in God’s work.

Proof. 
When God says “No,” our faith is tested-
- we discover what we really believe about Him and His plans,
- and we prove our faithfulness to Him.

Perseverance. 
When our path is blocked-
- we have opportunity to develop steadfastness. 

Romans 5:3-5 tells us that we should actually “exult in our tribulations,” because of the positive results the Lord will cause through them.

Proper timing. 
Sometimes our Father places ​​​​stop signs in our way to work out the right timing for His will.

Punishment.
Past waywardness can affect future experiences and blessings,
- and even ministry, business​, study​ ​or​​ ​​even tourism​.

But-
"...we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28.
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Post  Admin on Sat 01 Oct 2016, 10:43 am

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"Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him." Genesis 21:5.

Many of us have retired already or are planning to in the near future. 
For most people, retirement is viewed as a time to relax, reflect, and enjoy the fruits of a lifetime of labour.

But consider that many of the greatest heroes of the Bible were just getting started when most of us retire!

God established His covenant with Abraham when he was 99 years old. 

After a life of hard work and great success, imagine God telling you-
“Okay, now it’s time for your life’s work to really get started.”

Similarly, Moses was around 80 years old when he led the Israelites out of Egypt. 
How many of us could lead a nation of millions through the desert for the next 40 years?

Believe it or not, the concept of retirement isn’t found anywhere in the Bible. 

As Christians, you and I are called to be on the firing line with the Lord our whole life on earth!

And today-
God may be calling you to do something as simple as-
- encouraging your neighbour or 
- making your famous chocolate chip cookies for a bake sale or
- writing a book. 
Perhaps He is even calling you to mentor younger members of your church.

Whatever God is calling you to do as a retiree and as a Christian-
He is calling you to continue to serve Him during this season of life, 
- using the time He’s given you to make a difference for Him.

Pray that God would help you use the time He’s given you in retirement to serve others-
- for their good and 
- for His glory!

Elders, be blessed!​
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Post  Admin on Wed 28 Sep 2016, 9:11 pm

My Manna​​

"Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD." Psalms 31:24. 

When Jim Burke became the head of a new products division at Johnson & Johnson-
- one of his first projects was the development of a children's chest rub. 

The product failed miserably, and Burke expected that he would be fired. 

When he was called in to see the chairman of the board, however, he met a surprising reception. 

"Are you the one who just cost us all that money?" asked Robert Wood Johnson. "Well I just want to congratulate you. If you are making mistakes, that means you are taking risks, and we won't grow unless you take risks!" 

Apparently, Mr. Johnson wasn’t joking! 

Years later-
Johnson & Johnson remains one of the largest multi-national manufacturers of pharmaceutical, diagnostic, therapeutic, surgical, personal hygiene, baby and biotechnology products.

We believers are called to take some risks so that God’s Kingdom may grow! 

So often, we cower at the opportunities He makes available because we are too afraid things won’t go the way hope and others might be disappointed or sneer at our failure. 

But God wants us to go forth boldly, sometimes taking a risk or two, so that we may accomplish great things for Him! 

Yes, sometimes we’ll get it wrong and there may be a hard lesson to learn. 
But we will learn and eventually great things will happen as result of our courage and persistence!

The time is short and there is so much work to do for the Kingdom! 
We cannot afford to stand in the sidelines any longer! 

Let’s ask the Lord to cause to us have courage and go in boldness! 
God’s Kingdom won’t grow unless we start taking some risks!
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Post  Admin on Sun 25 Sep 2016, 3:43 pm

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“And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.” Luke 21:1-4.

A preacher told of a church meeting where he had been asked to assist with a fund raising campaign for a church that had been struggling financially because the people would not give. 

He said, “It was the slowest and most reluctant giving I have ever encountered.” 

When he finished his exhortation and the pledges were taken, they had less than half the money needed. 

He said that an elderly couple in the back then volunteered to sell their house to make up the difference—they had been offered exactly the amount remaining that needed to be raised for it the day before. 

But in less than five minutes, the previously stingy congregation rallied to pledge the entire amount so the couple could keep their home. 
The sacrifice of that couple motivated them to give.

When we realize that all we have belongs to God-
- it is impossible to justify refusing to give. 

Sometimes we make the excuse that we do not give because of our lack. 
But in reality, even small gifts have a big impact. 

No man ever made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little.

The Lord after all does not need our money. 
We are not helping Him when we give. 

He is far more concerned about the ​​​​​​condition of our heart than the size of our offering.

The measure of our generosity is-
- not found in the size of the gift, 
- but in the sacrifice of the gift.
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Post  Admin on Wed 21 Sep 2016, 4:54 pm

My Manna​

Our society nurtures a popular misconception that tolerance is the only reasonable worldview to have. 

But when it comes to the law of God-
King Solomon’s life shows that compromise is a destructive choice. 
1 Kings 11:1-8.

In the early years of Solomon’s reign, he was committed to doing right. 

But later, when he saw the opportunity to promote himself politically, he ignored Scripture’s command forbidding marriage to pagans.
Deut. 7:1-3; 1 Kings 3:1. 

Though he may have viewed the union as an insignificant deviation-
Satan’s strategy is to convince us to compromise small portions of God’s Word, one at a time.

Solomon admired beautiful women of other nationalities-
- but instead of finding ways to avoid temptation, 
- he permitted himself one relationship and then sought more and more. 

Surrounded by foreigners, he inevitably became involved in their religions. 

Eventually he was ensnared by sin​.
​A​nd his heart turned from God.

Solomon’s temptations may differ from ours-
- but accepting compromise can trap us as well. 

Unchecked admiration for something beyond God’s will for our life can convince us to pursue it. 

Though we intellectually know this choice is wrong-
- it’s easy to harden our heart against the Spirit’s warnings. 

A preoccupation can deepen until the desired object, person, or activity holds a place of greater priority than our Father. 

If we allow that to happen-
- we lose our freedom in Jesus Christ and become caught in a prison of sin. 

In other words-
- the cost of co ​mpromise is the corruption of our soul.
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Post  Admin on Sat 17 Sep 2016, 9:36 pm

​My Manna​

“He gives power to the faint;and to them that have no might he increases strength... 
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah.40:29-31.

Spiritual joy is-
- neither to do with having our naturally desired outcome 
- nor linked to the achieving of our anticipated human results. 

Spiritual joy is-
- a power the redeemed receives from God following our new birth in Christ, 
- and sustained by our constant fellowship relationship with Him. 

Through our reconciliation to God’s Holy Spirit made possible by our new birth in Christ-
- we have God’s supernatural Holy Spirit presence in us. 

The presence of God as LOVE itself in us-
- is presence of a joy, peace and rest, which surpasses human reasoning and natural understanding. 

The joy of the LORD is a divine strength-
- which keeps us strong in situations meant by the enemy to debilitate and emotionally stagnate us. 

And as long as we remain in oneness and in perfect fellowship relationship with God-
- we will in His presence continually remain joyfully strong in all realms and dominion no matter the situation or circumstances we can possibly find ourselves in. 

God’s joy as divine power in us gives us-
- the might and the strength we require to rise above our human feelings of negative emotions. 

Through God’s prevailing joyous feelings in our hearts-
- sadness and sorrow can never have its way in our soul. 

The joy of the LORD protects our hearts and souls from sorrowfulness-
- and it shields us from the crippling effects of sadness and negative emotions. 

The joy of the LORD is indeed our strength. 
And as long as we remain in God’s presence-
- we will remain full of His supernatural strength, joy, peace and rest in all the seasons of our lives. 

In the midst of our mind boggling natural situations-
- the joy of the LORD as supernatural strength enables us to be strong. 

It gives us might in the midst of weakening situations. 
It keeps us joyful in the midst of sad situations and makes us to be full of laughter in our spirit man amidst daunting tearful natural circumstances.  

Our soul in the supernatural presence of God-
- is daily sweetened and gladdened by His outpouring of His loving kindness upon our lives. 

And our spirit man in His divine Holy Spirit presence-
- will daily rejoice and be gladdened no matter our natural world situations to the utmost glory of God our Maker. 

Rejoice in the presence of the LORD today.
Magnify His presence daily in you with your riotous worship and praise.
Strive daily to habitually praise Him in the beauty of His holiness. 
Make a joyful noise and reverence His holy name. 
​​​​​​Relax and rejoice in the presence of God. 

He is faithful and He will always make a way where there seem to be no way.

"LORD God I praise You in my heart and worship You in my spirit. Fill me up with Your joy and sweeten my spirit with Your blessed assurances. Have Your way in me LORD today and forever. Keep me as Yours and let my soul be gladdened always by the assurances of Your loving kindness for me.Amen."
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Post  Admin on Wed 14 Sep 2016, 10:45 pm

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The Christian life is the greatest life!

God takes a life that was empty and aimless and, worst of all, headed to a certain judgment, and he turns it around and transforms it. 

But in addition, he removes the guilt that haunted us, fills the emptiness inside of us and literally takes residence in our heart. 
This all comes as a result of the gospel believed and followed. 

That is the good news. 

But we also need to know there are some new problems that come along as a result of becoming a Christian. 
You get rid of an old set of problems, and you inherit new ones. 

A Christian is one who is-
- constantly in trouble,
- completely fearless, and
- continually cheerful!

We need to be aware of the fact that the Christian life is-
- not a playground; 
- but a battleground. 

In fact, the Bible tells us:
"We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God." Acts 14:22. 

But why does God allow trials and hardships in the life of the Christian? 
Let me give you a few reasons.

First-
Adversity tames us!
It levels us and keeps us humble. 

Prosperity has a tendency to make people proud and self-sufficient. 
We don't think we need God when we have a wallet full of credit cards, a lot of money in the bank, investments and good health. 
So we sort of ignore God. 

But when an economy goes south or the stock market crashes or our home burns to the ground-
- we turn to God because we are reminded of what really matters. 

As the psalmist said, "Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep Your word." Psalm 119:67. 

When the people of Israel were poised to enter the Promised Land after years of wandering in the wilderness-
God gave them this warning: 
"When you have eaten your fill in this land, be careful not to forget the Lord, who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt." Deuteronomy 6:11–12. 

We talk about the problem of pain-
- but let's talk about the problem of prosperity. 

Prosperity brings responsibility. 
I am not an owner of anything; I am a steward. 

I am held responsible for what I do with the resources that are at my disposal. 
So we must take the responsibility of prosperity seriously and make sure that we remain dependent on God.

When life gets really hard and adversity strikes, we pray – and so we should. 
But sometimes when life is going reasonably well, we sort of ​ ​forget about prayer. 

In his book "The Problem of Pain," C. S. Lewis writes-
"God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His ​​​​​​​​​​​​megaphone to rouse a deaf world."

Second-
Adversity teaches us!
It teaches eternal truths that we would not otherwise learn. 

I avoid pain at all costs. 
I avoid things that cause pain. 

We want to get into shape, but we want a pain-free workout. 
We don't want to hurt. 

No pain, no gain. 
If you are looking for a pain-free life, then you are not going to grow spiritually. 

Pain reminds us of a deeper need, which is a need for God. 
And he will teach us lessons in the valleys that we never would have learned on the mountaintops, things we need to know and things we need to share with others.

Think about some of the greatest lessons you have learned in your life. 
They have come through adversity, haven't they? 

And those are the things that you pass on and share with others. 
You remember those times when God came through for you.

Third-
Adversity trains us!
It gives us compassion to counsel and comfort others who are in pain. 

When you go through adversity, you have a new consideration of others. 

It has been said that success builds walls, and failures build bridges. 
If everything is always perfect and life is always firing on every cylinder, people don't relate to that. 

But they do relate to a person who is going through or who has been through pain. 
The apostle Paul said, "(God) comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us." 2 Corinthians 1:4. 

We need to continue in the faith. 
Some may say, "Well, my faith has been tested, and I can't handle this." 

But the faith that cannot be tested is the faith that cannot be trusted. 
With all respect, the faith that cannot make it through adversity is not real faith.

Real faith gets stronger through hardship, not weaker.
It becomes more resilient. 
It doesn't fall apart. 

Emotions come and go. 
The Bible says, "The just shall live by faith." Romans 1:17.
It doesn't say the just shall live by feeling. 

So press on. 
And when you are facing adversity-
- don't focus on emotions that fluctuate. 

Remember that God is there with you. 
And remember that he is in control.
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Post  Admin on Sun 11 Sep 2016, 7:40 pm

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Once when Jesus’ disciples had expressed concern over the difficulty of a particular aspect of faithfulness to God-
 “Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.'” Mt. 19:26. 

It’s always a mistake to assume that a thing can’t be done simply because we ourselves can think of no way to do it.

When it comes to our work as the people of God-
God can do things that are greater than we think are possible. 

Jeremiah prayed, “Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.” Jer. 32:17.

God has never required any person to do the impossible. 

It is a consistent principle in both the Old Testament and the New that if God requires a thing-
- then He will supply the ability for it to be done. 

That is the meaning of Paul’s wonderful statement in Phil. 4:13: 
“I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” 

That does not mean that God will help us to achieve any worldly goal that we set for ourselves.
It means that He will supply the wherewithal for us to accomplish His will and do the things that He sets before us as responsibilities. 

We need never fear being the position of having to do something for God but not being able to do what is required.

The Bible is full of examples of men and women-
- who placed their faith in God, 
- did whatever they were capable of doing, 
- and then found out — sometimes to their great amazement — that God can bring great results out of unpromising situations. 

We need only think of the story of David and Goliath to remember that-
God is stronger than we are, 
- and that it is the person who fights and works in the confidence of God’s help who sees problems solved that were thought to be insoluble.

Actually it is an insult to God-- for us to become discouraged and pessimistic about the work of the gospel. 
Is it our work? 
Does it depend on our power? 
Of course not. 

And if, as we believe-
God has called us to participate in His work, 
- then He will supply the solutions to whatever problems may arise. 

Paul wrote, “Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God.” 
2 Cor. 3:4,5.
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Post  Admin on Sun 04 Sep 2016, 10:30 pm

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Few of us can say that we have never been ashamed when it came to our attention that we failed to care for someone whom we should have cared for.
Whether our unawareness was innocent and inadvertent or the result of negligence-
- it’s painful to find out that we’ve failed to care. 

So we’d do well to be more inquisitive when it comes to others’ need for our caring.

Caring is a privilege. 
Caring for others would not be possible if we had not been endowed with some very 
special gifts.
While certain animals “care” for their young in one sense, the kind of caring that human beings are capable of requires a set of remarkable powers. 

It’s a privilege to have been endowed with these powers, and if we ever catch ourselves complaining about having to use them, then we need to adjust our attitudes. 

Duty is simply the other side of privilege.

Caring is a pleasure. 
Out of all the happinesses, or perhaps we should say joys, that human beings can experience, none is more exquisite than that of caring. 

And I don’t mean simply the sentiment of caring-
I mean the act of caring. 

The words “It is more blessed to give than to receive” encapsulate-- one of the most important truths that our minds can grasp. 
It would behoove us to quit paying lip service to that maxim and start learning that life really does work that way.

Caring is a protection. 
This is a story about four people: 

Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody.
There was an important job to be done and Everybody was asked to do it.
Everybody was sure Somebody would do it.
Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it.
Somebody got angry about that because it was Everybody's job.
Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it.
It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when actually Nobody asked Anybody.

This little story applies so much to Christians today. 

If not us, who? 
If not now, when? 
If not here, where? 

Nobody is getting the work of God done because everybody thinks somebody is going to do it, when anybody could have done it, but nobody did. 

Indifference, which is a failure to care, is a horrible sin. 

I don’t believe George Bernard Shaw was overstating the case when he said:
“The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them-- but to be indifferent to them; that’s the essence of inhumanity.”
Not caring for those around us (especially those to whom we have some special responsibility, such as our families) is a fate worse than death. 

Yes, it costs us to care. 
Yes, sacrifices may be required. 
Yes, it may come to the point where caring for someone even demands that we lay down our lives for them. 

Whatever the price of caring may be-
- it is nowhere near the cost of not caring.

We have such a grand opportunity in these last Days to witness with the Gospel. 
As we approach the End Times, more and more people are hungry for the truth. 

Sadly, they're being indoctrinated by atheists,heretics and nuts who believe in alien abductions, some even claiming to be Christ. 

The need is great for Bible-believing Christians to do the work of God.
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Post  Admin on Thu 01 Sep 2016, 10:46 pm

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If you have ever watched soldiers doing close-order drill on a parade field-
- you know how quickly they can reverse themselves and head in the opposite direction. 

If they attempt this while standing still-
- the command is “about face.” 

If they want to reverse while marching-
- the command is “to the rear, march.” 

In either case, there is an abrupt change leading in an entirely different direction. 

This is a good picture of what genuine repentance looks like. 
It means to change one’s mind and start moving the opposite way.

One of the Bible’s greatest preachers of repentance was John the Baptist-
- who called his hearers to a complete “about face.” 

He had seen too many shallow gestures where people pretended to repent-
- but were not willing to change their behaviour. 

John insisted that those who exhibited only superficial contrition should instead “bear fruits in keeping with repentance.” Luke 3:8. 

When his listeners asked what he meant by that-
- they were told to share their food and clothing, 
- to be fair in their business practices, 
- and to be content with their wages. 

In other words-
- they were to change their ways and 
- leave their old patterns of behaviour behind.

Repentance includes something else​ also​: 
A willingness to make restitution to anyone whom we have wronged. 

When Zaccheus the tax collector received Jesus into his house-
- he showed the true nature of his repentance when he said, 
“If I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much.” Luke 19:8. 

Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal​​​​ ​​any amends you may need to make.
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Post  Admin on Tue 30 Aug 2016, 9:50 pm

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Most important decision
God loves a seeking heart. 
You may be looking for a sense of purpose in your life. 
Your heart is empty and each day consists of simply doing the “next thing”. 

We have great news for you, friend! 
That purpose and contentment can be found in a personal relationship with God. 

You can know Him! 
More than you want to know God-
He wants you to know Him. 

From that relationship flows the best plan for your life-
- the plan made by the One who created you, 
- knows you best and loves you most. 

How can you know Him?
Recognize-- that you are a sinner. 
Romans 3:23 says we all have sinned and fallen short of God’s standard of holiness. 
Romans 3:10 says that there is no one without sin. 

In other words, we all make mistakes. 
We sin against God. 

Understand-- that your sin demands payment. 
Romans 6:23 tells us that the wages of sin is death – physical and eternal. 
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” 

It also promises that the gift of God is eternal life. 
In other words, Jesus Christ went to the cross for you, and for me,to make the payment for sin that you and I should have committed. 

He took our place! 
What a great love! 

Romans 5:8 describes that love in this way, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us”.
Confess-- your sin right now to God. 
To confess means to agree with God about your sin and choose to turn away or “repent” of your sin. 
You are choosing to step away from your old life and ways in order to follow God and live out His amazing plan for your life.

Receive-His gift of forgiveness. 
Understand that His forgiveness is a gift. 
You can’t merit it by being good enough or earn it by doing good things.

Romans 3:21-22: “But God has a way to make people right with him without the law. And God has now shown us that way which the law and the prophets told us about. God makes people right with himself through their faith in Jesus Christ. This is true for all who believe in Christ, because all are the same.”
Accept God’s forgiveness as His gift to you and thank Him for coming into your life. 
Surrender-- everything you know about you-
- to everything you know about Him.

Romans 10:10 tells us “We believe with our hearts, and so we are made right with God. And we use our mouths to say that we believe, and so we are saved.” 
In other words, we must believe in our hearts that Jesus died on the cross for our sins and that He rose from the grave. 
We confess that truth in our hearts and with our lives.

Turn-- your life over to Him and choose to follow Him from this day on.
Romans 8:38 promises: “Yes, I am sure that nothing can separate us from the love God has for us. Not death, not life, not angels, not ruling spirits, nothing now, nothing in the future, no powers, nothing above us, nothing below us, or anything else in the whole world will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Share-- your decision with someone. 
And celebrate the fact that God has taken up residence in your heart and life and will, from this moment on, be with you.

Friend, we celebrate with you this new relationship with your living God. 
It is the most important decision you will ever make. 

We encourage you to join a church that teaches the Bible. 
Look for a small group Bible study in which you can participate. 
Begin spending a few minutes every day, praying to God and reading His Word. 

It tells you so much about who God is and why Jesus came.
We pray that you will follow Him and experience all the blessings He has for you on your journey
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Post  Admin on Mon 29 Aug 2016, 5:54 pm

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"They forgot the God who saved them, who had done great things in Egypt." Psalm 106:21.

The author of Hebrews writes that-
Moses, "persevered because he saw him who is invisible." Hebrews 11:27.

In contrast, the Israelites endured only when their circumstances were favourable.

They forgot about the God who saved them.
They forgot about the great things God did for them in Egypt and in route to the 
Promised Land.
They were primarily governed by what they saw in front of them in their current 
circumstances rather than trusting in the invisible and eternal God.

Today many of us become occupied with-
- outward circumstances
- instead of centering our attention on God.

When our circumstances are favourable, we believe.
But when things seem to go against us, we question and doubt that God is in control.

Our world says that "seeing is believing."
But, God wants us to ​​focus on the unseen and believe.

"Now faith is-
- the substance of things hoped for, 
- the evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1.​

Where's your ​focus
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Post  Admin on Fri 26 Aug 2016, 11:27 am

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"Exalt the Lord our God; bow in worship at His footstool. He is holy." Psalm 99:5.

"No one can know the true grace of God," said the great Bible teacher A. W. Tozer, "who has not first known the fear of God." 

He continued: "Always there was about any manifestation of God something that dismayed the onlookers, that daunted and overawed them...I do not believe any lasting good can come from religious activities that are not rooted in this fear. Until we have been gripped by that nameless terror that results when an unholy creature is suddenly confronted by the One who is holiest of all, we are not likely to be affected by the doctrine of love and grace."

There was a time when the nature and character of God was a constant theme-
- in Christian pulpits, 
- but not any more. 

Generally speaking, today's preachers and writers tend to give people-
- what they want rather than 
- what they need. 

This is why we must stop every time we come across a reference to God's character in our Bibles and pause to consider it. 

No one has done anything mighty for God without a new vision of God's holiness. 

Ezekiel tells us of the "rims" in his vision that were "large and frightening." Ezekiel 1:18. 
And Jacob, rising from his sleep, said: "What an awesome place this is!" Genesis 28:17.

We will be of little use to God unless we know how to tremble before Him-
- for otherwise our own ideas and feelings of self-sufficiency will soon take over. 

Have we lost the sense of awe when we come into God's presence-
- which seemed to characterize the saints of the past? 
​​
​​​​I am afraid we have.

"God, I am afraid as I draw near to You. Nothing or no one can dissolve the fears that hinder me but You. Draw me closer, for in You and You alone lie both my salvation and sanctification. ​In Jesus' Name, ​Amen."
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Post  Admin on Thu 18 Aug 2016, 10:59 pm

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"Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Matthew 7:1-2.

A reader writes, "As Christians we are told not to judge others. However, we are also told not to cast our pearls before swine. Does that not involve a judgment? This has always confused me."

There is a difference between judgment and discernment.

Judgment

A judgmental person is-
- a critical, negative, and often an angry and even hostile person.

Jesus was saying that if you project this kind of an attitude onto others, that's what you will receive in return.

That's true in much of life-
- for what we project is what we get back.

Thus, if we project a judgmental attitude, that's what we'll get back.
Or if we project a loving attitude, that's what we will receive in return.

What we sow is what we will reap!
​​​​
​​Discernment

Also, the Bible says, that a spiritual person judges or appraises all things.1 Corinthians 2:15.

So while we are not to be a judgmental person, we need to judge or appraise actions and "all things" to discern that which is good and that which is bad or evil.

When Jesus said, "Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs,"  he was telling us to use discernment and judge the actions of evil people, but not to be judgmental towards them. Matthew 7:6.

We are to love these people-
- but at the same time lovingly avoid sharing with them what you know will be rejected and trodden on.

For me personally-
I find it very difficult to do this.

I still have a lot of growing to do in this area of my life; that is-
- to love people when I hate and even despise what they are doing.

"Dear God, please give me the wisdom to know how to evaluate (judge) all things, and help me to separate a person from his destructive actions. Help me to hate sin but love the sinner just as You do. And help me to love the things You love and hate the things You hate—and give me the wisdom to know the difference. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's Name, Amen."
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Post  Admin on Wed 17 Aug 2016, 5:54 pm

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"Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,The people He has chosen as His own inheritance."​ ​Psalm 33:12.

When a nation loses its ability to discern morality-
- it embarks on a ​​​​​​​​slippery slope toward self-destruction. 

Especially when it comes to basic sexual morality. 

When a nation turns its back on the commands of God-
He will say, “That’s the last step. I wash My hands. You asked for it. You got it.” 

Our country is in a crisis-
- and unless we have a moral rebirth, 
- we will join the graveyard of the nations. 

It’s time to wake up. 
Time is passing. 

It’s time to look up. 
Jesus is coming. 

It’s time to sober up. 
Satan is working. 

It’s time to pray up. 
Mountains need moving.

Ask the Lord to heal our land-
- forgiving the iniquities of the wicked by bringing salvation to their souls.
“Jesus answered and said...if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.” Matthew 21:21
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Post  Admin on Wed 10 Aug 2016, 9:18 pm

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"But God said to him, "Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?" So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God." Luke 12:16-21.

Alan Smith tells about a wrestler, Yussif, the Terrible Turk, "a 350-pound wrestling champion in Europe a couple of generations ago. 

After he won the European championship, he sailed to the United States to wrestle the American champion, whose name was Strangler Lewis—a little fellow by comparison who weighed just a shade over 200 pounds.

Although he wasn't very big, Strangler had a simple plan for defeating his opponents and it had never failed to work. 

He'd put his massive arm around the neck of his opponent and cut off the oxygen. 
Many an opponent had passed out in the ring with Strangler Lewis.

The problem when he fought Yussif the Turk was that Yussif didn't have a neck. 

His body went from his head to his massive shoulders. 

Lewis could never get his hold and it wasn't long that the Turk flipped Lewis to the mat and pinned him. 

After winning the championship, the Turk demanded all five thousand dollars in gold. 
After he wrapped the championship belt around his vast waist, he stuffed the gold into the belt, and boarded the next ship back to Europe. 

He was a success! 
He had captured America's glory and her gold!

He set sail on the SS Bourgogne. 

Halfway across the Atlantic, a storm struck and the ship began to sink. 

Yussif went over the side with his gold still strapped around his body. 

The added weight was too much for the Turk and he sank like an anvil before they could get him into a lifeboat. 

He was never seen again.

"What a fool," we say, but how many of us in reality spend so much of our lives investing in the pursuit of possessions and grasp onto them until our dying day?

As Jim Elliot said:
"He is no fool who gives up that which he cannot keep in order to gain that which he cannot lose."

"Dear God, deliver me from the ​​​​​​​​​​​​vain pursuit and grasping of material possessions, and help me to realize that my life does not consist in the abundance of things I possess, but in my love of, and in my service to You through serving others. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, Amen."
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Post  Admin on Tue 02 Aug 2016, 9:40 pm

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"He who walks with integrity walks securely,But he who perverts his ways will become known." Proverbs 10:9.

In ancient China, the people desired security from the barbaric hordes to the north, so they built the great ​​​​​​China wall.

It was so high they knew no one could climb over it and so thick that nothing could break it down.

They settled back to enjoy their security.

During the first hundred years of the wall's existence China was invaded three times.

Not once did the barbaric hordes break down the wall or climb over the top.

Then they bribed a gatekeeper-
-and marched right through the gates.

The Chinese were so busy relying upon the walls of stone that they forgot to teach integrity to their children.

Integrity means:
Keeping your word;
Being faithful to your commitments;
Doing an honest day's work;
Not doing in the dark what you would never be caught doing in the light.

It is being loyal, trustworthy, and faithful.

It also means:
Being true to yourself and honest with others;
Being genuine, authentic, and real, faithful, trustworthy, and loyal.

Our individual lives and our families will not be saved by personal power, wealth, education, popularity, nor beauty, but by integrity and our trust in the Lord.

Neither will our nation be saved by the power and might of our military nor our brilliant technical warfare.

In the long run we will only be saved by our integrity and our trust in the Lord for "Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord."

"Dear God, please help me as an individual to always maintain integrity, and help us as a nation to realize the tremendous importance of maintaining integrity. And grant that we will be forever reminded that 'blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.' Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, Amen.
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Post  Admin on Sat 30 Jul 2016, 1:43 pm

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"But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?" James 2:20.

General Stonewall Jackson's famous valley campaign. 

Jackson's army found itself on one side of a river when it needed to be on the other side. 

After telling his engineers to plan and build a bridge so the army could cross-
- he called his wagon master in to tell him that it was urgent the wagon train cross the river as soon as possible. 

The wagon master started gathering all the logs, rocks and fence rails he could find and built a bridge. 

Long before daylight the wagon master told General Jackson that all the wagons and artillery had crossed the river. 

General Jackson asked where the engineers were and what were they doing. 

The wagon master's only reply was that they were in their tent drawing up plans.

It has been said that there are three kinds of people: 
Those who make things happen.
Those who watch things happen.
​T​hose who don't know that anything is happening!

With God's help-
I want to be a doer and among those who make things happen. 

In college days, I was attending a youth group in a local church. 

The group was struggling and I was asked by the leaders what I thought was wrong. 

I said that I didn't feel I had a right to criticize unless I was willing to do something about the problems. 

Guess what? 

I got actively involved as a doer. 
Those were some of my best college days.

Let's not be critical unless we are willing to be involved. 

To be a doer-
- start doing something of eternal value, 
- realizing that we serve God by serving people.

"Dear God, please help me to invest my life by being actively involved as a ​​​​​​doer in the work of Your Kingdom—no matter how small and menial the tasks I do may appear to be. 
And help me every day to be 'as Christ' to all who cross my path. 
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, Amen.
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Post  Admin on Tue 26 Jul 2016, 11:47 am

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"But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also." Matth​​ew 5:39.

People read this verse and think God is telling them to be passive-
- to overlook what has happened.

That is not a bad thing-
- but it isn't exactly what Jesus was saying.

Turning the other cheek is not about being passive.
It's about being active!

So active that it actually confounds your enemy!

Turning the other cheek is about taking an action-
- so revolutionary,
- so shocking,
- so out of the ordinary that it shocks everyone around.

It confounds the world and can also change it!

Do you truly want to overcome evil?

So ​​​​​​stop sulking about it-
- stop dwelling on it and
- stop doing nothing about it!

Take a most unexpected action of surprising love-
- because that is what Jesus did for us,
- and it changed our lives,
- didn't it?

Has someone hurt you or sinned against you?
Those things happen and they always will because of our sinful human nature.

But now-
- turn that into an action of love!

Let's make a habit of surprising those who hurt us!
It may radically change lives-
- especially our own!
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Post  Admin on Sun 24 Jul 2016, 11:07 pm

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​"In fact, I myself supposed it was necessary to do many things in opposition to the name of Jesus the Nazarene."Acts 26:9.

See how the Good News Bible translates Acts 26:9: 
"I myself thought that I should do everything I could against the cause of Jesus of Nazareth."Here you see the root of Paul' s problem: 
"I myself thought."

And is not that the underlying cause of many of our problems too? 

We say, "I myself thought..." instead of asking: 
"What does God think?"

Sometimes sailors will attempt to establish the position of their ships by estimating the distance and direction they have traveled, rather than by astronomical observation. 

This is called "dead reckoning." 
It is sometimes necessary in foul weather, but it is fraught with peril. 

One mariner has said: "Undue trust in the dead reckoning has produced more disastrous shipwrecks of seaworthy ships than all other causes put together."

There are people who attempt the voyage of life by dead reckoning, but there is no need. 

God has charted the map for us with loving care in the Scriptures-
- and our plain duty is to study the chart so that we might become better acquainted with His purposes and His ways. 

For the better we know the Scriptures-
- the better we will know God.

We cannot ignore the facts of history or science-
- but if our perspective is not drawn from the Scriptures it will lead us astray. 

We must not rely on-
- dead reckoning 
- but on ​​​​​​divine reckoning​!​

"Father, just as the art of navigation requires definite and fixed points from which to take a bearing, so does my voyage through life. I am grateful, dear Father, that in You I have all the fixed points I need. Amen."
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Post  Admin on Thu 21 Jul 2016, 9:40 pm

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"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might." Ephesians 6:10. 

Historian Shelby Foote tells of a soldier who was wounded at the battle of Shiloh during the American Civil War and was ordered to go to the rear. 

The fighting was fierce and within minutes he returned to his commanding officer.

"Captain, give me a gun!" he shouted. "This fight ain't got any rear!"

In Ephesians, Paul describes the armor that we should put on daily. 

Have you ever noticed that every part of the body is covered except for one? 

​the back! 

The Lord didn't want us to run away and turn our back toward our enemy.

It would leave us vulnerable, with no armor to protect us against his attack! 

And just as a dog would when he senses fear, if we run from the enemy-
- he will relentlessly chase us until we are broken. 

But if we take courage and stand strong in the power of God's might-
- then the battle will be the Lord's,
And He has already won the victory!

The battle is raging! 
It's time to take up our armor and face the enemy head-on! 

There's no turning back! 
We're in this together!
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Post  Admin on Sun 17 Jul 2016, 12:12 am

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“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,Because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor;He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind,To set at liberty those who are oppressed..." Luke 4:18.

On returning to His hometown-
Jesus entered the synagogue and, to the amazement of all who were listening, read His job description from the book of Isaiah.

Perhaps some people in that congregation were confused by His statement that-
He was sent to release captives and set the oppressed free.Luke 4:18.

Who were those captives?
Was He going to storm the prisons?

Jesus was talking about spiritual bonds, not physical ones.

Everyone is born with a sinful nature, and we’re all ​​​​​​enslaved to sin until that bondage gets broken by faith in the Saviour.

But even after salvation-
Jesus is continually setting us free from things that entrap us, hindering our relationship with Him.

He delivers us from-

Errors:
The Word of God protects us-
- from the misconceptions and lies that Satan and his world system use to bombard us.

Evil deeds:
God’s indwelling Spirit empowers us-
- to resist temptation and live a righteous lifestyle.

Emotional bondages:
The Lord doesn’t want us to be controlled by fear, guilt, jealousy, bitterness, unforgiveness, or inadequacy, which steal the peace and joy Christ promised.

When we learn to trust Him in every situation-
He’ll set us free from these negative emotions.

Many Christians live in bondage without realizing it.
They know something is wrong but can’t straighten out their lives.

Despite all their efforts to “be better,” they keep failing.

No prisoner has the key to unlock the door-
- but Jesus is standing outside the cell, calling,
“Trust Me, and I will set you free!”
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Post  Admin on Thu 14 Jul 2016, 9:04 pm

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Have you ever felt as though you were ​​all alone and nobody cared? 

You might be surprised to know that the great apostle Paul felt this way too. 
In his epistle, he wrote, "Everyone abandoned me." 
2 Timothy 4:16. 

Know this: 
God has not abandoned you! 
He can compensate by His own loving presence for every earthly loss.

C.H. Spurgeon wrote:
"If all else forsook him, Jesus was company enough. 
If all others despised him, the smile of Jesus was approval enough. 
If the good cause seemed to be in danger, in the presence of his Master, victory was sure. 
The Lord who had stood for him at the cross now stood for him in the prison. 
It was a dungeon, but the Lord was there.
It was dark, but the glory of the Lord lit it up with Heaven's own splendour."

Listen: 
Better to be in a jail with the Lord than to be anywhere else without Him. 
Jesus is with us as well, in the good and bad times of life. 

God reminds us in His Word​:
"When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you." Isaiah 43:2.

When Jesus hung on the cross, He cried out the words "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" Matthew 27:46. 

Those were not delusional words. 
They were factual. 

Jesus, at this point, was bearing the sins of the world. 

Here is the good news: 
Jesus was forsaken for a time that you might enjoy God's presence forever.

Jesus will never forsake you. 
You have His Word on that. 

Jesus said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you." Hebrews 13:5. 

Or from the Greek it would translate out more like:
"I will never, no never, leave you nor forsake you."
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Post  Admin on Sat 09 Jul 2016, 2:50 pm

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The Bible warns against wavering faith.

This is the attitude of someone who goes from feeling certain that God will answer a prayer to merely hoping that He might (or becoming convinced that He won’t).

Of course, since we’re human, we all experience periods of doubt.
But what Scripture warns against is a lifestyle of spiritual ​​​​​​vacillation!

Wavering can have many causes.

For instance-
- ​O​ne might fail to see the Lord at work in a situation.
-​ ​​O​r he might worry that trusting Jesus in a particular predicament conflicts with human reasoning.
-​ ​​A​nother believer, focusing on circumstances rather than on God, may allow feelings to overcome faith.

A person who is “driven and tossed by the wind”-
- may lose confidence in the Lord and find his spiritual growth stunted. James 1:6.

Such a believer can become a “double-minded man”-
- because even as he prays, he tends to jump ahead of the Lord’s timing to manipulate a situation for his own desired outcome. v. 8.

When a Christian pays attention to his doubts in this way-
- he will often make wrong decisions that prove costly.

And then, after all the maneuvering, he will frequently end up dissatisfied with the results and bothered by his lack of peace.

What’s even worse-
- his faith may diminish.

Wavering is dangerous-
- so believers must develop confidence in the Lord.

In Mark 11:24, Jesus says, “All things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.”

The closest we get to perfect faith while on earth is-
- the ability to trust that what we ask in God’s will is as good as done.
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Post  Admin on Wed 06 Jul 2016, 11:55 am

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"A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity." Proverbs 17:17.
​​
​​​​Friendships are among our most valuable assets.

Acquiring quality companions—those who will laugh with us in good times and stand by us during trials—requires shared commitment and an investment of time and energy.

Healthy relationships thrive on . . .

Transparency

We must be honest with friends and encourage them to be truthful in return.

To preserve a strong bond, we can’t hide hurts or feelings of rejection they may have caused.
Transparency that is tied to accountability can also help make each individual a better person.

A solid relationship allows each party to gently point out errors in the other’s life and offer loving correction.

Time

Genuine friendship takes time to develop.
We must be willing to put aside other obligations and give priority to moments spent together.

A generous portion of our time with each other should be spent talking—speaking about our thoughts and desires and also asking questions to prompt our companion to open up.

This type of conversation allows a glimpse into the other person’s heart and mind.

Thanks.

Everyone likes to feel appreciated.
Expressing gratitude when friends are helpful will remind them that we’re thankful to have them in our life.

Moreover, we affirm our love when we communicate how much we enjoy a certain aspect of their personality or remember an occasion that is special to them.

Being a good friend is-
- a way to serve the Lord.

He designed us to be in relationship with others-
- so we should give our best to every companion the Lord places in our life.
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