Scripture of the day

I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought. 
1 Corinthians 1:10 


Word of the day

Immeasurable Impact on generations
 

 “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14

In

2 Chronicles 7:14, God says, “If my people…” Do you know what it takes to be God’s people? You have to first be God’s person. Be the person who will begin something that will bring generations of change.

But it begins with humbling yourself.
David prayed, “But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth;

I humbled myself with fasting” (Psalm 35:13 emphasis added). Ezra needed to cross a dangerous territory with a large group of people and little children. So he said, “I proclaimed a fast there at the river of Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God …” (Ezra 8:21

Fasting embraces emptiness and starves haughtiness. It is a form of withdrawing from normal life in the regular world that we live in, emptying ourselves of not just food, but anything else that we “seek, crave and require of necessity” other than His face. We should fast not just food, but entertainment, media and worldly junk—delicacies from the world’s table—things that contaminate and limit the power of a fast.

Fasting is our ‘body language’ to God. When we fast, we are expressing our heart hunger for Jesus, and how serious we are about hearing His voice and following His ways. From a place of humbleness when we pray and seek His face, we position ourselves to be ‘lifted up’ to see how He sees, to hear what He wants us to hear and to learn the sound of His whisper guiding our steps.

When we seriously commit to humble ourselves, pray and seek His face and turn from wickedness, He promises to hear us! He promises to forgive our sin and heal our land. One person alone cannot stop the sin of abortion in our land, but God can when we humble ourselves and seek Him. One person alone cannot stop the tide of immorality sweeping America, but God can forgive our sin and heal our land.

This promise is for all of us, every day: If we will—He will. When you fast and pray in this way, it will affect generations!

When you lay a solid foundation of humbling yourself in fasting and in prayer and in turning from wickedness, the impact will be immeasurable

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Word of the day

SPEAK WORDS OF LIFE AND HEALTH

 “Gentle words cause life and health.” Pr 15:4 TLB

James writes, “If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless” (Jas 1:26 NIV). The poet wrote, “Oh I say the things that I never should, just want to be heard or I never would. Talk on and on and know it’s wrong; the trouble is, my tongue’s too long.” So how can you control your tongue’s negative propensity? Engage it positively. How? (1) Be an encourager! “Gentle words cause life and health.” Your words can help a hopeless person keep on living and motivate a sick loved one to fight illness and become whole. Encouragers are God’s frontline against defeat, despair and depression! (2) Speak the truth in love. Saying what needs to be heard is often hard, but being a friend requires saying difficult things. “Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy” (Pr 27:6 NLT). Truth spoken in love can release people from their delusions, misperceptions and inflexibility to live free, productive lives. (See Jn 8:32). (3) Ask God for the right words. “The lips of the righteous bring forth what is acceptable” (Pr 10:32 NAS). How do you know what words the hearer will accept? Let God be your guide. (4) Make your words life-giving. “The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, turning a man from the snares of death” (Pr 13:14 NIV). The people you meet need words that turn them from spiritual death to eternal life. So today, speak words of life and health.



Baptism Sunday

Baptism Aug 21 2016



Word of the day

                             Nothing steals your joy like thinking, “I will enjoy my life when …”

 
It’s very tempting to think that happiness will come to me once I get something: “I would be happy if I just had a bigger house, another car, a better job, more money, a nicer family, a new TV….” But such thoughts are very deceptive. In truth, 
all those things we want actually make us miserable; we fight and quarrel about what we want, and then we’re upset when we don’t get it (see James 4:1-4). Don’t get caught up in things that you want or need. Instead, you should not worry about getting what you need; rest assured your heavenly Father will take care of what you need (see Matthew 6:30-32). It’s foolish to make your enjoyment of life hinge upon anything. There will always be one more thing for you to acquire before you can “enjoy life.” The more you have, the more you have to worry about, which makes life that much harder to enjoy. Instead of expecting possessions or circumstances to give you joy, seek the only source of everlasting joy—Jesus. Jesus says he came to Earth “so that [you] may have the full measure of my joy within [you]” (John 17:13). Similarly, Jesus said, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete (John 15:11). Jesus offers to make our joy complete and to give us the full measure of his joy. Since Jesus is wholly God, His joy is complete and whole joy. That Jesus offers us such joy is astonishing. Therefore, find your joy in God for in his presence is fullness of joy (see Psalm 16:11). Don’t let your joy depend on getting all the things you want because there will always be more things that you don’t have, and therefore there will always be more things that will prevent you from enjoying life. Let Jesus be your joy, rather than waiting to enjoy life “when….”


Word of the day

What’s New?

 

 “His compassions…are new every morning.” Lam 3:22-23 NIV

Are you going through a hard time at the moment? You’re not alone! Things were so bad in Israel that when Jeremiah wrote one of the books of the Bible he called it Lamentations.
In a positive-thinking, feel-good world, that’s not exactly a best-selling title. Jeremiah describes God’s people as a “widow” and a “slave,” and says, “All her friends have dealt treacherously with her; they have become her enemies” (Lam 1:2 NKJV).
As you move through the book verse by verse, things just keep going from bad to worse as God’s people reap what they have sown. Then suddenly in the middle of all his lamenting, when you think things can’t get any worse, Jeremiah writes, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lam 3:22-23 NIV).
Isn’t that wonderful? God’s love, compassion and faithfulness have been placed in an account that cannot be overdrawn, that you don’t have to contribute to, and that’ll last as long as you live. In a world that doesn’t seem to care, where only the fittest survive, that’s good to know.
Next time somebody says to you, “What’s new?” tell them, “God’s love, compassion, and faithfulness.”
The dictionary defines compassion as “tenderness of heart that disposes a person to overlook injuries or to treat an offender better than he or she deserves.” So when you wake up each day, be like the lady who prayed, “Lord, I’m glad Your mercies are new every morning, because I sure used up all of yesterday’s.”


Word of the day

Have Little Foxes

 “Catch…the little foxes that spoil the vines.” SS 2:15 NKJV

Michelangelo once sculpted a figure out of marble while a friend watched. Later his friend went away on business and when he returned he said, “I see you haven’t worked on your sculpture.” The great artist replied, “I’ve been working constantly on it since you left.” His friend asked, “How’s that possible?” Michelangelo replied, “I’ve softened a line here, straightened the lip there, defined the muscles more clearly, polished this and sharpened that.” His friend said, “But those are trifles!” Michelangelo replied, “Trifles they may be, but trifles make perfection, and perfection is no trifle!” Solomon writes, “Catch…the little foxes that spoil the vines, for our vines have tender grapes.”
 
One Bible teacher put it this way: “Small things that seem unimportant can spoil ‘tender grapes,’ like a relationship, a career, or a life dedicated to Christ. How many marriages fail because spouses paid no attention to the little things? How many athletes lost competitions because of tiny missteps? Many of us can see the big picture of our lives and our relationship with God, but we neglect the details necessary for bringing it all into focus. We must attend to ‘trifles’ if we hope to succeed. As we act faithfully in the little things God will bless us with greater opportunities. We’ll develop the faithfulness and obedience to conquer the great issues in life.” Only when you’re faithful in small things will God entrust you with greater things (See Mt 25:21). So, what “little foxes” do you need to catch today? Little resentments, little habits, little areas of dishonesty? Nip them in the bud. Deal with them, and watch how it changes your life.


Word of the day

Playing the Lesser Part

 “Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead.” Php 2:3

Frances Green was an elderly lady living on a pension. Every year she sent a dollar to the Republican National Convention. One day she received an invitation to meet President Reagan. Not realizing the RSVP should include a generous donation, she scraped up every cent she had and took a four-day train ride across America. She slept sitting up because she couldn’t afford a sleeper. When she arrived at the White House and found her name wasn’t on the guest list, she was heartbroken. Overhearing her story, a Ford Motor executive contacted a presidential aide and got clearance to give Frances a tour and introduce her to the president the next day. But the following morning there was a military uprising overseas and the president was in high-level meetings. When Frances showed up at the White House the executive showed her around and walked her past the Oval Office hoping she’d at least get a glimpse of the president. As they passed he looked up, stood up from his desk and announced, “Frances! Those darn computers fouled up again! If I’d known you were coming I’d have come out to get you myself!” The little woman from California had nothing to give the president that day, but there was something he could give her, so he made time in his busy schedule.

Paul says, “Don’t push your way to the front…Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead.” In other words, be willing to play second fiddle. Remind yourself that God sees, God evaluates, and God rewards. So, today go out of your way to help somebody.


Word of the day

Focus on what lasts, not on what doesn’t.

 “Blessed are the poor in spirit.” Mt 5:3 NKJV

Let’s look at the Beatitudes (what our attitudes should be). Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Now Jesus wasn’t saying He’s against you having money, He was saying He’s against money having you. He will actually prosper you so that you can finance and fulfill His purposes in the earth. But He doesn’t measure the size of your faith by the size of your bank balance. In one of His parables Jesus called a wealthy man a “fool.” That wasn’t because the man was rich, it was because he wasn’t “rich toward God” (Lk 12:21 NKJV). Old John D. Rockefeller once said, “I’ve made many millions but they brought me no real happiness. I’d barter them all for the days I sat on an office stool in Cleveland and counted myself rich on three dollars a week.” Having more money may give you social status, but serving God gives you kingdom-significance. Big difference! So keep your focus on what matters and live for what lasts. In Kemi, Finland, they supposedly built a sprawling ice castle that featured a theatre, a playground, an art gallery and a chapel. The castle walls were 13 feet high and stretched for 1,650 feet. The chapel was a popular wedding venue and the theatre could seat 3,000 people. In it they held rock concerts, musicals, modern dance and opera recitals. The problem was, its upkeep cost millions of dollars, and it all melted in the spring. Are you getting the idea? Focus on what lasts, not on what doesn’t.



Word of the day

The Touch of the Master’s Hand

 “Jesus…touched him.” Mk 1:41 NKJV

It was battered and scarred and the auctioneer thought it hardly worth his while, to waste much time on the old violin so he held it up with a smile. ‘What am I bidden for this old violin? Who’ll start the bidding for me? A dollar, a dollar, who’ll make it two? Two dollars, and who’ll make it three? Three dollars once, three dollars twice, going for three,’ but no; from the back of the room a gray haired man came forward and picked up the bow. Then sweeping the dust from the old violin, and tightening up all the strings, he played a melody pure and sweet, as sweet as the angels sing. The music ceased and the auctioneer, with a voice that was quiet and low, said, ‘What am I bid for the old violin?’ and he held it up with the bow. ‘A thousand dollars, and who’ll make it two? Two thousand, and who’ll make it three? Three thousand once, three thousand twice, going, and gone,’ said he. The people cheered, but some of them said, ‘We do not quite understand. What changed its worth?’ Then came the reply, ‘The touch of the Master’s hand.’ And many a man with his life out of tune, battered and scarred with sin, is auctioned cheap to a thoughtless crowd, much like the old violin. A mess of pottage, a glass of wine, a game, and he shuffles along: going once, going twice, he’s going and almost gone. But the Master comes, and the thoughtless crowd never can quite understand, the worth of the soul, and the change that’s wrought, by the touch of the Master’s hand.”




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