Monday, March 31, 2008

Are You Doing the Right Thing?

Many people put forth a lot of effort into doing things right but I encourage you to ask yourself whether you are actually doing the right things. Whatever you are currently doing is primarily a direct result of the choices you've made thus far in your life. Many choices we make in regards to improvements in our lives are equivalent to putting a new paint job on an old car that will not run…you still have an old car when you are finished and it still will not run.

Are you painting things in your life that are broken that are simply not working for you?

How Big is your Dream?
Allow me to influence your dreaming ability with these pictures.

If you're gonna dream, dream big. Understand that life is more than motor homes, boats, cars and airplanes and your priorities should be on Christ, family, health and then business. My point in this message is that God is an abundant God and having wealth is not a sin. Money is not the root of all evil, the love of money or love of any thing is what is evil. Money builds churches, orphanages, schools and hospitals. You can do a lot more with money than you can without it. The devil is winning when you are not becoming all that God has planned for you. The devil wants you to stay poor, broke and useless. And that same devil shutters when he sees a Christain with a lot of money that is determined to build God's kingdom. The devil came to kill, steal and destroy but Christ came so that you may have life and to live it to the full. (John 10:10) Living life to the full is not lacking anything. If you wind up just getting the Mercedes coupe in the picture above, thank God for the blessing. If you just get to take a trip in the motor home in the picture, thank God. Just never ever quit or loose sight of you dream and remember that anything is possible through Christ. Keep on working towards the desires of your heart and have faith to change what you're doing to change what you are getting. Just be certain it is God's will whatever you do. God wants to have the desires of your heart but it's a two way street. You have a part to do and God's not going to do your part. So stop limiting yourself and stop allowing obstacles that the devil puts in your way. Take control of your life, plug into the Word of God and release the strangle holds in your life. Ask God for wisdom and discernment.

Is what you are doing now getting you what you want in life? Why not?

I understand very well some of your thoughts you may have formed alread. I know, "Your dreams are much bigger, you want to do more than just have a nice motor home, you'd like one for each family member, what a great idea to have the car to go to the airport to get on your plane".
Or rather was your thinking more like…
I can't afford that. (according to who?)
I don't have the resources to buy that. (again, according to who?)
I wouldn't spend my money that way. (whose money?)

That's a ridiculous display of wealth. (who created it?)

They've got more money than sense (once more...according to who?)"

If you are having these past thoughts you are simply a product of our society which is limiting. People put limits on you all the time with comments like "what do you think you are doing, you can't afford that, your living above your raising, get off your high horse, you're not smart enough to do that…need I go on? My answer again is this...According to Whom? I serve an abundant God and Christ even told us that we would do greater things than He would. What that means to me is that I am now able to spread His Word across the world in ways such as this posting that was not available in His time. This is but one more means to spread His Word to everyone before He returns.

The truth is we serve an abundant God who is a giving God and we simply can't out give Him nor out produce Him because He owns it all. Everything we try to take credit for is His. And, God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (Phi 4:19) I am a child of God and if He will provide such blessings for others, then why wouldn't He provide it for you or me? In most cases, it's because of the mindset we have developed since birth, the choices we have made, the priorities we placed on what we do and our lack of faith. Conforming to the ways of the world limits us but transforming ourselves with a renewing of our mind by doing that which is good and pleasing to God is unlimiting. (Rom. 12:2) Trust and Obey God, for there's no other way.

Would you like to get your priorities in order and develop a mindset that is not limiting but open to the abundance that God has available for you? If so, then ask God for discernment and direction. You can do all things through Christ which strengthens you. (Phil 4:13)
God Bless!

Friday, March 21, 2008

He Chose the Nails

As we celebrate Easter, let's reflect on this powerful message. Have a blessed Easter with your family. He is Risen.

He Chose the Nails
John 11 & 13

"Live Like You Were Dying" was a number one hit several years ago in the country music world. It was a great record released by country star, Tim McGraw - the lyrics posing the commonly contemplated question, "What would you do if you knew that you were in the last few days of your life?"

Tim McGraw's song offers a few suggestions: sky diving, Rocky Mountain climbing, and riding on a bull named 'Fu Manchu', among other exhilarating ideas. It's a well-written and well-performed song. It brings up the notion that we would want to go experience one last thrill, something that we'd thought about doing, but never before actually had the courage or inclination to do. Knowing you're going to die in the near future gives us a little more bravado than normal, reducing the fear regarding dangerous activities we may have avoided in the past.
In John 13, Jesus knew that what He had come to earth for was about to transpire. "Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and go to the Father." John 13:1b
Jesus was on a very specific mission, and all the events that were about to happen were crucial to his mission and purpose. In fact, all of creation and all of time had waited for this moment and what Jesus was about to do and endure. What had already happened was hugely significant. His birth, for example, was certainly monumental. His teaching and miracles were both very important. But the birth, teaching, and miracles alone and even together would likely not have stood the test of time. They would likely be remembered and written about; but they would not have completely fulfilled the prophecies foretold by the prophets in the Old Testament. There had to be more. There had to be the cross. And more than that, there had to be the resurrection, the single greatest, and most momentous event in all of history, past, present, and future.
So, how did Jesus spend his last moments, knowing that He was about to die? 1b"Having loved His own who were in the world, He now showed them the full extent of His love. 3Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God; 4so He got up from the meal, took off His outer clothing and wrapped a towel around His waist. 5After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him."

Jesus chose to demonstrate how much He cared for His friends. He chose to humble Himself and serve others. And He chose to stay the course that would lead to arrest, humiliation, mockery, horrendous torture and death on the cross. In a society where 'comfort' and 'self' are our central, hotly pursued concerns, Jesus showed by example that there are greater choices that only a person of unfathomable love can make. He chose mission over survival, horrific pain over comfort; service and humility over pride; courage over instinct; and He chose others over self. He chose the way in which He would go and the kind of death that He would die. It was a resolute, determined path that would lead to the most incredible event the world has ever witnessed.

He chose arrest; and He chose brutal flogging that literally skinned Him alive. Jesus indeed purposely chose His fate – one that would glorify His Father and bring all mankind and nations to Him. He even chose the nails in His hands and feet that would add to His already intense suffering and pain – pain that few of us can or want to even imagine.

Did you hear that? He chose the nails. And in so doing, He chose you - and He chose me.

He chose to give you and me life and life to the full. He chose to take away all of the mistakes and shortcomings – the heavy burden of all of our sins that you and I have ever committed and ever will commit. He chose to show you and me the full extent of His love, just like He showed His friends at the evening meal, and the entire world by His death. And He chose to allow believers like you and me to share in His resurrection, the single greatest event to ever occur – the moment in time that opened the door to eternity with God in heaven – all of this for you and me.
Sky diving or riding a bull named 'Fu Manchu' doesn't really come to mind for me personally. Honestly, when contemplating my last days, washing my friends' feet isn't the activity that readily comes to mind either. I, like most of us, am still stuck on self too much – there's my stubborn pride again, constantly getting in the way of what is so much better. I'm stuck with a love that doesn't compare to the love of Jesus; although I continue to be amazed at His example and pray that I too can somehow approach His lofty standard and willingness to love. It is a mystery to me, and a profound paradox that humility, lowering our 'self' and elevating others, is God's will for us - the secret to glorifying Him and experiencing the best that life on this planet affords.

Resurrection is new life. It is God's gift to us. Like the trees and flowers that are blooming at this time of year with their evidence of new life and vitality that can only come from Him, Jesus allows us to partake in this greatest of all gifts – a new beginning, a brand new life.

"I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" John 11:25-26

Resurrection, the transcendence and defeat of death, is an incredible option given to each of us. It is a choice that we each must make. I choose to answer Jesus' question in a bold affirmation: Yes, I believe in You, King Jesus – You who chose me. I choose to live both now and for eternity.
Will you boldly answer that question with a definitive, "YES"? When we answer in the affirmative, you and I will experience abundant, new, everlasting life in Him. We choose Him, because of what He chose to do for us.

He chose the nails.


Prayer: Lord, your gift of love to us is greater than we can even comprehend. All we can do is fall at Your feet and say, "we love You – we thank You for who You are and the amazing choice You made for us. We proclaim You King of our lives." In Your precious name we pray, Amen.
If you would like to commit your life to Jesus Christ, you can do so, and thereby experience the most important gift ever offered to mankind! You don't have to be perfect – I'm certainly not and I know you aren't either. In fact, we all sin and fall far short of perfection. Won't you make the greatest decision you can ever make? I pray that you will do so today.  By Tim D.\
Have a Wonderful Easter!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A Miracle - Florida man Raised from the Dead

Do you believe in miracles? Folks, miracles happen around us all the time and if you are a Christian, you have to believe in miracles. Jesus being raised from the dead was a miracle along with the many other recorded miracles written in the Bible.

Here is a story about a South Florida man pronounced dead from a massive heart attack and then brought back to life. His doctor says the man was raised from the dead by a simple prayer. Watch the video or read the story from this link. (The video link is above the title at this link)

Do you believe in miracles?

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Tower of Success

Tower of Success

A definition of success includes an extremely important word, and that is the word, “commitment”.

A full definition of success is the “unwavering and ongoing commitment to hearing God’s word, believing God’s word, and obeying God’s word.”

This definition has no time frame, but rather succinctly describes a way of life. We may never be able to quantify the fruit or full effect of our doing this, but Solomon, the wisest and wealthiest man on earth, says that this is how your plans will succeed. Commitment to these three things:
Hearing, Believing, Obeying God’s Word - this is our success.

He said, “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. The Lord works out everything for His own ends – even the wicked for a day of disaster.” Proverbs 16: 3-4 You do need to make plans in your life, and you do need to establish something to do in life. But be sure that you have listened to God as to what that “something” is. That “something” needs to be of God and for God. And the “end” or result of your work will be brought about “for His own ends”.
Knowing God’s will for your life comes only by committing your life to Him and purposely and diligently listening for His direction. Committing to Him is not a temporary or seasonal condition; neither is listening for His revelation a one-time event. When you commit to watching for His revelation, He will deliver that essential knowledge to you in His timing.

Our commitment to God is not a sporadic “attempt” or a “trying”; and it is not something to undertake inconsistently. No, it is a dedicated life-long way of doing things.

Have I always succeeded in doing this? Hardly, but I’m getting better at doing so, and I do understand what I need to always be doing - and that is to “stand at my watch” as stated in Habakkuk 2:1 – “I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts; I will look to see what He will say to me…”
The tower is the place of strength and safety. When we commit our lives to Jesus Christ, we are standing on the very place of power – the rock, the fortress, the strong tower. We are standing on the place where we have the best vantage point for sight and insight – for vision, clarity, and discernment. We are given those rich gifts when we stand on the Lord. He is the place – in fact, the only place where we can view our surroundings with clarity, hear God’s Word distinctly, and where we can spot our enemies before they reach our gates.

We are to be vigilant – to purposely look for God’s will and Word in our life. We see that most clearly when we are positioned correctly – on His tower, His rampart. When you choose to do that, His mighty Word will be delivered to you.

Habakkuk says, “For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false.” (2:3) God’s revelation is truth, and it will come to you when His perfectly designed time-table allows it to come to you. The appointed time will be the exact perfect moment designed for you and you alone. If you don’t wait for His revelation, and if you are not positioned correctly on the tower, you will not hear His word, and you will miss your “essence of life” revelation. His revelation is critical to your life; and it is also the powerful defense against the enemy that will come against you – not “if”, but “when”.

Tightly intertwined with the word, “commitment” is the word “patience”. Both words entail an open-ended length of time. That time-frame will rarely if ever coincide with your or my self-imposed, worldly time frames. I’ve found that my personal revelation most often arrives in the 11th hour, at the very last possible minute and second. At any point prior to receiving that revelation, if we become too discouraged, frustrated, or impatient, we will miss the most important thing we could ever have – the revelation that God has planned and set aside for us.

God knows what the exact best thing for you is – in detail. That best thing is designed for His ends. He has plans to prosper you (Jer. 29:11); and let’s not forget or omit the fact that the scripture forthrightly says there will also be a day of disaster for the wicked – those who haven’t committed to hearing, believing and doing God’s will. This is a stern warning stated as simple fact that even simple people can understand.

Some say the Bible is just too hard to understand. I say that the Word of God is actually very, very simple to understand. It boils down to a very simple choice for each of us - you, me, all of us. When we voluntarily and genuinely commit to Jesus Christ, accepting the gospel message as truth for our life, we have found and gained our true success. If we don’t, we can expect disaster. We find the ultimate, best and only “way, truth, and life” when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. It is then that we begin our journey of faith and enter a place of increasing revelation, wisdom and success.

Have you made that choice? Are you true to it daily, or do you venture off the tower too often? The good news is that Jesus has a specially reserved place for you on the tower. You can come back if you’ve strayed from your position. You deserve to be there - to maintain your rightful position on the Tower of Success. You will begin to plainly hear God’s plans for your life when you commit to standing watch on His rampart, His stronghold, His tower – as you patiently await and stand watch for His revelation and Word in His appointed time.

In Psalm 18:2, David says, “the Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold (also translated “tower”).

God created each of us for success. We must know what success is and where it can found. Stand watch with me, my friend. Make a bold, life-long commitment to standing firmly on the rock of Jesus Christ. There you will find your greatest rewards, standing strong on the Tower of Success.

Thank you Tim Darnell for this powerful message.

God Bless!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Let There Be Light

Ah, “let there be light!”
by Tim Darnell

Driving back from Colorado through New Mexico at night while my 6 fellow travelers slumbered, I was struck by the dizzying, dazzling presentation of millions of stars across the sky. I normally don’t see that many stars from our home in the city due to the interference of city lights. They’re useful, but at the same time they disguise much of God’s amazing celestial light show.
Caleb, my eight year old woke up and asked me what I was looking at, and I told him, “look what God has made and put in the skies. He knows the name of every one of those stars.”

Caleb said, “Oh, awesome! That’s a lot of stars! I wonder why we don’t have this many stars in Allen.”

“We actually do have the same number, Caleb. They’re just harder to see from where we live.

If we would turn down the lights a little bit, we would be able to see more of the stars He made. God sure is amazing.”

“Yes, He sure is, Dad.”

The Psalmist in Psalm 145 says, “Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. One generation will commend Your works to another; they will tell of Your mighty acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and I will meditate on Your wonderful works.” vv 3-6

“They will tell of the power of Your awesome works, and I will proclaim Your great deeds. They will celebrate Your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of Your righteousness.” vv 6-7

What are we sharing with our kids – our grandkids? That conversation with my son was simple, but it was rich in important truth and observation that can and should be handed down from generation to generation.

God is incredible. He made the stars. He made spider webs. He breathed life into a son in whom I could take tremendous delight and love so deeply, so many simple gifts, yet awesome miracles – each and every one.

Caleb gets God’s wonder – kids do. We adults often miss God’s presence and majesty due to an excess of man-made ‘stuff’. God’s splendor is everywhere, and for us to experience it better we’ve got to turn down our own noise – the self-concocted interferences that too often drown out His glory.

“Dad, I feel like we should say a prayer. We need to thank Him for all those stars.” Caleb folded his hands together and said a simple prayer. It felt good. We connected in a way that a dad and son can only do in God’s presence.

And I realized, amidst my many failures, that I had done one thing right; and that was to acknowledge the mighty, wonderful power of God to the next generation. I don’t know that I can do much better than that. Caleb is a great kid, and I’m sure that he’ll do the same with his kids.

“One generation will commend Your works to another; and they will tell of Your might acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and I will meditate on Your wonderful works.” 145:4

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Father, forgive us when we allow Your mighty works to be overlooked and missed because of our busy schedules, silly television shows, monotonous newspapers, production deadlines, or anything that clouds our view of You. We praise You and thank You, Lord, for Your incredible works and for who You are. Allow us to never miss and always share Your awesome glory with our sons and daughters. We recognize the ability to do that with them is a tremendous gift. In the name of Jesus we pray, amen.

God Bless!

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