“Grateful Friends” – Sermon Notes by Danny Leavitt at The Gathering in Aurora Colorado

Three Levels of Friendship

Association: Your Tribe

The Faith of a Roman Officer

John 15:5

When Jesus returned to Capernaum, a Roman officer came and pleaded with him, 6 “Lord, my young servant lies in bed, paralyzed and in terrible pain.”

 

7 Jesus said, “I will come and heal him.”

 

8 But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed. 9 I know this because I am under the authority of my superior officers, and I have authority over my soldiers. I only need to say, ‘Go,’ and they go, or ‘Come,’ and they come. And if I say to my slaves, ‘Do this,’ they do it.”

 

10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel! 11 And I tell you this, that many Gentiles will come from all over the world—from east and west—and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the feast in the Kingdom of Heaven. 12 But many Israelites—those for whom the Kingdom was prepared—will be thrown into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

 

13 Then Jesus said to the Roman officer, “Go back home. Because you believed, it has happened.” And the young servant was healed that same hour.

 

 

Loyalty: Trust

  1. confiding

Psalm 25:14 (TLB)

Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him. With them alone he shares the secrets of his promises.

 

Psalm 25:14 (MSG)

God-friendship is for God-worshipers; They are the ones he confides in.

 

Proverbs 17:17 ESV

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity

 

 

Affection: The Greatest Love

 

Proverbs 18:24

One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

 

Ruth 1:16 New International Version

But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.

 

 

John 15:13 NIV

13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. 16 You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. 17 This is my command: Love each other.

 

 

John 10:11

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.

 

1 John 3:16

By this we know what love is: Jesus laid down His life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.

 

In Closing

Matthew 7 (MSG)

 

A Simple Guide for Behavior

7 1-5 “Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults— unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging. It’s easy to see a smudge on your neighbor’s face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own. Do you have the nerve to say, ‘Let me wash your face for you,’ when your own face is distorted by contempt? It’s this whole traveling road-show mentality all over again, playing a holier-than-thou part instead of just living your part. Wipe that ugly sneer off your own face, and you might be fit to offer a washcloth to your neighbor.

 

7-11 “Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This isn’t a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we’re in. If your child asks for bread, do you trick him with sawdust? If he asks for fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate? As bad as you are, you wouldn’t think of such a thing. You’re at least decent to your own children. So don’t you think the God who conceived you in love will be even better?

 

12 “Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them. Add up God’s Law and Prophets and this is what you get.

 

Being and Doing

13-14 “Don’t look for shortcuts to God. The market is flooded with surefire, easygoing formulas for a successful life that can be practiced in your spare time. Don’t fall for that stuff, even though crowds of people do. The way to life—to God!—is vigorous and requires total attention…

 

 

21-23 “Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached the Message, we bashed the demons, our God-sponsored projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat. All you did was use me to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit. You’re out of here.’

 

24-25 “These words I speak to you are not incidental additions to your life, homeowner improvements to your standard of living. They are foundational words, words to build a life on. If you work these words into your life, you are like a smart carpenter who built his house on solid rock. Rain poured down, the river flooded, a tornado hit—but nothing moved that house. It was fixed to the rock.

 

26-27 “But if you just use my words in Bible studies and don’t work them into your life, you are like a stupid carpenter who built his house on the sandy beach. When a storm rolled in and the waves came up, it collapsed like a house of cards.”

 

28-29 When Jesus concluded his address, the crowd burst into applause. They had never heard teaching like this. It was apparent that he was living everything he was saying—quite a contrast to their religion teachers! This was the best teaching they had ever heard.

 

Philippians 1:3 (VOICE)

Whenever you cross my mind, I thank my God for you and for the gift of knowing you.

There’s land lords…and then there is The Land Lord…

Well…we’ve all been up since the crack of dawn this morning, even though it is Saturday 😦

We got an email yesterday evening stating that the land lord had ordered a Home Inspection for today at 11 a.m.

Now, understand…our house is not magazine perfect…after all, we LIVE in it and as anyone with children and pets knows…your home is not picture perfect!  But, we do hold with the old saying, cleanliness is next to Godliness!  So, it is cleaner than some homes I’ve seen.

Although the home inspection is solely for checking the electrical, the plumbing, the drywall, the roof, heater, installation, and most of all,the structure…my husband thought we should “clean up a bit” as well.

To all of you who know my husband Mike well, you already realize that he could be the next poster boy for MR CLEAN! LOL!  But seriously, he was right.  Even though the inspection is not to see how clean the renters are, I’m sure the land lord will ask the inspector about the condition of the inside and about the housekeeping skills of his renters.

The same holds true of our Land Lord!  If we are Believers, we need to be ready for an “inspection” at any moment!  Our Land Lord is God Almighty, along with His Son, Jesus Christ.  The Inspector is the Holy Spirit.  Take a look below at the following passages….

This passage talks about, “The Land Lord”….  Look at Matthew 24:46-46  Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing…(taking care of things.) Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.  (parenthesis, mine.)

This passage talks about “The Inspector”….  John 14:26 says,  But the Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will help you remember everything that I have told you.

We all need a daily “clean up”…in the physical, and in the Spiritual.  So…when the “Inspector” comes and shows you some dirty corners in your heart, allow Him to help you get rid of those things, and get your Spiritual house in order; for no man knows the day nor the hour when Jesus, our Land Lord will come and take us home.

I want the “Inspector” to give a good report to my “Land Lord”!  How about you?

Anita

DON’T FLY OFF THE HANDLE…

I think we’ve all heard that expression at one time or another in our life. But…what does it mean?  I know…because my dad used to tell me this all the time!  He said it, and then would tell a little story to go along with it–an illustration.

When someone says, “Don’t fly off the handle…”, it simply means, don’t lose your temper, don’t do, or say something you will later regret; or as one of my friends tells her sassy kids…”Your mouth’s writing a check that your butt can’t cash!”  Learn to control your self!!

I was reminded of all this again this morning when my nine-year old woke up in a foul mood.  His class is going roller skating after school today, so he was all hyped up.  He couldn’t go to sleep last night; yet, at 5:15 this a.m. he was already up and had his TV going!

I of course made him turn it off, come downstairs, and get ready for school–although he’d gotten up an hour early.

Due to lack of sleep, and too much stimulation anticipating the skate trip, he was a bit mouthy.  I let him get away with it a few times, but then he got worse.  Finally, I said I’d like to tell you a story that my dad used to tell me when I was mouthy and couldn’t control my temper…  This got his attention, so I went on.

I share the story now with you…

There once live three flies.  They loved coming into the house through the small hole in the screen door…especially when the lady of the house was frying Bologna!  The smell would permeate the air, and waft through the house and out the open door.  The smell drew many flies to the door and they would cluster themselves on the screen, trying to get in…but only three of them knew about the small hole!

One day, these three flies caught that delicious smell, and went inside through that small convenient hole in the screen.  They flew over the pan of Bologna…and soon all three landed on a piece and began to feast.

When the first fly was full, he taxied out onto the handle of the skillet, and got ready to fly off.  But…he fell over dead.

The second fly didn’t see his friend lying dead there on the counter; he still was in rapture, thinking about the wonderful feast he’d just had.  As he taxied out onto the handle and was ready to fly away, he got to the end of the handle, flexed his wings a bit…and fell over dead.

The third fly was so full by now!  His tummy was bulging from all the Bologna he ate!  He was in a euphoric state as he jumped on the handle…walked out to the edge…flexed his wings, and got ready to fly.  But before he could…he fell over dead!

The moral of the story?  ….DON’T FLY OFF THE HANDLE WHEN YOU’RE FULL OF BOLOGNA!

Good advice dad!  I need to remember this more often!

Anita

PILGRIMS & THANKSGIVING: A TIME OF MOURNING?

Here’s one from our own Lee Pierce!  This guy is always reading…and in the process, I end up getting educated! 🙂

He has submitted some information here that I was not aware of.  Take a look…. -anita

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PILGRIMS & THANKSGIVING: A TIME OF MOURNING?

I’ve been reading up on what I thought I knew about the Pilgrims at Plymouth settlement. Their courage has always intrigued me and after I read a damaging quote about them recently, I sought to find out more. The quote comes by way of Seattle public school officials back in November of 2007: Seattle school officials are telling teachers that Thanksgiving actually is a time of “mourning” since it represents “500 years of betrayal [of Native Americans].”

I was first shocked that I never heard about this statement at the time it occurred. And upon reading further, I came to agree with at least some of the sentiment expressed. Clearly, Native Americans were treated harshly and often unfairly by our government at many points as the nation expanded across the continent. But were the first Pilgrims part of that; did the Pilgrims treat the Native Americans harshly? I wanted to find out.

Film critic/writer Michael Medved states that for the Pilgrims to be characterized as people fleeing persecution in Europe only to come to the new World and become oppressors of Native Americans themselves “is wrong on every count.” Medved’s position on this is that the Pilgrims were not fleeing religious persecution or the Church of England at all. He states correctly that, in fact, the Pilgrims had been living for more than a decade in religion-tolerant Holland. Rather, the Pilgrims were fleeing social seduction—“worrying that their children would be corrupted by the materialistic Dutch culture.” Their fears must have been dearly held given what they had to endure to cross the ocean in 1620 and attempt to carve out a way of life for themselves in an unknown and hostile land. At the first Thanksgiving, a three-day feast, some 90 natives were present along with 53 colonists (nearly half of the original Pilgrim group died in the first year).

If you want to know more about these early settlers and their intent, I found a wonderful web site, www.mayflowerhistory.com, that you should explore. On this site one can find original source materials regarding the Pilgrims, including several journals written by some of them. If you are willing to invest some time reading through their journals—which are a bit ponderous at times, given the long sentence structures and some archaic verbiage—you will be rewarded with an inside look at the lives of these hardy, courageous Pilgrims.

And while the Seattle educators sought to portray the Pilgrims as those who would steal the natives’ corn, unearth and defile their graves, and ransack their houses, the journals tell a much different story. Regarding the graves: the Pilgrims did find and open a mound which they finally determined to be a grave site. But rather than defile the site, the Pilgrims acted honorably: “because we deemed them [the mounds] graves…left them untouched, because we thought it would be odious to [the natives] to ransack their sepulchers.” The Pilgrims came upon a completely abandoned native village in which they did find some corn and other edibles to which they helped themselves but with the intent that, if they could find the native owners of the corn, they would trade with them and “satisfy [pay] them for their corn….”

What about Squanto, the helpful Native American who helped the Pilgrims immeasurably? His real name was Tisquantum and, incredibly, he was a former member of that abandoned village the Pilgrims had come upon. His story is an astounding tale and his role in helping the Pilgrims sounds like a God-thing to me. He had grown up a child in that village and was captured by men who sold him into slavery in Spain. He later was taught some English and was helped and freed by Spanish monks, and he then made his way to England and eventually back to his village. Unfortunately, at some point, the entire village was wiped out by disease (possibly smallpox). A few months after the Pilgrims landed, on March 16, 1621 according to the journals, Squanto “boldly” walked alone into the Pilgrims’ camp in Patuxet in what is now Massachusetts, and introduced himself in English and told them the story of the “extraordinary plague” which killed every man, woman, and child four years prior. Among his many contributions in aid of the Pilgrims, Squanto was instrumental in helping negotiate a friendly trade agreement with Massasoit, the influential chief of another local tribe and who became very friendly and helpful to the settlers, also.

I quite liked Medved’s interpretation of Squanto’s appearance and the great contributions he made to assist the Pilgrims in adapting to their new land. “Against all odds, [Squanto] proved to be the single human being on the continent best-suited to help the struggling settlers, since he spoke English and had already embraced Christianity,” according to Medved.

The Plymouth settlement never became a major colony—the nearby Massachusetts Bay colony which came later, grew much faster, and swallowed up the descendants of the Plymouth colony by the late 1600s. Medved, however, lauds the original colony settlers for their great influence on the nation’s character. As evidenced so often in their journals, these Pilgrims were convinced God was protecting them and, as Medved puts it, “not to grant special privileges, but to impose special responsibilities.”

Many of these journals were compiled by a Pilgrim settler who signs himself as “G. Mourt.”  Mr. Mourt prefaces his intent in the publication of his journals by stating his “desire of carrying the Gospel of Christ, into [these] foreign parts, amongst those people who as yet have had no knowledge, nor taste of God….” Certainly, with God’s help, great things can be done. And, as Medved puts it, thinking back to the Seattle public school officials quoted above, the Pilgrims “understood that people of every culture and every era can gain more from gratitude than from guilt.” A “time of mourning?” Hardly. Enjoy your blessings this Thanksgiving holiday, just as the Pilgrims did, and remember to give thanks, as they did, to the One who makes it all possible.

Lee Pierce

HERE AM I! SEND ME!

Play “Here Am I”
on Amazon Music

I was listening to an old CD I found yesterday by, Mercy Me.  The song below should really be the cry of every Believer, as we see all the lost around us.
It used to be that America sent missionaries to foreign lands…now missionaries are being sent here to the United States.  Jesus and His Salvation do not seem to be a part of America anymore.  Many people, here in the U.S. only know the name of Jesus as used in cursing.  They have no idea that He can save them from their sin.  They wallow in depression and “live” hopeless, desperate lives because Believers have not proclaimed the Name above all names…the Name of Jesus!  Like the song says…”What a shame!”
Let’s ask God to open our eyes to see the lost around us, then let us say to God…
HERE AM I!  SEND ME!
“Here Am I”

On the other side of the world
She stands on the ocean shore
Gazing at the heavens she wonders
Is there something more
Never been told the name of Jesus
She turns and walks away
What a shame

Just across the street in your hometown
Leaving from his nine to five
Gazing down the road he wonders
Is this all there is to life
Never been told the name of Jesus
He continues on his way
What a shame

[Chorus:]
Whom shall I send
Who will go for me
To the ends of the earth
Who will rise up for the King
Here am I send me
Here am I send me

Whether foreign land or neighbors
Everyone’s the same
Searching for the answers
That lie within your name
I want to proclaim the love of Jesus
In all I do and say
Unashamed

[Chorus]

[Bridge:]
How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news
Proclaiming peace and your salvation

 

Mercy Me

GOD’S HEDGE OF PROTECTION…

I pulled the following from my Promise Box this morning, and wanted to share this thought with you….   When things get rough today, just remember…God has a hedge of protection around you, and your’s;  He has put His  angels in charge of taking care of you! -anita

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“He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.  They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.” -Psalm 91:11-12

Here is the prayer that accompanied the verse…

Help us to always sense YOUR presence LORD, not only in times of trouble..but in every moment!.

anita

THE OIL AND THE AWL…

It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; -Proverbs 133:2

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Take a look at the above verse….  Oil in the Bible depicts the Holy Spirit.  Notice how the oil was on the hair of the head, then it went onto Aaron’s beard, then it flowed down his garments; it never touched his flesh.

The inference I see here is that the Holy Spirit cannot use you when you are walking in a fleshly manner…doing your own thing…not serving God.

Now, take a look at Exodus 21:5 and 6.

And if the servant shall plainly say, I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free:

Then his master shall bring him unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or unto the door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an awl; and he shall serve him for ever.

These verses tell us that if we truly love our Master (God), then we will want to stay with Him forever.  He will make His mark on us,,,folks will see a difference in us and know that we belong to Jesus!

The awl in the ear lobe of the bondservent is a picture that he has chosen to only listen to the words of his Master, and to do his bidding only.

I don’t know about you, but I no longer want to walk my own way…I want people to see a difference in me!  I want God to pour out His Holy Spirit upon me, and use me in a special way!  I want Him to put an awl in my ear…make His presence so obvious that folks will see a change in me.   I want to only listen to the words of my Master-Jesus, and follow His bidding!

Listen to HIM.  Let His words get into your mind and your heart…then your hands and your feet will only do His will!

Anita

Lunch With Jesus Pt. 2 Cultivate Your Relationship with Jesus – Sermon Notes by Pastor Danny Leavit

(Last Week:  Jesus is the Path and the Destination. THE WALK IS YOURS)
Context
The First and Last Words

Luke 2:49 (NKJV)

“Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?”

 

Luke 23:46  NASB

And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.”

 

Jesus Dispels Myths

Matthew 6 (NIV)

The Secret Giver

6 “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.

 

4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

 

The Secret Prayer

6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

 

Secret Fasting

16 “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting.

 

You Have Hear It Said

Matthew 5:43-44

You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,

 

Not Small Talk

Matthew 6:31-34 (NIV)

31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

 

John 6 (NIV)

26 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. 27 Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”

 

Luke 9:23 NIV
Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.

 

 

Jesus Encourages

 

  1. Self-Inspection

 

Luke 6:39

And He spoke a parable to them: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into the ditch? 40 A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher. 41 And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the plank in your own eye? 42 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the plank that is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck that is in your brother’s eye.

 

  1. Check Your Heart Condition

Luke 6: 43ff

 

43 “For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.44 For every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush. 45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.

 

Jesus Sends

 

  1. More Fish Please!

Your Purpose

 

Matthew 4:19

“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”

 

Matthew 7:13-14

Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

 

  1. More Fruit Please!

 

John 15:1

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

 

5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.

 

 

25 “Though I have been speaking figuratively, a time is coming when I will no longer use this kind of language but will tell you plainly about my Father. 26 In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. 27 No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”

 

29 Then Jesus’ disciples said, “Now you are speaking clearly and without figures of speech. 30 Now we can see that you know all things and that you do not even need to have anyone ask you questions. This makes us believe that you came from God.”

 

31 “Do you now believe?” Jesus replied. 32 “A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.

 

33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

 

Jesus Equips

Water Please, No Ice. 

God sent the Son. The son sent the Spirit

John 4:13-14

13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

 

John 7:37-39

If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.'” But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

 

John 16:7  New Living Translation

But in fact, it is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you.

 

John 15:26

“When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me. 27 And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WASH ME IN YOUR MERCY!

I know sometimes it’s hard to confess your faults…your ‘wrong doings’…your sin; but whether or not we confess our sins, be it to God, or to others…we are all still guilty!

I share this with you now, and ask for your earnest prayers of supplication to God on my behalf.

My mouth gets the better of me…

Every day I promise myself and God that I will do better tomorrow, but for me, tomorrow never seems to come.  I do well for a while, and then I fall.  I think the Apostle Paul called that “our besetting sin.”  I’m not alone in this boat…we all have a besetting sin.

For some of us, it is gossip.  Others have a hard time telling the truth–they feel the need to embellish and exaggerate events…in other words, they lie.  Some of us have a drinking problem.  Maybe smoking is your vice.  Or how about those addicted to drugs?  Then there is lust–I bet some of you can raise your hand to that plague.  Whatever ‘plague’ you have, you can be sure that Satan knows what it is and he will cause you to fall every day!

My point is, whatever “besetting sin” we possess…it does not come from God!  If we are saved, HE ABIDES…LIVES in us.  Every time we sin…we suject Jesus to our foul, evil acts.  Can you see Jesus doing the things we do?  Lying…stealing…cheating…shooting up…drunk in the gutter…swearing and cursing…murder in His heart….   NO!  Neither can I; but we subject His precious spirit to endure such things when we commit these acts!

But…take heart!  Jesus knows the darkest acts of our lives…the ones we did yesterday, the ones we will do today, and even how we will fall short tomorrow.  But He doesn’t turn His back on us in disgust, instead He reaches out to us in all of His kindness and love and reminds us that He can forgive if we but ask!  Max Lucado put it this way, “…from the basin of His grace, He scoops a palm full of mercy and washes away our sins.”

When you fall today, don’t wallow in the condemnation Satan sends your way.  Instead, let Jesus remind you of His grace, and wash you in His mercy!

Anita

FACE TO FACE…WE SHALL BEHOLD HIM!

And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads. -Revelation 22:4

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As I read the above verse this morning, I was reminded of a poem in one of my old books.  I share it now with you…  -anita

Crossing the Bar

Sunset and evening star,
      And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
      When I put out to sea,
   But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
      Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
      Turns again home.
   Twilight and evening bell,
      And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
      When I embark;
   For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place
      The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
      When I have crost the bar.
*******
Cant wait for that day! -anita