Wednesday 2/20 ~ The Turncoat

The scripture for today, February 20 (2/20), is Galatians 2:20 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me.”

The apostle Paul wrote this. He had been an angry, spiteful, and hateful man in his younger days. He had been a terrorist and had even declared holy jihad against Christians.  He had gone around the country rounding up Christians, torturing them to get them to renounce Jesus, then sending them either to prison or to their death. He hated Christians.

But once Jesus got his attention and Paul realized he was persecuting those who could tell him the true way to heaven, he switched sides. Jesus had to do it himself because all the Christians were afraid of him. Then Paul, so to speak, crucified his old self, and let Jesus and his words live in him instead.  All the tremendous energy that he had used for hate was now used for love, and he turned his part of the world upside down for Christ.

Is there someone in your life or that you know of who is angry, spiteful, and hateful? Dare to talk to that person and tell them how much God loves them. S/he will argue with you and maybe even be meaner to you than ever. But when things calm down, try saying something else, perhaps about what Jesus did or said once in his life.

It may take you months or years. S/he will be curious why you keep coming back when s/he is being so mean to you. And eventually, this same person who uses all his enormous energy in a negative way, just might turn that same enormous energy around and use it for Jesus in a great way.

Give it a try. If you are crucified with Christ, then nothing anyone says can hurt you because your ego is dead. Keep trying to reach this enemy of Jesus. Keep trying to help this person become Jesus’ friend and defender.

You may be the only one in his or her world with the courage to do it. Keep trying. Cry in private after the insults, then take a deep breath and try once again. And once again. And again. Never stop. Who knows?

Image result for "Buy the book"PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE had to be stopped. He was on the wrong side. It took Jesus, personally, to stop him. He switched sides, then became unstoppable for Jesus. Each time he was beaten or lashed because of his stubbornness, he cried out, “Jesus! This is for You!”.  To BUY NOW, click a picture or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2JeHZZg
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Sunday 2/17 ~ Lose anything important lately?

The scripture for today, February 17 (2/17), is 1st John 2:17 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-Titus-Cover-Lg Thumb“The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.”

Have you lost anything very important to you lately? Has it left you feeling empty?

Were you injured and cannot participate in a certain sport anymore? Are your bones growing old and you have to get around in a wheelchair?  Did you lose a savings or part of your income and no longer can buy fancy clothes, a shiny car, a big house?  Did you miss out on being a chairman for your committee or official for your community and all the importance that comes with it?

The previous verse in the KJV says there are three basic types of sins: Lust of the flesh and eye, and pride.

Is your loss devastating to you? Do you now feel worthless?  Do you sometimes even have fleeting thoughts that life is no longer worth living?

Or, perhaps you recently obtained your heart’s desire. Were you satisfied? Or have you already begun to look higher, wanting a little more?

Take a deep look at yourself?  Do you think you will ever be truly satisfied?  What are your cravings? Are they all that important?  Are they all that valuable?

Only one thing can ever give you what you truly crave ~ doing the gentle will of God. He is your Creator and he knows what will make you happy. Then you can have all you ever craved for in his world ~ forever.

Image result for "Buy the book"TITUS; THE ARISTOCRAT whose father built a mansion and had the highest position in Antioch was never happy.  Titus tried to imitate his father, then met Paul. To BUY NEW, click a picture or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2Ncd0km

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Tuesday 2/12 ~ God, the Gentleman

The scripture for today, February 12 (2/12), is 2nd Timothy 2:12 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-REV-Cover-No Logo-KINDLE-lg-thumbnail“If we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us.”

God loves us but never forces us to love him. He has given us a beautiful world to live in full of excitement and challenges and comforts. He has given us family and friends. He has given us his Son to take our punishment for our sins so we can live with him in his home ~ heaven. He is constantly calling to us, “I love you! Come to me for safety!”

But being the Gentleman that he is, he never forces himself on us. Instead, he lets us lead the way so to speak. If we don’t want to listen to God’s words, God doesn’t want to listen to our words. If we don’t want to spend extra time on God, God doesn’t want to spend extra time on us. If we don’t want anything to do with God in this life, he will not want anything to do with us in the next life.

He never forces us. But oh, how he weeps when we walk away from him.

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Monday 2/11 ~ How’s your heart today?

The scripture for today, February 11 (2/11), is Ecclesiastes 2:11 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

Pearls Cover-KINDLE-Thumbnail“Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind, nothing was gained under the sun.”

King Solomon wrote this. He tried everything to bring deep happiness and satisfaction into his life. He had both the money and power to do it. He tried writing books and songs. He tried having a thousand women. He tried working hard with his hands. He tried building big fancy buildings with grand gardens to surround them. He tried investing his money and becoming the richest man in the world. Nothing worked. He wandered through all his luxury feeling empty. He still couldn’t achieve the deep happiness he longed for.

There was a book published a few years ago entitled, How to Want What You Have. Is the deep contented happiness you crave always just around the corner? If you could just get that promotion, if you could just get married, if you could just get a pay raise, if you could just be on the winning team, if you could just have children, if you could just get that next house or car or….

Always IF. Is the problem that, once you attain what you believe will bring you happiness, you just want the next promotion, the next pay raise, a different marriage partner, the next house, no children, the next car?

What was Solomon’s conclusion? He suspected what it is in 3:11: “God set eternity in the hearts of man.” In other words, there is a God-shaped emptiness in man’s heart. Then, after he had tried everything his own way, he had only one choice left. He spelled it out in the final few verses of his writing: True happiness comes from a heartfelt relationship with God.

How’s your heart today?

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Sunday 2/10 ~ Worship and the devil

The scripture for today, February 10 (2/10), is James 2:10 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-“Out of the same mouth comes praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be.”

Do we pray on Sunday and curse on Monday? Do we sing on Sunday and lie on Monday? Do we recite a scripture on Sunday and mock someone on Monday?

On the other hand, do we use this as an excuse not to go to church and worship? Do we refuse to attend because there are hypocrites in the church?

Do we refuse to go to work because there are hypocrites there who talk behind the boss’s back? Do we refuse to go to school because there are hypocrites there who would skip school if they could? Do we refuse to sit for two hours in a boring airport because there are hypocrites there smuggling things in their suitcases? Do we refuse to go to sporting events because there are hypocrites there who would literally “kill the umpire” if they could?

Even Jesus had a hypocrite among his 12 Apostles ~ Judas. That didn’t stop him from doing what was needed to save us from hell.

In a sense we are all hypocrites because we go to church and sing songs about giving everything for Jesus, then we go home and don’t. Or we sing songs about going into all the world and teaching the gospel, then we go home and don’t. Or we talk about the importance of praying for everyone around us and their loved ones, then we go home and don’t.

Perhaps Jesus was the biggest hypocrite of them all because he, who never, ever sinned, took the blame for your sins and went through excruciating body and soul death in your place. Oh, my Lord Jesus, how can I worship you enough? How can I thank you enough? How can my spirit touch your holiness? Get Satan away from me, for I am weak and need you.

Image result for "Buy the book"PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE was a great hypocrite, but he did not even realize it. He tortured and killed Christians in the name of God. It took complete blindness to get him to wake up to his own hypocrisy and do what God really told him to do. Then he became unstoppable.  To BUY NOW, click a picture or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2SHeQPg

 

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