Hold me up until my faith in you returns

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God, if I had a voice that was strong enough, I would declare your glory to the stars. If I had feet that were robust enough, I would climb the tallest mountain and raise a banner of love for the world to see.  If I had arms that were long enough, I would embrace the world with your magnitude. Give me eyes that see you in everything. Give me ears that hear you in all things. Though the world rebels against you, not wanting anyone to tell them what to do, I will defend you and reveal the part of you they do not understand ~ that you, their Maker, loves them so much you will spend their life running after them. They are falling into the mire and do not know it. They are obeying Satan and do not realize it. Waken them, Lord, with your magnificence and envelop them with love that goes deep into their souls and will not let them go. Give them new eyes to see you, new ears to hear you, a new heart that loves you back.

Lord, as hard as I try, sometimes I begin to doubt you. I think I am not the only one who goes through this. I suppose if Satan weren’t afraid of me and my relationship with you, he wouldn’t attack me with doubts. Forgive me when I succumb to the doubts he puts in my mind. Though sometimes he kidnaps my mind, keep him from having my heart and soul too. At such times, help me to at least hope. Hold me up until my faith in you returns.

Thank you for opportunities to suffer for you. Your Word says the righteous will always be persecuted. Take me down paths where I know persecution will travel toward me. May I never “play it safe”. Open up doors where Satan thinks he rules so I may have the privilege of proving him weak and wrong. Lord, you made me your bride. How blessed is that! Oh, the depths of the relationship you want with me. Thank you, my Lord, my God, the reason for my being.

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-INTREPID MEN OF GOD.  PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE traveled everywhere he was not wanted.  The honest ones needed Jesus, but did not know it.  The egotistical ones were jealous of Jesus and did everything they good to beat and destroy his ambassador.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://bit.ly/3fw2mlA 

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Give me souls or else I die

00-PAUL COVER-Medium-Lord God, you are worthy of all praise. The mountains tremble at your presence. The seas swallow up torrents of rain at the mention of your name. The whirlwinds roar at the thought of their Creator.  The stars zoom through the cosmos at seeing your glory.  The tiny baby coos with your gentleness, young men stretch their muscles with your toughness, the ladies sing with the strains of your effervescence. The whole universe praises you. My heart, my soul, my being reaches out for you.

My soul soars with the gladness of you, the love of you, the excitement of you. What more do I need? It seems so trite to ask you to help me pass a test, to win a contest, or get a promotion or buy an amazing item of clothing. I need none of that. All I need is you. If I am in the chasm of a prison someday, may I remember I am most blessed because I have you. So, I say thank you for everything I have and everything I do not have. I have enough. All I need is souls.  Give me souls, dear Lord, or else I die.

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE searched everywhere for souls who truly wanted to be saved and did not take for granted they were.  He searched year after year, place after place, soul after soul.  He was driven.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this……….https://bit.ly/3fw2mlA

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All the kinds of happiness

The scripture for today, February 26 (2/26), is Ecclesiastes 2:26 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-Titus-Cover-Medium“To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge, and happiness, but to the sinner, he gives the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it over to the one who pleases God. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.”

Are you happy regardless of how much wealth you do or do not have? Do you require things in order to be happy? Are you always out shopping around for new clothing, a new car, a new computer or television? Solomon, who wrote the above scripture, was the wealthiest man in the world, but he found it to be meaningless, a chasing after the wind. In another place in Ecclesiastes (5:10), he said that a man loving money never has enough.

Indeed, centuries later, the highly educated and intelligent apostle Paul, who did not own a home or much of anything else, explained his happiness: “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want” (Philippians 4:11b-12).

If you lost everything tomorrow, would you panic? Or would you use God’s wisdom and knowledge to create a new happiness?  Might you look around and begin doing something you have always wanted to do but were too tied down with things to do it?  If you lost everything tomorrow, might it bring a new freedom to you or paralyze you?

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0-Titus-Cover-Lg ThumbTITUS; THE ARTISTICRAT was born of privilege in Antioch of Anatolia where only the influential lived.  He was well educated, had a good career, married, had children.  But it was all marred by a father who blamed Titus for his mother’s death.  Nothing worked until decades later when he was made a slave.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://bit.ly/3mAmwPb

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Persecuted? Yes.  Frightened? Yes. Cowering? Never.

The scripture for today, February 16 (2/16), is 2nd Thessalonians 2:16 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-Stephen-Cover-Kindle-Medium“May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.”

Who were these people the apostle Paul was writing? They were suffering people. 

Physically they were suffering.  Some in their group had even been killed for their faith. Mentally they were suffering.  Would they be next? Would it be worth everything they were going through?

Spiritually they were struggling. The apostle Paul, who wrote this, had been through such struggles many times himself. He wanted to make sure their faith would not waver.

How? By praying that their persecution would stop? At no time in the Bible do we have an account of Christians pray that the persecution stop. What did they pray for? Boldness.

They could be bold if they knew Jesus Christ loved them personally. They could be bold if they knew God the Father loved them personally. They could be bold with eternal encouragement, strength.

“Just keep doing what you’ve been doing,” he told them.  “With the strength God gives you, keep doing good deeds and spreading the Word.”

Persecuted? Yes.  Frightened? Yes. Cowering? Never.

How about your life?

God’s encouragement never ceases. It is always there. There when you feel alone, when you feel forsaken, when you are frightened, when you feel helpless, when you feel hopeless.

God gives good hope. Sometimes things in your life may be going so badly you have trouble having faith in God. But you can still hope. The candle of your faith may be flickering, but your hope can still be a flaming hope, a large hope, a good hope.

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00-Stephen-Cover-Kindle-ThumbnailSTEPHEN: UNLIKELY MARTYR ran for his life when his best friend was crucified because of their prank against the city’s goddess. No matter where he lived and what he tried to get people to believe in the one true God, things seemed to backfire. His university turned against him. The Olympic Games turned against him.  His fellow craftsmen turned against him.  Then he met Jesus. To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://bit.ly/2XBFXvJ

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Do your best, Timothy. Do your best.

00-PAUL COVER-Medium-The scripture for today, February 15 (2/15), is 2nd Timothy 2:15 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.”

“Do your best,” Paul told a younger co-worker.  “Do your best.”

This was an apostle speaking. This was Paul who had endured multiple beatings with rods and lashings with whips. This was Paul who no one could stop.

He had endured floods and snowstorms, hunger and robbers on the road. Still, no one could stop him. He endured shipwrecks and even treading water a day and night in the sea. Nothing could stop him.e \

It seems with Paul, it was never enough. He was driven. When he was stoned and presumed dead, he got up and went back into the city! When he was imprisoned, he defied the magistrates who put him there and sang his sermons to the other prisoners. Nothing could stop him. Nothing could shut him up.

When he wrote this, he was now in prison. He had done his best. Now it was time for the next generation. He was handing the torch over to Timothy and the others.

“Do your best, Timothy. Don’t let them stop you. Never let them stop you. They are lost and don’t know it. Tell them, Timothy. Keep telling them, no matter how terribly they treat you. Keep telling them and keep telling them. Don’t stop, Timothy. Do your best.

“Some will stop what they are doing and listen to you. They will turn their life around. They will be there with you when it is time to be presented to God. They will be there with you, and with you they will say, “I did my best.”

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE.  I sometimes wonder what kind of child Paul was.  I tend to think when his parents punished him, he got up and immediately did the offending thing again.  Why do I think that?  Because that is what he did as a missionary preacher.  Pagan priests beat him. But he got up and preached again.  Jewish priests lashed him. But he got up and preached again.  Governments imprisoned him. But he got up and preached again. What kind of stuff was Paul made of?  To READ THIS BEST SELLER, click a book cover or paste this:  https://bit.ly/UnstoppablePaul

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How can I touch your holiness?

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

00-PAUL COVER-Medium-“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? 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 that 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?  I am weak and need you.

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE.  No one could stop him from cursing, jailing and torturing Christians.  Then Jesus got hold of him and he joined the camp of the enemy.  Once again, no one could stop him.  Not any of the beatings he endured, and going hungry, and being thrown into the sea and being stripped by thieves and being stoned until he was supposed to be dead.  For years he dared anyone to stop him from telling people the truth about Jesus and save their souls.  People hated him for it.  But always, in the midst of torture, he would shout, “Jesus!  This is for you!”  To  BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://bit.ly/3fw2mlA

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Hyperactive Paul

The scripture for today, January 29 (1/29), is Colossians 1:29 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

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“To this end I labor, struggling with all His energy which so powerfully works in me.”


Wow! Hyperactive Paul, Paul who preached even while in jail, Paul who went back to preaching after he’d just been beaten and told not to, Paul with the “A-type personality” said he got all that energy from Jesus Christ (see verse 28).

Who provides your energy? It depends on what you are being driven to do. It depends on what consumes you. It depends on what you’re spending your time doing and what is on your mind all the time.

Think about it today.

On what things do you use the energy of Jesus?

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-INTREPID MEN OF GOD:  PAUL THE UNSTOPPABLE.  One of the most in-demand books I have written.  No one could stop him.  Each time he was beaten, he called out amidst the stinging pain, “Jesus!  This is for you!”  Even as an old man, formerly athletic and now broken and bent over in pain, people longed to be in his presence.  He was actually an apostle and had survived so much.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://bit.ly/UnstoppablePaul

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The God of Second Chances

00-PAUL COVER-Medium-God, you love every one of your children and we love you in return. But sometimes someone wanders away. You need to leave the rest of us behind to find the lost one and that is fine with me. I will be okay while you’re gone. Oh, me? You mean me? You want me to go for you, and find your missing child? Ah, let me think a moment. Are you sure?  Ummm…  Yes, yes! If you will fill my spirit with your kind of love, then I must go. I will not be able to resist the search. Help me find the lost soul in time. Give me courage to go where ever I must go. And, Lord, help that lost one keep praising you until I arrive.  Me too. I will keep praising you.

Ah, my Lord, I grow so impatient sometimes, waiting for my time to join you ~ impatient over days and months and years. How you must laugh because you work in decades and centuries and millenniums.  Thank you for time.  All things change and all things will eventually pass away.  With time, the consequences of my sins eventually pass away. You give me an opportunity to try again. You are the God of second chances. I will forever bend my knee to you in the shimmering gratitude that permeates my soul.

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE.  He had to change sides to obey God.  He’s been wrong.  He had to admit it. It took sudden blindness and a voice out of heaven to stop him and make him turn around.  He spent the rest of his life doing the same for others. Constantly stopping people, making them think of what they are doing with their lives, then turning them around to march in victory toward the gates of heaven.  Was it convenient?  They beat him, starved him, imprisoned him, lashed him, stoned him ~ but nothing stopped him.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this……….  https://bit.ly/UnstoppablePaul

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My soul is overwhelmed

The scripture for today, December 22 (12/22), is 1st Samuel 12:22 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

00-PAUL COVER-Medium-“For the sake of his great name, the Lord will not reject his people, because the Lord was pleased to make you his own.”

Among all the pretend gods that people have worshiped, there has never been one who made people because he wanted someone to love and wanted them to be his children. Islam, for example, teaches Allah made man to have someone to worship him. Allah has 99 names, but none of them is Love. It is the same with other purported gods. Buddhism and Hinduism have gods with no personalities at all; they are just the essence of the universe. So sad.

Oh, how much mankind misses by not opening up to the one and only God.  He wants you to be his child! He wants to lavish you with his love.

God made you because God is Love.  Love must have someone to love. That’s you, dear friend. That’s you!

Amazing love of God. It pleases him to make you his own. It pleases him! You the lowly. You the weak. You the inconsistent. You the sinner.

Let your soul be elevated by the God of Love. Let your heart be warmed. Let your spirit be touched with eternity. Then lift up your voice and shout, “My soul is overwhelmed!”

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00-PAUL COVER-Thumbnail-PAUL: THE UNSTOPPABLE.  He imprisoned, tortured, and killed Christians. He hated Christians and he hated Jesus.  Then it happened.  He switched sides and spent the rest of his life trying to make it up to Jesus for treating his people as he had  Walk with Paul for 45 years as he endures the imprisonments and tortures he used to dish out on others.  Listen as he is beaten yet again and cries lout amidst the burning pain, “Jesus!  This is for you!” To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this……….  https://bit.ly/UnstoppablePaul

 

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Follow your heart

The scripture for today, December 3 (12/3), is Romans 12:3 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-Titus-Cover-Medium“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.”

The context of this verse is members of a congregation getting along with each other. He explains that each person is given certain gifts such as serving, teaching, encouraging, contributing, and so on (12:6-8).

Within congregations, disagreements can come about because one person has an idea about a good work, and someone else has a different idea about it, and still, someone else says some other good work should be done. All sincerely believe their way is the best form of outreach, and each wants  a committee to be formed to carry it out. Then egos tend to get involved.

Perhaps the best way to judge whether you are thinking of yourself more highly than you ought, is to ask yourself this:  If I moved away or if I died, would this congregation survive without me? Of course, it would.  Keep praying, Lord, help me see myself as others do.

It does not matter if you can get a committee formed to help you.  If your heart is set on a certain good work, you can always do it alone. You do not need a committee.  If your heart is truly set, stop waiting for others whose hearts may be on something else. If your heart is truly set, get out and do it.

Perhaps others will see your results and want to join you later. Perhaps not. Just keep following your heart. Be true to your heart. Be true to the souls that will be helped because you got out there and just did it.

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0-Titus-Cover-Lg ThumbINTREPID MEN OF GOD:  TITUS THE ARISTOCRAT lived in Antioch in today’s Turkey, a city for the elite where all spoke Latin.  His arbitration skills were so good the Apostle Paul sent him on arbitration missions to Corinth in Greece, Crete, and Dalmatia. Read this historical novel as though you were there and watch him solve the unsolvable, even to getting the “false apostle” to leave the Corinthians alone.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this………. http://bit.ly/TitusAristocrat-8

 

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