Monday, July 9, 2018


"... we may ..."

"In Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence."
 -- Ephesians 3:12

Isn't that exciting to know? In Christ Jesus and through faith in Christ Jesus we -- you and me -- all believers -- may approach God -- The Creator -- with freedom and confidence.

Nehemiah as cupbearer to King Artaxerxes could not approach the king without being asked. And what about Esther? Even though she was made queen to King Xerxes, she was not allowed to approach the presence of the King unless she was asked by him to be in his presence.

"... any man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned the king had but one law: that he be put to death. The only exception to this is for the king to extend the gold scepter to him and spare his life." -- Esther 4:11 

The one time she was asked to do this she tried to get out of it but Mordecai reminded her,

"... And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?" 
-- Esther 4:14

Well, the gold scepter was extended and Esther was granted safe access to King Xerxes. What we need to see is that we have access to the the god of all creation 24/7. With freedom, because nothing is holding us back -- with boldness, because nothing is holding us back -- with confidence, because nothing is hold us back. No thing real -- nothing abstract thing, no spiritual thing, no rules, no regulations, no fears -- NOTHING, absolutely NOTHING can keep us from approaching God. EXCEPT! (Wasn't expecting that were you?) EXCEPT, YOURSELF. With boldness and with assurance "we may" approach God without any fear of rejection, reprisal, rebuffing, or loss of life. The choice is yours. The choice is mine. The choice is there for all believers.

Bottom Line: May we all understand that nothing is stopping us from approaching God at anytime, any place, for any reason. May we know and realize the boldness, the freedom and the confidence we have in accessing the God of all creation, the King of kings and Lord of lords. May we know that -- "we may." And then, choose to approach.  Amen? Amen!

Monday, July 2, 2018


"Search me..."

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there  is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." -- Psalm 139:23-24

Psalm 139, a psalm of David. We could devote several weeks of Monday Morning! to just this one psalm.  I have always had a special place in my heart for it. The verses above are the last two of the psalm. Let's look at them briefly.
"Search me...". Have you ever ask the LORD to do that in your own personal life? And not just a quick search but an in-depth search of your true heart.  Involving, indeed invoking and allowing the LORD (That is the LORD God Almighty, the creator and ruler of the universe; the creator of all things great and small, the all knowing, all powerful, all present one true God. Note: Now let that sink in a little.)  to perform an in-depth testing  of your anxious thoughts. All your anxious thoughts. Think about that. David obviously had some or else why invite the LORD to search. And to top off the end of the psalm in the last verse, David, asks the LORD to check him out for offenses. Let me tell you what I think that means.

David was willing for the LORD (Again, The LORD God Almighty.) to see if he had any outrage, any indignities, any aggression, any injustice, any misdeeds, any scandal, any sin, any trespass, any vice, any wickedness -- the list could go on and on. David was opening it all up for the LORD to examine. WOW! Could we or would we be even a little willing to be that candid with the The LORD God Almighty?

Now get this, and after the LORD takes a look see, after He examines David --- David ask Him to "lead me in the way everlasting."  How could David ask that after having the LORD see everything offensive about himself?  I think the key is: Prophetically, David, a man after God's own heart 
(I Samuel 13:14; Acts 13:22) was able to see beyond the present to the day that his lineage would produce the Messiah. And, in so doing He saw the One and Only Son of God indeed the Lamb of God who would take away the sin of the world (John 1:29). David got it! David understood it! He was willing to lay it all bare before the LORD unafraid and unashamed for he knew and was able to see The One who would lead him in the way everlasting.

Bottom Line: May we,  like David, be unafraid and unashamed to ask the LORD to search us, to know our heart, to test us, to know all our anxious thoughts, to take a look and see if there is any offensive way in us. And, may we come to know, realize and believe that He, the LORD God Almighty, has made a way through His Only Son, Jesus Christ of Nazareth, for us to be led in the way everlasting. Amen? Amen! -- MG

Monday, June 25, 2018


"... the Spirit of counsel and power ..."

The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him ---
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of power,
the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD ---
and he will delight in the fear of the LORD.
-- Isaiah 11:2-3

Of course this scripture reference from Isaiah has to do with the coming of Messiah.  We see it fulfilled in Jesus' baptism (Matthew 3:16, Mark 1:10, Luke 3:21, John 1:32) and in Luke 4:18 where at the synagogue in Nazareth on a Sabbath day He stood and read the scroll of the prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 61:1-2) and then declared for all to hear that -- "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing."

Just some thoughts:

It has been my observation in scripture that the Holy Spirit always, always, always, comes in power. It is so obvious in the life of Jesus as we read through the Four Gospels. It is obvious in Genesis 1:2 -- "... and the Spirit of God was hovering (brooding, moving, fluttering) over the waters."  In my humble thinking -- you cannot move or brood or hover without energy, without power. The Holy Spirit power at the ready to hear and to jump to obedience at the sound of the voice of Creation. It is obvious when we read time and time again of the Spirit of the Lord coming upon people in the book of Judges. 

Concerning Othniel: "The Spirit of the LORD came upon him, so that he became Israel's judge and went to war." -- Judges 3:10

Concerning Jephthah: "Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah." -- Judges 11:29

Concerning Sampson: "and the Spirit of the LORD began to stir him..." -- Judges 13:25
"The Spirit of the LORD came upon him in power ..." -- Judges 14:6 
"Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon him in power." -- Judges 14:19
"...The Spirit of the LORD came upon him in power." -- Judges 15:14

The prophet Joel prophesied the pouring out of the Spirit: " ... I will pour out My Spirit on all people." -- Joel 2:28.  And, Jesus words -- "...but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high." -- Luke 24:49. "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you:" -- Acts 1:8. Lastly, "All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them." -- Acts 2:4

Bottom Line: The same Holy Spirit power that was present at creation, that was present with Othniel, Jephthah, Sampson and others I did not name. The same Holy Spirit that come upon Jesus. The same Holy Spirit that was poured out upon people in the upper room on the first Pentecost after Jesus' crucifixion is the same Holy Spirit that indwells believers today, this hour, this minute, this moment. May you believe it! Amen? Amen! 

Monday, June 18, 2018


"If ..."

If (no pun intended) we are honest with ourselves we would probably find that we all use the word, "if", more times than we care to mention or keep up with. It can mean: 1. in the event of; allowing that; on condition that; 2. whether; 3. an exclamation expressing a wish; 4. even though. Here I think we will find it  means -- "on condition that".  In all of scripture where "if" is used we find that 54% of the time that is the meaning. Let's look at the entire verse:

The Spirit of God came upon Azariah son of Obed. He went out to meet Asa and said to him, "Listen to me, Asa and all Judah and Benjamin. The LORD is with you when you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you, but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you."
-- 2 Chronicles 15:1-2

To paraphrase: "on the condition you seek Him, He will be found, but on the condition you forsake Him, He will forsake you." Now, I know the Word here is speaking specifically to King Asa and the tribes of Judah and Benjamin. Nevertheless, I do not want to entertain for even a brief moment the thought or idea of me forsaking God and He forsaking me. 
But, that "if" denotes a choice for King Asa. We read later in 2 Chronicles 16 that King Asa chose not to seek the LORD. In essence, forsaking Him.

In the thirty-ninth year of his reign Asa was afflicted with a disease in his feet. Though his disease was severe, even in his illness he did not seek help from the LORD, but only from the physicians.
-- 2 Chronicles 16:12

What an extremely sad way to end -- not seeking help from the LORD. So hard for me to understand because of knowing that Asa knew better. He was warned! Which brings me to another scripture that I hope we all let rule in our lives.

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
-- Matthew 6:33

Bottom Line: May we come to realize without a doubt that when the LORD is with us we are with Him. May we come to realize that as we seek Him and His righteousness He will never leave us nor forsake us. And, may our "if" always be one of seeking Him so that He will be found by us. Amen? Amen! 



Monday, June 11, 2018


"...and would not listen"

 "This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another. Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the alien or the poor. In your hearts do not think evil of each other." -- Zechariah 7:9-10

Administer (execute, bring about) 
--- true (assured) justice (a verdict to restore order)

Show (grant, practice, provide) 
--- mercy and compassion to one another

Do not oppress (defraud, deceive, violate) 
--- the widow (one without a husband, her covering)
--- the fatherless (one without parents, the orphan)
--- the alien (a guest traveling in your country)
--- the poor (the afflicted, lowly, needy)

In your hearts do not think (contrive, imagine, plot) 
--- evil (calamity, harm, trouble) of each other

Just reading that scripture kind of spelled out and expanded should make us consider a lot of things differently. The words were spoken to God's people while they were in exile and captivity in Babylon. They could be spoken to us today as well. In verse 12 the word of the LORD through Zechariah says, "They made their hearts as hard as flint and would not listen ..." May that never be us.

 Bottom Line: Even in these words spoken to a rebellious people may we pay attention. May we not turn our backs on these words. May we not stop up our ears to these words. And, may we not harden our hearts to these words. Amen? Amen.

Monday, June 12, 2017


"Be joyful always ..."

"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." -- I Thessalonians 5:16-18

I want to say, "Wow. Really Paul?  Really?" But then I remember what he wrote to Timothy: "All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work."

So, now I am saying, "Okay, God, show me." And He does. 

I begin to see that the "joyful" comes from what He has deposited inside of me and is not dependent upon my outward circumstances or situation. I begin to see that prayer is part of my communication with "the creator of all things." I begin to see that giving thanks is from a grateful heart remembering the perfect sacrifice of love for me on the cross. And, I begin to see that all of this --- being joyful, praying, being thankful --- is His will -- His choice -- for me in being connected to His one and only Son, Jesus Christ.

My prayer right now? "Father, I want (I will -- I choose) to know You more. I want (I will -- I choose) to be joyful always. I want (I will -- I choose) to pray continually. I want (I will -- I choose) to give thanks in all circumstances. I want (I will - I choose) Your will for me in Christ Jesus. Amen"

Bottom Line: May we realize God's will -- His choice -- for us in Christ Jesus. May we be joyful always. May we be praying continually. And, may we give thanks in all circumstances. Amen? Amen.


Monday, June 5, 2017


"... keep in step..."

 "But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. ... But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come." -- John 16:7 & 13

"Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit." -- Galatians 5:25

One of the many purposes of the Holy Spirit being sent is to keep us in step with Father. If I should want to go one way and the Spirit wants me to go another way --- I am not in step with the Spirit.

Spirit: "Go encourage that person over there."
Me: "No, I am not in a place to do that."

Spirit: "Go pray for that person over there."
Me: "No, I'm not good at that."

Spirit: "Go this way not that."
Me: "Really? But I want to go that way not this way."

Keeping in step with the Spirit requires paying attention -- yes. But, it also requires obedience.
Keeping in step with the Spirit requires having hearing ears -- yes. But, it also requires  obedience.
Keeping in step with the Spirit requires seeing -- yes. But, it also requires obedience.
Keeping in step with the Spirit requires not talking -- yes. But, it also requires obedience. 

He, the Holy Spirit, will gently nudge, quietly speak, lovingly show and mindfully still our lips   --- all of which will keep us in step with Him and Father --- if only we obey.

Bottom Line: May we know, may we learn, may we accept that truly living by the Spirit is being in lock step with Him in all matters, on all occasions, for every situation and circumstance. May we come to know His gentle nudge, His quite voice, His loving sight, His mindful closing of our lips --- and obey Him. Amen? Amen.